Canine leishmaniosis in South America

Department of Veterinary Public Health, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Bari, 70010 Valenzano, Bari, Italy. .
Parasites & Vectors (Impact Factor: 3.43). 02/2009; 2 Suppl 1(Suppl 1):S1. DOI: 10.1186/1756-3305-2-S1-S1
Source: PubMed


ABSTRACT : Canine leishmaniosis is widespread in South America, where a number of Leishmania species have been isolated or molecularly characterised from dogs. Most cases of canine leishmaniosis are caused by Leishmania infantum (syn. Leishmania chagasi) and Leishmania braziliensis. The only well-established vector of Leishmania parasites to dogs in South America is Lutzomyia longipalpis, the main vector of L. infantum, but many other phlebotomine sandfly species might be involved. For quite some time, canine leishmaniosis has been regarded as a rural disease, but nowadays it is well-established in large urbanised areas. Serological investigations reveal that the prevalence of anti-Leishmania antibodies in dogs might reach more than 50%, being as high as 75% in highly endemic foci. Many aspects related to the epidemiology of canine leishmaniosis (e.g., factors increasing the risk disease development) in some South American countries other than Brazil are poorly understood and should be further studied. A better understanding of the epidemiology of canine leishmaniosis in South America would be helpful to design sustainable control and prevention strategies against Leishmania infection in both dogs and humans.

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    • "The concentration occurred in the same area where low vegetation index, which features a modified environment, was found. This finding is important from an epidemiological point of view, because the dogs act as the main domestic reservoirs of Leishmania in urban areas [26]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background Mato Grosso do Sul has been undergoing a process of urbanization which results in loss of native vegetation. This withdrawal makes vectors of man and domestic animals closer, causing changes in the epidemiology of diseases such as American Visceral Leishmaniasis. The aim of the study was to evaluate the phlebotomine fauna and environmental issues related to the transmission of AVL in Ponta Porã, Mato Grosso do Sul, between 2009 and 2010. Methods Vegetation of the urban area was evaluated by Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), Normalized Difference Water Index (NDWI) and Soil Adjusted Vegetation Index (SAVI). Results The results showed that the phlebotomine fauna of the city consists of five species, especially Lutzomyia longipalpis (Lutz and Neiva, 1912), the vector of Leishmania (Leishmania) infantum. Predominance of males was observed. The insects were captured in greater quantity in the intradomicile. Lu. longipalpis was the most frequent and abundant species, present throughout the year, with a peak population after the rainy season. Vectors can be found in high amounts in forest and disturbed environments. Conclusions The finding of Lu. longipalpis in regions with little vegetation and humidity suggests that the species is adapted to different sorts of environmental conditions, demonstrating its close association with man and the environment it inhabits. The tourist feature of Ponta Porã reinforces its epidemiological importance as a vulnerable city. The geographical location, bordering Paraguay through dry border, makes possible the existence of a corridor of vectors and infected dogs between the two countries.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2014 · Parasites & Vectors
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    • "Natural infection of domestic dogs with L. (V.) braziliensis, L. (V.) peruviana, L. (V.) panamensis, L. (V.) colombiensis and L. (L.) mexicana has been reported in Latin America30. To date, there is no solid evidence that dogs act as reservoir hosts for the domestic transmission of CL92,99. Most studies are designed to determine the prevalence of CL in dogs, however, little is known about the parasitologic and immunologic course of infection. "
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    ABSTRACT: Leishmaniasis remains a major public health problem worldwide and is classified as Category I by the TDR/WHO, mainly due to the absence of control. Many experimental models like rodents, dogs and monkeys have been developed, each with specific features, in order to characterize the immune response to Leishmania species, but none reproduces the pathology observed in human disease. Conflicting data may arise in part because different parasite strains or species are being examined, different tissue targets (mice footpad, ear, or base of tail) are being infected, and different numbers ("low" 1×102 and "high" 1×106) of metacyclic promastigotes have been inoculated. Recently, new approaches have been proposed to provide more meaningful data regarding the host response and pathogenesis that parallels human disease. The use of sand fly saliva and low numbers of parasites in experimental infections has led to mimic natural transmission and find new molecules and immune mechanisms which should be considered when designing vaccines and control strategies. Moreover, the use of wild rodents as experimental models has been proposed as a good alternative for studying the host-pathogen relationships and for testing candidate vaccines. To date, using natural reservoirs to study Leishmania infection has been challenging because immunologic reagents for use in wild rodents are lacking. This review discusses the principal immunological findings against Leishmania infection in different animal models highlighting the importance of using experimental conditions similar to natural transmission and reservoir species as experimental models to study the immunopathology of the disease.
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    • "The development of an effective CVL vaccine represents a cost-effective tool for interrupting the transmission cycle and controlling zoonotic VL infection in humans. CVL is widespread throughout South America [12] and the Mediterranean [13] where L. infantum is the most significant causative agent of disease. "
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    ABSTRACT: Leishmaniasis is a disease that ranges in severity from skin lesions to serious disfigurement and fatal systemic infection. Resistance to infection is associated with a T-helper-1 immune response that activates macrophages to kill the intracellular parasite in a nitric oxide-dependent manner. Conversely, disease progression is generally associated with a T-helper-2 response that activates humoral immunity. Current control is based on chemotherapeutic treatments which are expensive, toxic and associated with high relapse and resistance rates. Vaccination remains the best hope for control of all forms of the disease, and the development of a safe, effective and affordable antileishmanial vaccine is a critical global public-health priority. Extensive evidence from studies in animal models indicates that solid protection can be achieved by immunization with defined subunit vaccines or live-attenuated strains of Leishmania. However, to date, no vaccine is available despite substantial efforts by many laboratories. Major impediments in Leishmania vaccine development include: lack of adequate funding from national and international agencies, problems related to the translation of data from animal models to human disease, and the transition from the laboratory to the field. Furthermore, a thorough understanding of protective immune responses and generation and maintenance of the immunological memory, an important but least-studied aspect of antiparasitic vaccine development, during Leishmania infection is needed. This review focuses on the progress of the search for an effective vaccine against human and canine leishmaniasis.
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