Biting midges in the genus Culicoides act as vectors of arboviruses throughout the world and as vectors of filariasis in Latin America, the Caribbean, and parts of Africa. Although Culicoides spp. are currently not considered to be vectors of Leishmania protozoa, the high abundance of biting midges in areas with active cutaneous leishmaniasis transmission points to the possibility of Culicoides infection by these pathogens. We used PCR to test captured Culicoides species for natural infection with Leishmania spp. We tested 450 Culicoides females, divided into 30 pools of 15 individuals each, as follows: nine pools of C. foxi (135 specimens), seven pools of C. filariferus (105), seven pools of C. insignis (105), five pools of C. ignacioi (75), and two pools of C. flavivenula (30). PCR confirmed the presence of Leishmania braziliensis DNA in C. ignacioi (0.14%), C. insignis (0.14%), and C. foxi (0.11); and Le. amazonensis DNA in C. filariferus (0.14%) and C. flavivenula (0.50%). We conclude that these Culicoides species can be naturally infected, but vector competence and transmission capability must be confirmed in future studies. Our results warrant further investigation into the role of these biting midge species in the leishmaniasis epidemiological cycle.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.
Vol. 41 • No. 2