Journal of Parasitic Diseases

, Volume 42, Issue 1, pp 1–18 | Cite as

The fauna and perspective of rodentia ectoparasites in Iran relying on their roles within public health and veterinary characteristics

  • Mousa khosravaniEmail author
Review Article


Historically, rodents-ectoparasites are responsible for many diseases in human and domestic animal communities because they are well-adapted to the environment and nutritional resources. In addition, ectoparasites can affect the reproductive rates, ecological fitness and the dispersal pattern of their hosts. Data was compiled through all publications relating to ectoparasites fauna from Iranian rodents. Host specificity, rodent-parasites interaction, geographical distribution, ecological trends as well as the medical or veterinary importance of ectoparasites are considered in this review. Also, results compared with other equal global findings. According to the obtained information, the genus Hyalomma considered being the major vector of Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever. Sistan-Balouchistan, Isfahan, Fars and Khuzestan are endemic provinces of this disease in Iran. Ixodes ticks (especially Hyalomma spp.) commonly existed throughout the months but had high activity in spring and late autumn seasons. Muridae as the most diversified rodent family was more reiterated exploited host by all parasites in this knowledge. Tatera indica confirmed as a positive host for Francisella tularensis by serological test but the definitive reservoir is still unclear in Iran. Meriones persicus as a nocturnal jird has been permanently presented in semi-desert areas except Dasht-e Kavir desert. This rodent was the frequent host for Pulicid fleas followed by Mus musculus and Cricetulus migratorius (Cricetidae). Rattus norvegicus was specialized host for Polyplax spinulosa (spiny rat louse). Pulex irritans from Pulicidae was spread in particularly west of Iran which known as an endemic focus of plague. Mites were high diversity than other taxa. The domestic vertebrates (sheep, goat and cattle) were primitive hosts and rodents were discovered as auxiliary hosts for ticks in Iran apparently. The available data suggested that lice had a type of model of host specificity due to their morphological traits. Meanwhile, Alborz and Zagros mountains ranges provided the specialized habitats for animals which have been surrounded by northern and western regions. Perhaps these mountainous areas can prevent gene flow between local mammalian populations. Notably, the genealogy of parasite genome can orient toward the evolutionary process into speciation point. In general, more researches are needed to decipher the whole sights of host-parasite association and the role of ectoparasites within zoonosis diseases.


Diversity Ectoparasites Host Iran Rodents 



I would like to thank Ms. Azam Rafat-panah for help to write the draft of the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

This paper hasn’t received financial interests by any organization, corporation or university.


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Copyright information

© Indian Society for Parasitology 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Medical Entomology and Vector Control, School of HealthShiraz University of Medical SciencesShirazIran

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