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EcoHealth

, Volume 14, Issue 1, pp 116–129 | Cite as

Prevalence and Phylogenetic Analysis of Bartonella Species of Wild Carnivores and Their Fleas in Northwestern Mexico

  • A. M. López-Pérez
  • L. Osikowicz
  • Y. Bai
  • J. Montenieri
  • A. Rubio
  • K. Moreno
  • K. Gage
  • G. Suzán
  • M. Kosoy
Original Contribution

Abstract

The host–parasite–vector relationship of Bartonella spp. system in wild carnivores and their fleas from northwestern Mexico was investigated. Sixty-six carnivores belonging to eight species were sampled, and 285 fleas belonging to three species were collected during spring (April–May) and fall (October–November) seasons. We detected Bartonella species in 7 carnivores (10.6%) and 27 fleas (9.5%) through either blood culture or PCR. Of the 27 Bartonella-positive fleas, twenty-two were Pulex simulans, three were Pulex irritans and one was Echidnophaga gallinacea. The gltA gene and ITS region sequences alignment revealed six and eight genetic variants of Bartonella spp., respectively. These variants were clustered into Bartonella rochalimae, Bartonella vinsonii subsp. berkhoffii and another genotype, which likely represents a novel species of Bartonella spp. Although experimental infection studies are required to prove the vector role of P. simulans, our results suggest that this flea may play an important role in the Bartonella transmission. The results indicated possible host-specific relationships between Bartonella genotypes and the families of the carnivores, but further studies are needed to verify this finding. The presence of zoonotic species of Bartonella spp. in wild carnivores raises the issue of their potential risk for humans in fragmented ecosystems.

Keywords

Bartonella prevalence phylogeny wild carnivores fleas Mexico 

Notes

Acknowledgements

This study was supported by CONACyT Project No. 179482, Graduate student Support program (PAEP-UNAM) and CDC Global Diseases Detection program. We would like to thank A.Vigueras, H.Mendoza, J.Lopez, L.Aguilar, L.Orozco and M.Moguel for helping us during field sampling. We thank J. Diaz, E. Ponce and R. Sierra (Janos Grassland Biological Station, IE-UNAM) and A.Esquer and L.Garcia (Rancho El Uno TNC) for logistical support in the field. We are grateful to L.Lecuona (APHIS-USDA) for logistical support. A.M. López-Pérez is student in the Ph.D. program: Programa de Doctorado en Ciencias de la Producción y la Salud Animal (FMVZ-UNAM) and supported by CONACYT Grant Scholarship.

Supplementary material

10393_2017_1216_MOESM1_ESM.docx (18 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 17 kb)

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Copyright information

© International Association for Ecology and Health 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. M. López-Pérez
    • 1
  • L. Osikowicz
    • 2
  • Y. Bai
    • 2
  • J. Montenieri
    • 2
  • A. Rubio
    • 1
  • K. Moreno
    • 1
  • K. Gage
    • 2
  • G. Suzán
    • 1
  • M. Kosoy
    • 2
  1. 1.Departamento de Etología, Fauna Silvestre y Animales de Laboratorio, Facultad de Medicina Veterinaria y ZootecniaUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MéxicoCiudad de MéxicoMéxico
  2. 2.Division of Vector-Borne DiseasesCenters for Disease Control and PreventionFort CollinsUSA

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