Parasitemia from animals infected with WT, TcRAD51<sup>+/-</sup> or TcRAD51<sup>ox</sup> parasites.

<p>Male Swiss mice were intraperitoneally infected with 5,000 bloodstream forms. Parasitemia was evaluated from the 5<sup>th</sup> to the 22<sup>nd</sup> day post-infection by counting blood trypomastigotes collected from mouse’s tail. (A) Parasite numbers of each mouse at days 16 and 19 after infection are shown. Horizontal lines indicate the mean of parasite numbers from each <i>T</i>. <i>cruzi</i> sample infecting mice. Differences between groups were determined using Kruskal–Wallis test followed by Dunn post hoc test (16th day), or ANOVA test followed by Tukey post hoc test (19th day). Statistically different values are indicated as follows: *<i>p</i> < 0.05, **<i>p</i> < 0.001.(B) Parasitemia curves from animals infected with CL Brener WT, TcRAD51<sup>-/+</sup> or TcRad51<sup>ox</sup> parasites. Each curve represents the mean of 2 distinct experiments (<i>n</i> = 19 to 22 mice per <i>T</i>. <i>cruzi</i> group). The mice were infected with 5,000 blood trypomastigotes intraperitoneally. Parasitemia was evaluated from the 5<sup>th</sup> to the 22<sup>nd</sup> day after infection. (C) Survival of infected animals exposed with three different strains of <i>T</i>. <i>cruzi</i>: WT, TcRad51<sup>ox,</sup> and TcRad51+/-. Male 3-week old Swiss mice were infected intraperitoneally with 5,000 TCT’s. The mortality is presented as a percentage when compared to the control group (mice were injected with saline solution). No statistical difference were observed at the times analyzed, although the overexpressor strain was able to achieve a high mortality at the end time of the experiment.</p>