Parasitology Research

, Volume 115, Issue 9, pp 3535–3541 | Cite as

Detection of Dirofilaria repens and Dirofilaria immitis DNA in mosquitoes from Belarus

  • Tatiana Șuleșco
  • Tatiana Volkova
  • Svetlana Yashkova
  • Alexandru Tomazatos
  • Heidrun von Thien
  • Renke LühkenEmail author
  • Egbert Tannich
Original Paper


During the last two decades, Belarus faces an increase of human cases of Dirofilaria (Nematoda, Spirurida, Onchocercidae) infections. However, comprehensive analyses explaining this development and the identification of mosquito vector species are missing. Here, we present results using temperature data from Belarus and show that the annual number of human Dirofilaria cases is significantly correlated with the yearly average temperatures (Spearman’s rho = 0.49, p < 0.05) and the average sum of potential Dirofilaria transmission days (Spearman’s rho = 0.46, p < 0.05), suggesting that autochthonous transmission is at least in part responsible for the increasing number of clinical Dirofilaria cases in the country. In addition, 467 female mosquitoes were collected from different sampling sites in the regions of Brest and Minsk, which were analyzed by molecular methods for the presence of Dirofilaria repens and Dirofilaria immitis DNA, respectively. Two pools (5.56 %) were tested positive for Dirofilaria (estimated infection rate per 100 specimens = 0.44, 95 % confidence interval = 0.08–1.43), comprising one Anopheles claviger s.l. pool that was positive for D. repens and one Culex pipiens s.l./Culex torrentium pool positive for D. immitis DNA. This, to our knowledge, is the first molecular evidence for the presence of Dirofilaria in mosquitoes from Belarus, suggesting a high probability of autochthonous Dirofilaria transmission in the country.


Dirofilaria immitis Dirofilaria repens Surveillance Mosquito Belarus 



This work was partially supported by EurNegVec COST Action TD1303. We acknowledge the E-OBS dataset from the EU-FP6 project ENSEMBLES ( and the data providers in the ECA&D project (


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tatiana Șuleșco
    • 1
  • Tatiana Volkova
    • 2
  • Svetlana Yashkova
    • 3
  • Alexandru Tomazatos
    • 4
  • Heidrun von Thien
    • 4
  • Renke Lühken
    • 4
    Email author
  • Egbert Tannich
    • 4
    • 5
  1. 1.Institute of ZoologyAcademy of Sciences of MoldovaChisinauMoldova
  2. 2.Scientific and Practical Center of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus for Biological ResourcesMinskBelarus
  3. 3.Ministry of Health of the Republic of Belarus, State Republican Center of Hygiene, Epidemiology and Public HealthMinskBelarus
  4. 4.Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine, WHO Collaborating Centre for Arbovirus and Haemorrhagic Fever Reference and Research National Reference Centre for Tropical Infectious DiseasesHamburgGermany
  5. 5.Centre for Infection Research (DZIF), partner site Hamburg-Luebeck-BorstelHamburgGermany

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