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(Reference retrieved automatically from Web of Science through information on FAPESP grant and its corresponding number as mentioned in the publication by the authors.)

Diagnosis and epidemiology of Leishmania infantum in domestic cats in an endemic area of the Amazon region, Brazil

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Verde Oliveira Rocha, Ana Vitoria [1] ; Sodre Moreno, Brenda Fernanda [1] ; Cabral, Aline Diniz [2] ; Louzeiro, Nayara Mendes [1] ; Miranda, Leandro Macedo [1] ; Brandao dos Santos, Vivian Magalhaes [3] ; Costa, Francisco Borges [1] ; Seabra Nogueira, Rita de Maria [1] ; Marcili, Arlei [4, 5] ; Speranca, Marcia Aparecida [2] ; da Costa, Andrea Pereira [1]
Total Authors: 11
[1] Univ Estadual Maranhao, Sao Luis, Maranhao - Brazil
[2] Fed Univ ABC, Ctr Nat & Human Sci, Sao Bernardo Do Campo, SP - Brazil
[3] Univ Estadual Ceara, Biotechnol & Mol Biol Lab, Itaperi Campus, Fortaleza, Ceara - Brazil
[4] Univ Santo Amaro, Sao Paulo, SP - Brazil
[5] Univ Sao Paulo, Sch Vet Med, Dept Prevent Vet Med & Anim Hlth, Sao Paulo, SP - Brazil
Total Affiliations: 5
Document type: Journal article
Source: Veterinary Parasitology; v. 273, p. 80-85, SEP 2019.
Web of Science Citations: 0

Visceral leishmaniasis is a zoonotic disease caused by Leishmania infantum for which dogs are the main reservoir. In South America, presence of this disease is expanding along with increasing dispersion of its principal vector, the sand-fly Lutzomyia longipalpis. Feline leishmaniasis is an emerging disease in domestic cats, but epidemiological studies in endemic areas of the Amazon region of Brazil are scarce and the role of cats as reservoirs of L. infantum has been debated. The aim of this study was to investigate L. infantum infection in cats living in the Amazon biome region, using serological and molecular methods. A total of 105 cats were subjected to clinical examination and blood samples were taken for immunofluorescent-antibody (1FAT) serological evaluation, to determine anti-Leishmania antibody titers. Conventional PCR and Sanger's sequencing targeting L. infantum chitinase and Leishmania species ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS-1) encoding genes were performed on conjunctival swabs from these cats. Seropositivity was detected in 32 animals (30.48%), thus confirming that contact between these cats and the parasite was occurring. PCR followed by amplicon sequencing showed that three samples (2.86%) were positive for a chitinase gene and six (5.71%) were positive for the ITS-1 gene. Parasite-positive diagnoses presented a statistically significant association with free access to the streets (p = 0.0111), cohabitation with dogs affected previously by VL (p = 0.0006) and absence of backyard cleaning and garbage collection (p = 0.00003). These results emphasize that cats should be included in epidemiological surveys of leishmaniasis, especially in endemic areas, if not as the reservoir host (unproven), at least as a ``sentinel host{''} that is useful for revealing situations of endemic circulation of L. infantum. Moreover, in these areas, feline leishmaniasis needs to be considered in the differential diagnosis among domestic cats presenting alopecia, rarefied hair, lacerations and ulcerative dermatitis. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 13/26096-4 - Heterologous expression of the chitinase enzyme of Leishmania (L.) infantum chagasi, Leishmania (V.) braziliensis and Leishmania (V.) amazonensis: serological diagnosis and comparative molecular study using expression systems of insects cell and bacteria
Grantee:Aline Diniz Cabral
Support type: Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate
FAPESP's process: 11/00147-6 - Conjunctival swab samples for canine leishmaniasis detection by PCR
Grantee:Trícia Maria Ferreira de Sousa Oliveira
Support type: Regular Research Grants
FAPESP's process: 16/14514-4 - Characterization of the chitinase from South American endemic Leishmania species: use in diagnosis in humans, dogs and sandflies
Grantee:Marcia Aparecida Speranca
Support type: Regular Research Grants
FAPESP's process: 10/50886-7 - Isolation and morphological, biological and molecular characterization and multigenes phylogeography from species causing visceral leishmaniasis
Grantee:Arlei Marcili
Support type: Research Grants - Young Investigators Grants