Diversity of rickettsiae and potential vectors of spotted fever in an area of epidemiological interest in the Cerrado biome, midwestern Brazil

I B Machado, K Bitencourth, K M Cardoso, S V Oliveira, M Santalucia, S F F Marques, M Amorim, G S GazêTa
Medical and Veterinary Entomology 2018, 32 (4): 481-489
The Brazilian state of Goiás, untouched by spotted fever (SF) until 2012, has subsequently reported cases of the disease in several regions. This study aimed to survey the diversity of potential vectors and rickettsia in areas of Goiás under environmental surveillance or case investigation for SF. Collected specimens were assayed with molecular biology technology using DNA extraction, amplification and sequencing of fragments of the genes gltA, ompA, ompB and sca4 to detect rickettsia in ticks and fleas. Amplification of cytochrome oxidase subunit II and 16S rRNA was performed to assist tick identification. Rickettsia felis (Rickettsiales: Rickettsiaceae) was found in Ctenocephalides felis (Bouché, 1835) (Siphonaptera: Pulicidae). Rickettsia bellii was found in Amblyomma rotundatum Koch, 1844 (Ixodida: Ixodidae) and in Amblyomma cajennense sensu lato. Rickettsia sp. strain NOD was found in Amblyomma nodosum Neumann, 1899. Of the Amblyomma cajennense complex, Amblyomma sculptum Berlese, 1888 was confirmed in the northern, northeast, midwest and southeast regions of Goiás, whereas Amblyomma cajennense sensu stricto (Fabricius, 1787) was found only in the northern region of the state. Amblyomma dubitatum Neumann, 1899 associated with a species of the A. cajennense complex was the most common epidemiological finding, although Rickettsia rickettsii was not detected. This is the first report of Rickettsia sp. strain NOD in Goiás.


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