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Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz
Print version ISSN 0074-0276
QUARESMA, Patrícia Flávia; CARVALHO, Gustavo Mayr de Lima; RAMOS, Mariana Campos das Neves Farah and ANDRADE FILHO, José Dilermando. Natural Leishmania sp. reservoirs and phlebotomine sandfly food source identification in Ibitipoca State Park, Minas Gerais, Brazil. Mem. Inst. Oswaldo Cruz [online]. 2012, vol.107, n.4, pp. 480-485. ISSN 0074-0276. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0074-02762012000400007.
Leishmania spp are distributed throughout the world and different species are associated with varying degrees of disease severity. However, leishmaniasis is thought to be confined to areas of the world where its insect vectors, sandflies, are present. Phlebotomine sandflies obtain blood meals from a variety of wild and domestic animals and sometimes from humans. These vectors transmit Leishmania spp, the aetiological agent of leishmaniasis. Identification of sandfly blood meals has generally been performed using serological methods, although a few studies have used molecular procedures in artificially fed insects. In this study, cytochrome b gene (cytB) polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was performed in DNA samples isolated from 38 engorged Psychodopygus lloydi and the expected 359 bp fragment was identified from all of the samples. The amplified product was digested using restriction enzymes and analysed for restriction fragment length polymorphisms (RFLPs). We identified food sources for 23 females; 34.8% yielded a primate-specific banding profile and 26.1% and 39.1% showed banding patterns specific to birds or mixed restriction profiles (rodent/marsupial, human/bird, rodent/marsupial/human), respectively. The food sources of 15 flies could not be identified. Two female P. lloydi were determined to be infected by Leishmania using internal transcribed spacer 1 and heat shock protein 70 kDa PCR-RFLP. The two female sandflies, both of which fed on rodents/marsupials, were further characterised as infected with Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis. These results constitute an important step towards applying methodologies based on cytB amplification as a tool for identifying the food sources of female sandflies.
Keywords : phlebotomines; food source identification; Leishmania natural infection.