Trypanosoma cruzi is the etiological agent of Chagas Disease, which affects 6-7 million people worldwide. Since the early stages of infection and throughout its life cycle, the parasite is exposed to several genotoxic agents. Furthermore, DNA damage is also part of the mechanism of action of at least a few trypanocidal drugs, including Benznidazole. Thus, it is paramount for the parasite to count on an efficient DNA repair machinery to guarantee genome integrity and survival. The present work provides an up-to-date review of both the conserved and peculiar DNA repair mechanisms described in T. cruzi against oxidative stress, ultraviolet and ionizing radiation, DNA adduct-inducing agents, and Benznidazole. The comprehension of the DNA repair mechanisms of the parasite may shed light on the parasite evolution and possibly pave the way for the development of novel and more effective trypanocidal drugs.
Keywords: DNA adduct-inducing agents DNA repair Ionizing radiation Oxidative damage Trypanosoma cruzi UV light