Epidemiological aspects of the Brazilian spotted fever: serological survey of dogs and horses in an endemic area in the State of São Paulo, Brazil

E R de Lemos, R D Machado, J R Coura, M A Guimarães, N Chagas
Revista do Instituto de Medicina Tropical de São Paulo 1996, 38 (6): 427-30
In order to obtain information on Brazilian spotted fever, a study in domestic animals was performed in the County of Pedreira, State of São Paulo, Brazil, where 17 human cases had been notified. Serum samples obtained from animals were tested by indirect immunofluorescence for detectable antibodies to spotted fever-group rickettsiae. Seropositivity was revealed in 12 (36.4%) of 33 dogs and seven (77.8%) of nine horses from the endemic area. For comparison, blood samples from dogs and horses from non endemic area were tested and four (12.9%) of 31 dogs and three (27.3%) of 11 horses were positive. The highest titers of antibodies by IFA (IgG > or = 1:1024) were found only in three dogs and six horses from endemic area. The results suggest that dogs as horses may serve as environmental sentinels for establishing the prevalence of foci of spotted fever in Brazil.

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