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Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases

Nina Król, Anna Obiegala, Franz Maximilian Kretschmar, Dietmar Hamel, Martin Pfeffer
The European polecat, Mustela putorius, occurs almost throughout Europe. However, there is a lack of data on the ectoparasite fauna and the potential role in the circulation of tick-borne pathogens (TBP) of this mustelid species. The aim of this study was to investigate whether M. putorius contributes to the maintenance of TBP in Germany. DNA samples extracted from spleen tissue of 117 M. putorius, which had been collected mainly in North-western Germany from 2012 to 2015, were tested by real-time and conventional PCRs for Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Babesia spp...
February 11, 2019: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Barberine A Silatsa, Jules-Roger Kuiate, Flobert Njiokou, Gustave Simo, Jean-Marc F Kameni, Alabi Tunrayo, Gaston S Amzati, Bernard Bett, Richard Bishop, Naftaly Githaka, Stephen O Opiyo, Appolinaire Djikeng, Roger Pelle
The cattle tick Rhipicephalus microplus is the most important arthropod vector of livestock diseases globally. Since its introduction in West Africa a decade ago, it has been reported in Ivory Coast, Benin, Togo, Mali, Burkina Faso and Nigeria with potentially far-reaching adverse impacts on the livestock sector in the region. Cameroon is located on a major route for transboundary cattle trade between Central and West Africa and it is therefore at risk from R. microplus invasion. This study investigated the occurrence of R...
February 7, 2019: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Florian Binetruy, Xavier Bailly, Christine Chevillon, Oliver Y Martin, Marco V Bernasconi, Olivier Duron
The bacterium Spiroplasma ixodetis is a maternally inherited endosymbiont primarily described from ticks but also found widespread across other arthropods. While it has been identified as a male-killing agent in some insect species, the consequences of infection with S. ixodetis in ticks are entirely unknown, and it is unclear how this endosymbiont spreads across tick species. Here, we have investigated this aspect through the examination of the diversity and evolutionary history of S. ixodetis infections in 12 tick species and 12 other arthropod species...
February 5, 2019: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
M Yawa, N Nyangiwe, C T Kadzere, V Muchenje, T C Mpendulo, M C Marufu
The southern cattle tick, Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus, is an economically important tick that parasitises cattle and is found on other host species if they graze with cattle. The R. (B.) microplus is a highly adapted tick species prevalent in tropical and subtropical regions of the world. In Africa, it has expanded its range and was reported to supersede the native tick, R. (B.) decoloratus. The objective of the study was to determine the distribution of R. (B.) microplus under different ecological zones in the western-central regions of Eastern Cape Province...
January 25, 2019: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Heba F Alzan, Brian M Cooke, Carlos E Suarez
Babesia bovis, a tick-borne apicomplexan parasite responsible for bovine babesiosis has a complex life cycle including sexual development in its Rhipicephalus microplus vector. Understanding the molecular mechanisms involved in sexual development is essential for developing future-generation transmission blocking vaccines (TBVs) and/or non-transmissible attenuated live vaccines. The widely conserved members of the 6-Cys gene family likely play roles in the development of sexual stages of B. bovis, and are candidates for developing novel TBV...
January 25, 2019: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Matias Pablo Juan Szabó, Jamile Oliveira Pascoal, Maria Marlene Martins, Vanessa do Nascimento Ramos, Carolina Fonseca Osava, André Luis Quagliatto Santos, Jonny Yokosawa, Lais Miguel Rezende, Graziela Virginia Tolesano-Pascoli, Khelma Torga, Márcio Botelho de Castro, Adriane Suzin, Amália Regina Mar Barbieri, Karin Werther, Juliana Macedo Magnino Silva, Marcelo Bahia Labruna
The giant anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla) and the collared anteater (Tamandua tetradactyla) are widespread in Brazil and found in all Brazilian biomes. These hosts frequently use domestic animal environments such as pastures, where tick and related microorganism interchange may occur between hosts. Reports of tick infestations of these animals are scattered and refer to small samples and/or are geographically restricted. We herein present data on a wide geographic distribution of ticks and their Rickettsia collected from 72 giant and 30 collared anteaters, mostly road killed, over a period of 18 years, from Southeast and Central-West Brazil encompassing four States and 46 Municipalities...
January 24, 2019: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Kirstine Klitgaard, Jesper Højgaard, Anastasia Isbrand, Jesper J Madsen, Kasper Thorup, Rene Bødker
Presently, it is uncertain to what extent seasonal migrating birds contribute to the introduction of ticks and tick-associated pathogens in Denmark. To quantify this phenomenon, we captured birds during the spring and autumn migration at three field sites in Denmark and screened them for ticks. Bird-derived ticks were identified to tick species and screened for 37 tick-borne pathogens using real-time PCR. Overall, 807 birds, representing 44 bird species, were captured and examined for ticks during the spring (292 birds) and autumn migrations (515 birds)...
January 24, 2019: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Chinmoy Maji, Praveen Goel, A Suthar, Kruti D Mandal, A Gopalakrishnan, Rajender Kumar, B N Tripathi, Sanjay Kumar
Theileria equi and Babesia caballi are tick-borne apicomplexan haemoprotozoan parasites of equines and are responsible for considerable economic losses to stakeholders. Chemotherapeutic drugs that are available not only require multiple dosages but also prompt multiple organ toxicity in treated host though incapable of clearing parasitaemia completely. In this study, we have screened the in vitro inhibitory efficacy of four different drug molecules (o-choline, DABCO®, lumefantrine and eugenol) against T. equi and B...
January 21, 2019: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Isis Arsnoe, Jean I Tsao, Graham J Hickling
Most people who contract Lyme borreliosis in the eastern United States (US) acquire infection from the bite of the nymphal life stage of the vector tick Ixodes scapularis, which is present in all eastern states. Yet <5% of Lyme borreliosis cases are reported from outside the north-central and northeastern US. Geographical differences in nymphal questing (i.e., host-seeking behavior) may be epidemiologically important in explaining this latitudinal gradient in Lyme borreliosis incidence. Using field enclosures and a 'common garden' experimental design at two field sites, we directly tested this hypothesis by observing above-litter questing of laboratory-raised nymphal I...
January 19, 2019: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Jinming Wang, Junlong Liu, Jifei Yang, Xiaoxing Wang, Zhi Li, Xu Jianlin, Xuan Li, Quanjia Xiang, Youquan Li, Zhijie Liu, Jianxun Luo, Guiquan Guan, Hong Yin
Equine piroplasmosis, caused by Theileria equi and Babesia caballi, is an economically important tick-borne disease worldwide. In the current study, 242 blood samples were randomly collected from horses in Zhangye city of Gansu province, China. The presence and genetic diversity of piroplasms were evaluated with a nested PCR assay, gene sequencing and phylogenetic analysis. The results showed that seventy-five (31.0%) samples were positive for piroplasms. Sequences analysis showed that seventy-three (30.2%) were positive for T...
January 16, 2019: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
William J Landesman, Kenneth Mulder, Brian F Allan, Laura A Bashor, Felicia Keesing, Kathleen LoGiudice, Richard S Ostfeld
Tick microbiomes may play an important role in pathogen transmission. However, the drivers of microbiome variation are poorly understood, and this limitation has impeded mechanistic understanding of the functions of microbial communities for pathogen acquisition. The goal of this research was to characterize the role of the blood meal host in structuring the microbiome of Ixodes scapularis, the primary vector of Lyme disease in the eastern United States, and to determine if ticks that fed from different host species harbor distinct bacterial communities...
January 12, 2019: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Cody W Koloski, Christophe M R LeMoine, Adam R Klonowski, Charlotte M Smith, Bryan J Cassone
For more than 50 years DEET (N,N-Diethyl-m-toluamide) has been considered the gold standard of repellents. It is applied to the skin or clothing to deter mosquitoes and other blood-sucking invertebrate pests from approaching and/or settling, and ultimately it provides temporary protection from bites. Despite rampant global use, surprisingly little is understood about DEET's mode of action and the molecular targets of the active ingredient. Furthermore, the theories into its mechanism for repellency are largely based off fruit fly and mosquito research...
January 2, 2019: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Amalia R M Barbieri, Matias P J Szabó, Francisco B Costa, Thiago F Martins, Herbert S Soares, Graziela Pascoli, Khelma Torga, Danilo G Saraiva, Vanessa N Ramos, Carolina Osava, Monize Gerardi, Ricardo Augusto Dias, Edsel A Moraes, Fernando Ferreira, Marcio B Castro, Marcelo B Labruna
This study evaluated the species richness and seasonal dynamics of ticks and rickettsial agents infecting ticks in the largest natural Reserve of the Cerrado biome of Brazil, the Grande Sertão Veredas National Park. During 2012-2014, a total of 9531 host-seeking ticks were collected by dry ice traps and dragging, whereas 1563 ticks were collected from small mammals, and 1186 ticks from domestic animals. Overall, the following 12 tick species were identified: Amblyomma auricularium, Amblyomma dubitatum, Amblyomma naponense, Amblyomma ovale, Amblyomma parvum, Amblyomma sculptum, Amblyomma tigrinum, Amblyomma triste, Dermacentor nitens, Rhipicephalus microplus, Rhipicephalus sanguineus sensu lato, and Ornithodoros mimon...
December 31, 2018: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Laurence Geebelen, Dieter Van Cauteren, Brecht Devleesschauwer, Sarah Moreels, Katrien Tersago, Herman Van Oyen, Niko Speybroeck, Tinne Lernout
Lyme borreliosis (LB) is an important tick-borne disease which can cause a broad range of symptoms mainly affecting the skin, the nervous system and the joints. This study aims to estimate the incidence of the different clinical manifestations of LB in Belgium. The incidence of erythema migrans (EM) was estimated through the network of sentinel general practices at 97.6/100,000 inhabitants (uncertainty interval [UI] 82.0-113.0) for the period 2015-2017. This result was used to estimate the incidence of other LB manifestations based on their proportional distribution (ratios) to EM reported in the neighboring countries of Belgium...
December 28, 2018: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Nanna Skaarup Andersen, Malena Bestehorn, Lidia Chitimia-Dobler, Hans Jørn Kolmos, Per Moestrup Jensen, Gerhard Dobler, Sigurdur Skarphédinsson
The Danish island of Bornholm in the Baltic Sea has been known as a tick-borne encephalitis (TBE) natural focus for more than 60 years. TBE in humans is diagnosed on a regular basis either in inhabitants or tourists of the island. Other areas in Denmark have been suggested as possible risk areas of TBE. Despite the long-known endemicity on Bornholm and the possibility of the virus circulating in other areas, no data on the prevalences of TBE virus (TBEV) in ticks, or adequate molecular characterization and phylogenetic studies are available for the circulating TBEV strains...
December 28, 2018: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Albert Agoulon, Thierry Hoch, Dieter Heylen, Karine Chalvet-Monfray, Olivier Plantard
Tick-borne diseases have a complex epidemiology that depends on different ecological communities, associating several species of vertebrate hosts, vectors and pathogens. While most studies in Europe are focused on Ixodes ricinus, the common sheep tick, other Ixodes species may also be involved in the transmission or maintenance of different pathogens. In this study, we describe for the first time the activity pattern of I. frontalis, an understudied but widespread tick species associated with several common bird species in Europe...
December 28, 2018: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Amandine Boeuf, Gilles Schnell, Quentin Bernard, Aurelie Kern, Benoît Westermann, Laurence Ehret-Sabatier, Antoine Grillon, Frederic Schramm, Benoît Jaulhac, Nathalie Boulanger
Understanding the mechanism of pathogen transmission is essential for the development of strategies to reduce arthropod-borne diseases. The pharmaco- and immunomodulatory properties of insect and acarine saliva play an essential role in the efficiency of pathogen transmission. The skin as the site where arthropod saliva and pathogens are inoculated - represents the key interface in vector-borne diseases. We identified tick molecules potentially involved in pathogen transmission, using micro-HPLC and mass spectrometry, followed by in vitro assays on human skin cells...
December 23, 2018: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Fei Meng, Meiming Ding, Zhizhou Tan, Zihan Zhao, Lin Xu, Jianmin Wu, Biao He, Changchun Tu
Ticks are implicated in the transmission of various human and livestock pathogens worldwide. This study aimed to understand the geographical distribution of tick species, along with tick-associated viruses, in Heilongjiang Province, northeast China. Molecular methods were used to classify tick species, with next-generation sequencing and polymerase chain reaction-based analyses used to assess the viromes of ticks from four representative sampling locations in the Greater Khingan Mountains. Five species of ixodid ticks were identified, including Ixodes persulcatus, Dermacentor nuttalli, Dermacentor silvarum, Haemaphysalis longicornis, and Haemaphysalis concinna...
December 17, 2018: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Milana Troskie, Lourens de Villiers, Andrew Leisewitz, Marinda C Oosthuizen, Melvyn Quan
Canine babesiosis is caused by tick-transmitted intraerythrocytic protozoan parasites occurring worldwide. In southern Africa, babesiosis is caused by Babesia rossi and B. vogeli and is one of the most common and important infectious diseases affecting dogs. There is no reliable, rapid and sensitive method for the detection of these parasites, especially when parasitaemia is low. The aim of this study was to develop a sensitive and specific multiplex TaqMan® MGB PCR assay for the diagnosis of canine babesiosis infections occurring in southern Africa, and to discriminate between Babesia rossi and B...
December 14, 2018: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Tereza Rojko, Petra Bogovič, Stanka Lotrič-Furlan, Katarina Ogrinc, Tjaša Cerar-Kišek, Urška Glinšek Biškup, Miroslav Petrovec, Eva Ružić-Sabljić, Andrej Kastrin, Franc Strle
The aims of the study were to determine the frequency of borrelial infection in patients with peripheral facial palsy (PFP) and to compare clinical and laboratory characteristics of patients with borrelial PFP and patients with PFP of unknown etiology. Adult patients with PFP who presented at our department between January 2006 and December 2013 qualified for the study if they had undergone lumbar puncture and also been tested for the presence of borrelial IgM and IgG antibodies in serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in indirect chemiluminescence immunoassay...
December 6, 2018: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
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