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1 June 2016 LEISHMANIA INFANTUM INFECTION IN BENNETT'S WALLABIES (MACROPUS RUFOGRISEUS RUFOGRISEUS) IN A SPANISH WILDLIFE PARK
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Abstract

Although dogs are the main reservoir for human Leishmania infantum infection, the disease has also been reported in other domestic and wild mammals. In 2011, a fatal case of naturally acquired leishmaniosis was described for the first time in a Bennett's wallaby (Macropus rufogriseus rufogriseus) kept in a wildlife park in Madrid (Spain). This study was designed to assess the infection status of twelve Bennett's wallabies in the same park one year after this incident. Phlebotomus perniciosus, the main vector of L. infantum in Spain, was screened for using sticky and Centers for Disease Control miniature light traps. L. infantum infection was confirmed by molecular diagnosis in four animals, but only one wallaby returned a positive serology result. The presence of the sand fly vector was also confirmed in this habitat. These results suggest that the first case of L. infantum in a wallaby in this park was not an isolated incident and stress the need for further work to determine the role of this parasite in the morbidity and mortality of these macropods. Madrid was recently the scene of an outbreak of human cutaneous and visceral leishmaniosis. Epidemiological studies have so far revealed the widespread presence of L. infantum infection in animals other than the dog. Our ongoing work suggests a risk of L. infantum infection not only among captive animals in Madrid, but also among threatened species or even species that are already extinct in the wild.

Copyright 2016 by American Association of Zoo Veterinarians
Ana Montoya, Lino Pérez de Quadros, Marta Mateo, Leticia Hernández, Rosa Gálvez, Gabriel Alcántara, Rocío Checa, María Ángeles Jiménez, Carmen Chicharro, Israel Cruz, and Guadalupe Miró "LEISHMANIA INFANTUM INFECTION IN BENNETT'S WALLABIES (MACROPUS RUFOGRISEUS RUFOGRISEUS) IN A SPANISH WILDLIFE PARK," Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 47(2), 586-593, (1 June 2016). https://doi.org/10.1638/2014-0216.1
Received: 12 November 2014; Published: 1 June 2016
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