Rodents and other small mammal reservoirs in plague foci in northeastern Brazil
Introduction: Plague is an acute, infectious zoonotic disease, primarily of wild rodents and their fleas, that affects humans and other mammals. In Brazil, several plague foci are located in the northeast region. Plague surveillance based on monitoring of rodents was discontinued in 2007, and the current information on rodent populations is unsatisfactory. Our purpose was to update the information on rodents and other small mammals in plague foci in northeastern Brazil.
Methodology: Nine surveys in the historically most important northeastern plague areas were conducted in 2013-2015.
Results: In this study, 393 animals (13 rodent and four marsupial species) were entrapped. The plague bacterium Yersinia pestis was not detected in tissue sample cultures from the 225 animals that were analyzed. Eighty sera samples were analyzed for anti-F1 antibodies by hemagglutination (HA) and protein A ELISA tests, and all were negative, except for one marsupial, Monodelphis domestica, which was HA positive.
Conclusions: Qualitative and quantitative differences in the animal populations were observed in the areas surveyed, and the antibody positive marsupial indicated that plague continues to circulate in the wild.
Copyright (c) 2017 Erika de Cássia Vieira da Costa, Marise Sobreira, Nilma Cintra Leal, Alzira Maria Paiva de Almeida
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