Molecular and serological evidence for the presence of novel phleboviruses in sandflies from northern algeria.
ABSTRACT: During summer 2007, a total of 785 phlebotomine flies were trapped in northern Algeria, identified morphologically, organised as monospecific pools and tested for the presence of phlebovirus RNA using degenerate primers. Three pools were positive, and the corresponding PCR products were cloned and sequenced. Viral sequences corresponding to two phleboviruses distinct from each other were detected in sandflies circulating in two close locations (140 km apart) in Northern Algeria. The 3 sequences were aligned with homologous polymerase sequences retrieved from the Genbank database, in order to examine their phylogenetic relationships. One viral sequence (from Phlebotomus papatasi) was closely related to but distinct from a sequence obtained from Phlebotomus ariasi sandflies trapped in Algeria in 2006. The two other viral sequences (from Phlebotomus longicuspis) were genetically distantly related to sequences corresponding to virus members of the Sandfly fever Naples virus species and although falling within the same group, this clearly represents a second distinct novel lineage. These results are indicative of a high genetic heterogeneity within sandflies trapped in a relatively small geographic area. Seroprevalence studies conducted on sera from populations living in the same areas indicated that humans can be infected by these viruses.
Project description:Sandflies are widely distributed around the Mediterranean Basin. Therefore, human populations in this area are potentially exposed to sandfly-transmitted diseases, including those caused by phleboviruses. Whilst there are substantial data in countries located in the northern part of the Mediterranean basin, few data are available for North Africa. In this study, a total of 1489 sandflies were collected in 2008 in Tunisia from two sites, bioclimatically distinct, located 235 km apart, and identified morphologically. Sandfly species comprised Phlebotomus perniciosus (52.2%), Phlebotomus longicuspis (30.1%), Phlebotomus papatasi (12.0%), Phlebotomus perfiliewi (4.6%), Phlebotomus langeroni (0.4%) and Sergentomyia minuta (0.5%). PCR screening, using generic primers for the genus Phlebovirus, resulted in the detection of ten positive pools. Sequence analysis revealed that two pools contained viral RNA corresponding to a novel virus closely related to sandfly fever Naples virus. Virus isolation in Vero cells was achieved from one pool. Genetic and phylogenetic characterization based on sequences in the three genomic segments showed that it was a novel virus distinct from other recognized members of the species. This novel virus was provisionally named Punique virus. Viral sequences in the polymerase gene corresponding to another phlebovirus closely related to but distinct from sandfly fever Sicilian virus were obtained from the eight remaining positive pools.
Project description:A total of 131 phlebotomine Algerian sandflies have been processed in the present study. They belong to the species Phlebotomus bergeroti, Phlebotomus alexandri, Phlebotomus sergenti, Phlebotomus chabaudi, Phlebotomus riouxi, Phlebotomus perniciosus, Phlebotomus longicuspis, Phlebotomus perfiliewi, Phlebotomus ariasi, Phlebotomus chadlii, Sergentomyia fallax, Sergentomyia minuta, Sergentomyia antennata, Sergentomyia schwetzi, Sergentomyia clydei, Sergentomyia christophersi and Grassomyia dreyfussi. They have been characterised by sequencing of a part of the cytochrome b (cyt b), t RNA serine and NADH1 on the one hand and of the cytochrome C oxidase I of the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) on the other hand. Our study highlights two sympatric populations within P. sergenti in the area of its type-locality and new haplotypes of P. perniciosus and P. longicuspis without recording the specimens called lcx previously found in North Africa. We tried to use a polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism method based on a combined double digestion of each marker. These method is not interesting to identify sandflies all over the Mediterranean Basin.
Project description:Phlebotomine sandflies are vectors of several pathogens with significant impact for public health. This study was conducted to investigate and characterize phlebovirus and Leishmania infections in vector sandflies collected in the eastern Thrace region in Turkey and Northern Cyprus, where previous data indicate activity of these agents.Field sampling of sandflies was performed at 4 locations in Edirne and Tekirdag provinces of eastern Thrace and at 17 locations in Lefkosa, Girne, Magosa and Guzelyurt provinces of northern Cyprus. In sandfly pools, phlebovirus RNA and Leishmania DNA were screened via a generic polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and kinetoplast minicircle PCR, respectively. Selected sandfly specimens unsuitable for pathogen detection were identified to species level. Cytochrome oxidase 1 gene region was used for DNA barcoding of selected specimens and pathogen positive pools. Positive amplicons were cloned and characterized by sequencing.A total of 2690 sandflies, collected from Eastern Thrace (15.4%) and Northern Cyprus (84.6%) were evaluated. Morphological examination of 780 specimens from Cyprus exhibited Phlebotomus perfiliewi sensu lato (72.6%), Phlebotomus tobbi (19.7%), Phlebotomus papatasi (2.8%), Laroussius sp. (1.6%) and Sergentomyia azizi (1.6%), Sergentomyia sp. (0.9%), Sergentomyia minuta (0.5%) and Phleobotomus jacusieli (0.1%) species. Pathogen screening was performed in 1910 specimens distributed in 195 pools. In eight pools of P.tobbi sandflies collected in Cyprus, Leishmania infantum DNA was demonstrated. Toscana virus (TOSV) genotype A sequences were identified in two pools of P. perfiliewi s.l. and one pool of P.tobbi sandflies from Cyprus. Co-infection of TOSV and Leishmania infantum was characterized in a P.tobbi pool. Sequences belonging to novel phleboviruses are revealed in three P. perfiliewi s.l. pools. One sequence, provisionally named Edirne virus, identified in Edirne province in eastern Thrace, demonstrated the highest rate of genomic similarity to Adria and Salehabad viruses. Furthermore, Girne 1 and Girne 2 viruses, identified in Girne province, revealed similarities to TOSV and Sandfly Fever Sicilian virus and related strains, respectively.Activity of TOSV genotype A strains in Cyprus and co-infection of sandfly vectors with L. infantum was documented for the first time. Novel phlebovirus strains of unknown medical significance was identified in sampling regions.
Project description:To determine whether sandfly fever Sicilian virus (SFSV) is present in Algeria, we tested sandflies for phlebovirus RNA. A sequence closely related to that of SFSV was detected in a Phlebotomus ariasi sandfly. Of 60 human serum samples, 3 contained immunoglobulin G against SFSV. These data suggest SFSV is present in Algeria.
Project description:Algeria ranks second after Afghanistan for the incidence of cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) worldwide. Here, we report a 34-years retrospective analysis of CL in Algeria and focused on the most affected region, the M'Sila province. All 66 cutaneous isolates corresponded to <i>Leishmania</i> (<i>L</i>.) <i>major</i>. Our study of the sandfly and rodent fauna further highlighted the high density of <i>Phlebotomus papatasi</i> and additional phlebotomine species of medical importance, not previously identified in M'Sila. Wild rodents belonging to nine species were trapped in M'Sila, and <i>Psammomys obesus</i> and <i>Meriones shawi</i> were found infected by <i>L. major</i>. In addition, <i>Leishmania infantum</i> was isolated from two visceral leishmaniasis cases, one dog and its proven vectors (<i>P. perniciosus</i>, <i>P. longicuspis</i>, and <i>P. perfiliewi</i>) inventoried during the survey. The high incidence of CL in the M'Sila province is likely a consequence of the increase in minimum temperatures recorded that constitutes suitable conditions for establishing a high endemicity and leads to an explosive rise in leishmaniases cases in this region. A thorough investigation of the underlying risk factors is urgently needed to detect new cases earlier. All these would improve the preparedness to fight the disease.
Project description:Toscana virus (TOSV), an arthropodborne phlebovirus transmitted by sandflies, can cause febrile illness and meningitis. The vector of TOSV in France was unknown. We detected TOSV RNA in 2 (female Phlebotomus perniciosus) of 61 pools of sandflies captured in southeastern France. Two genotypes of TOSV were identified.
Project description:Cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) is vector borne parasitic disease, considered as public health problem especially in border of Iran and Iraq, Dehloran County (Musian district). The aim of this study was molecular identification of Leishmania parasites in sandfly as vectors of Leishmaniasis. Totally 280 female sandflies were trapped by sticky traps from 7 rural areas of Musiyan in September-November 2012. All sandflies were identified using morphological characters of the head and abdominal terminalia. DNA was extracted from female sandflies and Leishmania was identified using PCR and sequencing. All 280 trapped sandflies were identified as Phelobotumus Papatasi and Leishmania infections were detected in 3.2 % out of 280 female sandflies. All leishmania were identified as L. major and submitted in Gene bank as: LC014642.1, LC014641.1, LC014640.1 and LC014639.1. Frequency of Phlebotomus Papatasi and infection with L. major in studied regions showed that this vector is dominant in these areas.
Project description:A new virus was isolated from three independent pools of Phlebotomus perniciosus sandflies (Diptera; Psychodidae) trapped in two regions of southeastern France, located 90 miles apart. Microscopic, antigenic and genetic analyses indicate that this novel virus belongs to the genus Phlebovirus in the family Bunyaviridae. The new virus is designated Massilia virus since the first isolate was obtained from sandflies collected in the suburban area of Marseille. The complete genome sequence was determined and used to compare the genetic and phylogenetic relationships of Massilia virus with other phleboviruses. Genetic and antigenic properties were employed to address whether or not Massilia virus should be considered a new species within the genus, or a member of a previously recognized species. Cerebrospinal fluid specimens, collected from local patients with central nervous system infections during the previous four-year period were tested for the presence of Massilia virus RNA, but gave negative results. In conclusion, Massilia virus is proposed as a member of the Sandfly fever Naples virus complex; its public health importance has yet to be determined.
Project description:Molecular methods are increasingly used for both species identification of sandflies and assessment of their population structure. In general, they are based on DNA sequence analysis of targets previously amplified by PCR. However, this approach requires access to DNA sequence facilities, and in some circumstances, it is time-consuming. Though DNA sequencing provides the most reliable information, other downstream PCR applications are explored to assist in species identification. Thus, it has been recently proposed that the amplification of a DNA region encompassing partially both the cytochrome-B (cytb) and the NADH dehydrogenase 1 (nd1) genes followed by RFLP analysis with the restriction enzyme Ase I allows the rapid identification of the most prevalent species of phlebotomine sandflies in the Mediterranean region. In order to confirm the suitability of this method, we collected, processed, and molecularly analyzed a total of 155 sandflies belonging to four species including Phlebotomus ariasi, P. papatasi, P. perniciosus, and Sergentomyia minuta from different regions in Spain. This data set was completed with DNA sequences available at the GenBank for species prevalent in the Mediterranean basin and the Middle East. Additionally, DNA sequences from 13 different phlebotomine species (P. ariasi, P. balcanicus, P. caucasicus, P. chabaudi, P. chadlii, P. longicuspis, P. neglectus, P. papatasi, P. perfiliewi, P. perniciosus, P. riouxi, P. sergenti, and S. minuta), from 19 countries, were added to the data set. Overall, our molecular data revealed that this PCR-RFLP method does not provide a unique and specific profile for each phlebotomine species tested. Intraspecific variability and similar RFLP patterns were frequently observed among the species tested. Our data suggest that this method may not be applicable throughout the Mediterranean region as previously proposed. Other molecular approaches like DNA barcoding or phylogenetic analyses would allow a more precise molecular species identification.
Project description:Sandfly-transmitted phleboviruses, such as Toscana, sandfly fever Sicilian, and sandfly fever Naples, can cause human disease and circulate at high rates in Mediterranean countries. Previous studies have also established that viruses other than phleboviruses may be detected in and isolated from sand flies. The recent detection and isolation (in a large variety of mosquito species) of insect-only flaviviruses related to cell fusing agent virus has indicated that the latter is not an evolutionary remnant but the first discovered member of a group of viruses, larger than initially assumed, that has high genetic heterogeneity. Insect-only flaviviruses have been detected in and/or isolated from various species of mosquitoes, but nevertheless only from mosquitoes to date; other dipterans have not been screened for the presence of insect-only flaviviruses. The possible presence of flaviviruses, including insect-only flaviviruses, was investigated in sand flies collected around the Mediterranean during a trapping campaign already underway. Accordingly, a total of 1508 sand flies trapped in France and Algeria, between August 2006 and July 2007, were tested for the presence of flaviviruses using a PCR assay previously demonstrated experimentally to amplify all recognized members of the genus Flavivirus, including insect-only flaviviruses. Two of 67 pools consisting of male Phlebotomus perniciosus trapped in Algeria were positive. The two resulting sequences formed a monophyletic group and appeared more closely related to insect-only flaviviruses associated with Culex mosquitoes than with Aedes mosquitoes, and more closely related to insect-only flaviviruses than to arthropod-borne or to no-known-vector vertebrate flaviviruses. This is the first description of insect-only flaviviruses in dipterans distinct from those belonging to the family Culicidae (including Aedes, Culex, Mansonia, Culiseta, and Anopheles mosquito genera), namely sand flies within the family Psychodidae. Accordingly, we propose their designation as phlebotomine-associated flaviviruses.