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Molecular and serological research for trypanosomatids from blood and conjunctival swab of captive monkeys

Grant number: 19/26708-6
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2020
Effective date (End): January 31, 2022
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Veterinary Medicine - Preventive Veterinary Medicine
Principal Investigator:Simone Baldini Lucheis
Grantee:Isabella Neves Aires
Host Institution: Departamento de Descentralização do Desenvolvimento (APTA Regional). Secretaria de Agricultura e Abastecimento (São Paulo - Estado). Campinas , SP, Brazil


The Trypanosomatidae family includes protozoans of broad medical and veterinary interest, which infect various vertebrates, including humans, and use a range of insects as vector agents. Two genera of great importance in this family are the genera Leishmania and Trypanosoma. The genus Leishmania includes protozoa that cause leishmaniasis, zoonoses that can present in visceral and tegumentary forms and whose vectors are different species of sandflies belonging to the genus Lutzomyia in the Americas and Phlebotomus in Europe. Visceral leishmaniasis has Leishmania infantum as agent in the Americas, whereas tegumentary leishmaniasis presents several responsible species, such as Leishmania amazonensis, Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis, Leishmania major, among others. The genus Trypanosoma has as its main species Trypanosoma cruzi, an etiological agent of Chagas disease, which infects humans and wild animals, including nonhuman primates, which can be infected by a variety of trypanosomes in their environment, such as zoos, susceptible to the blood repast of the vectors, which can transmit the disease to humans who frequent the site. The objective of this study is to research Leishmania spp. and Trypanosoma spp. in 48 captive primates, located in the Quinzinho de Barros Municipal Zoological Park, southeastern Brazil. Blood samples and secretions from the conjunctival swab will be collected using the serological technique Immunofluorescence Antibody Test (IFAT) for Leishmania infantum, Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis and Trypanosoma cruzi, direct parasitological search on blood smears, as well as molecular test of conventional Polymerase Chain Reaction (cPCR) by amplification of protozoan DNA and, subsequently, genetic sequencing of amplified samples for Trypanosomatidae family with phylogenetic inferences, enabling the identification of the parasite species. Therefore, it is intended in this study to research Leishmania spp. and Trypanosoma spp. in nonhuman primates, as a form of epidemiological surveillance, in order to stablish preventive measures to reduce the risk of transmission of the disease to keepers and the visiting public.(AU)

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