Variations of Glossina sp. and trypanosome species frequency within different habitats in a sleeping sickness focus, Gabon
Introduction: Knowledge of the infectious status of the Glossina is an indicator of risk of resurgence of Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT). Environmental conditions have an impact on the density and diversity of both vector and Trypanosoma. The aim of the study was to determine the diversity and the infection rate of Glossina as well as the diversity of trypanosome species within habitats of an old HAT focus, in Gabon.
Methodology: Glossina were captured in September 2012 in three ecological sites. Vavoua traps were installed for twelve days. All captured flies were identified. Glossina were selected for trypanosome identification by Polymerase Chain Reaction.
Results: 1178 Glossina were captured: 55.8% in degraded forest, 28.9% in flood area and 15.4% in secondary forest. Glossina fusca congolensis (37%) and G.palpalis palpalis (36.4%) were the most abundant vector species. G. fusca congolensis was predominant in secondary forest and in flood area, while in degraded forest, it was G.palpalis palpalis. Trypanosoma infection rate was 30.7%, 42% in secondary forest, 32% in degraded forest and 18% in flood area. Trypanosoma congolense savannah was the main species detected (18.7%) followed by T.brucei brucei (10.7%) and T. brucei gambiense (4%). T. congolense savannah type was predominant in the secondary forest and in degraded forest (66.7% versus 55.5%).
Conclusion: Glossina density and trypanosome infection rate varied according to the habitat within HAT focus. The density of tsetse was the highest in degraded forest while the infection rate was highest in secondary forest. Continuous disease surveillance and control measures are needed.
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