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Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz

Print version ISSN 0074-0276On-line version ISSN 1678-8060

Mem. Inst. Oswaldo Cruz vol.89 no.3 Rio de Janeiro Jul./Sept. 1994 

The dermal leishmaniases of Brazil, with special reference to the eco-epidemiology of the disease in Amazonia

R. Lainson1 

J. J. Shaw1 

F. T. Silveira1 

A. A. A. de Souza1 

R. R. Braga1 

E. A. Y. Ishikawa1 

Instituto Evandro Chagas, Seção de Parasitologia, Belém, Brasil


Six species of Leishmania are at present known to cause cutaneous and/or mucocutaneous leishamniasis in Brazil, and they are all to be found in the Amazon region of this country. The eco-epidemiology of each is discussed, with the observation that the Amazonian leishmaniases are all zoonoses, with their source in silvatic mammals and phlebotomine sandfly vectors. With man's destruction of the natural forest in southern Brazil, some sandfly species have survived by adapting to a peridomestic or domiciliary habitat in rural areas. Some domestic animals, such as dogs and equines are seemingly now involved in the epidemiology of the disease. No such process has yet been reported in the Amazon region, but may well take place with the continuing devastation of its forest.

Key words: Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis; Leishmania (Viannia) guyanensis; Leishmania (Viannia) lainsoni; Leishmania (Viannia) shawi; Leishmania (Viannia) naiffi; Leishmania (Leishmania) amazonensis; eco-epidemiology; Amazonia; Brazil


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