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1 December 2009 Historical and Recent Evidence for Close Relationships Among Rickettsia parkeri, R. conorii, R. africae, and R. sibirica: Implications for Rickettsial Taxonomy
Jerome Goddard
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Abstract

Rickettsia parkeri, a member of the spotted fever group rickettsias, was first described in 1939 and was thought to be non-pathogenic until recently, when it was found to cause a spotted fever-like illness in humans and areas of necrosis (eschars) at the sites of tick bites. Accordingly, there is currently much interest in this emerging pathogen. In this study, all published articles concerning R. parken were reviewed and analyzed for evidence of relatedness among this agent and other spotted fever group (SFG) rickettsiae which also produce similar clinical syndromes and/or eschars, including R. conorii, R. africae, and R. sibirica. A synthesis of the historical (antigenic) and recent (molecular) data supporting a phylogenetic sub-grouping of these SFG organisms is presented and comments are offered about the taxonomy of rickettsial organisms in general, and R. parken in particular.

Jerome Goddard "Historical and Recent Evidence for Close Relationships Among Rickettsia parkeri, R. conorii, R. africae, and R. sibirica: Implications for Rickettsial Taxonomy," Journal of Vector Ecology 34(2), 238-242, (1 December 2009). https://doi.org/10.3376/038.034.0210
Received: 27 May 2009; Accepted: 1 August 2009; Published: 1 December 2009
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KEYWORDS
American boutonneuse fever
phylogenetic analysis
Rickettsia parkeri
rickettsial taxonomy
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