Acute tick-borne rickettsiosis caused by Rickettsia heilongjiangensis in Russian Far East.
ABSTRACT: An acute tick-borne rickettsiosis caused by Rickettsia heilongjiangensis was diagnosed in 13 patients from the Russian Far East in 2002. We amplified and sequenced four portions of three rickettsial genes from the patients' skin biopsy results and blood samples and showed that the amplified rickettsial genes belong to R. heilongjiangensis, which was recently isolated from Dermacentor sylvarum ticks in nearby regions of China. This rickettsia, belonging to subgroup of R. japonica, was previously suggested to be pathogenic for humans on the basis of serologic findings. We tested serum samples with different rickettsial antigens from 11 patients and confirmed increasing titers of immunoglobulin (Ig) G and IgM to spotted fever group rickettsiae, including R. heilongjiangensis. Clinical and epidemiologic data on these patients show that this disease is similar to other tick-borne rickettsioses.
Project description:The association between companion animals and tick-borne rickettsial disease has long been recognized and can be essential to the emergence of rickettsioses. We tested whole blood from dogs in temporary shelters by using PCR for rickettsial infections. Of 93 dogs, 12 (13%) were positive for Rickettsia parkeri, an emerging tick-borne rickettsiosis.
Project description:In Brazil, Brazilian spotted fever was once considered the only tick-borne rickettsial disease. We report eschar-associated rickettsial disease that occurred after a tick bite. The etiologic agent is most related to Rickettsia parkeri, R. africae, and R. sibirica and probably widely distributed from Sao Paulo to Bahia in the Atlantic Forest.
Project description:Tick-borne rickettsioses are caused by obligate intracellular bacteria belonging to the spotted fever group of the genus Rickettsia. These zoonoses are among the oldest known vector-borne diseases. However, in the past 25 years, the scope and importance of the recognized tick-associated rickettsial pathogens have increased dramatically, making this complex of diseases an ideal paradigm for the understanding of emerging and reemerging infections. Several species of tick-borne rickettsiae that were considered nonpathogenic for decades are now associated with human infections, and novel Rickettsia species of undetermined pathogenicity continue to be detected in or isolated from ticks around the world. This remarkable expansion of information has been driven largely by the use of molecular techniques that have facilitated the identification of novel and previously recognized rickettsiae in ticks. New approaches, such as swabbing of eschars to obtain material to be tested by PCR, have emerged in recent years and have played a role in describing emerging tick-borne rickettsioses. Here, we present the current knowledge on tick-borne rickettsiae and rickettsioses using a geographic approach toward the epidemiology of these diseases.
Project description:Rickettsioses are emerging zoonotic diseases that are often neglected in many countries in Southeast Asia. Rickettsial agents are transmitted to humans through exposure to infected arthropods. Limited data are available on the exposure of indigenous community and animal farm workers to the aetiological agents and arthropod vectors of rickettsioses in Peninsular Malaysia. Serological analysis of Rickettsia conorii and Rickettsia felis was performed for 102 individuals from the indigenous community at six rural villages and 87 workers from eight animal farms in Peninsular Malaysia in a cross-sectional study. The indigenous community had significantly higher seropositivity rates for R. conorii (P<0.001) and R. felis (P<0.001), as compared to blood donors from urban (n=61). Similarly, higher seropositivity rates for R. conorii (P=0.046) and R. felis (P<0.001) were noted for animal farm workers, as compared to urban blood donors. On the basis of the sequence analysis of gltA, ompA and ompB, various spotted fever group rickettsiae closely related to R. raoultii, R. heilongjiangensis, R. felis-like organisms, R. tamurae, Rickettsia sp. TCM1, R. felis, Rickettsia sp. LON13 and R. hulinensis were identified from tick/flea samples in animal farms, indigenous villages and urban areas. This study describes rickettsial seropositivity of the Malaysian indigenous community and animal farm workers, and provides molecular evidence regarding the presence of rickettsial agents in ticks/fleas infesting domestic animals in Peninsular Malaysia.
Project description:Using PCR, we screened 411 ticks from four genera collected in Russia and Kazakhstan for the presence of rickettsiae and ehrlichiae. In Russia, we detected "Rickettsia heilongjiangensis," Rickettsia sp. strain RpA4, and Ehrlichia muris. In Kazakhstan, we detected Rickettsia sp. strain RpA4 and a rickettsia closely related to Rickettsia aeschlimannii. These agents should be considered in a differential diagnosis of tick-borne infections in these areas.
Project description:During most of the 20th century, the epidemiology of tick-borne rickettsioses could be summarized as the occurrence of a single pathogenic rickettsia on each continent. An element of this paradigm suggested that the many other characterized and noncharacterized rickettsiae isolated from ticks were not pathogenic to humans. In this context, it was considered that relatively few tick-borne rickettsiae caused human disease. This concept was modified extensively from 1984 through 2005 by the identification of at least 11 additional rickettsial species or subspecies that cause tick-borne rickettsioses around the world. Of these agents, seven were initially isolated from ticks, often years or decades before a definitive association with human disease was established. We present here the tick-borne rickettsioses described through 2005 and focus on the epidemiological circumstances that have played a role in the emergence of the newly recognized diseases.
Project description:Rickettsia heilongjiangensis is an emerging tick-transmitted human pathogen causing far-Eastern spotted fever. Here we report the complete sequence and the main features of the genome of R. heilongjiangensis (strain 054).
Project description:Tick-borne rickettsioses are considered important emerging zoonoses worldwide, but their etiological agents, rickettsiae, remain poorly characterized in northeastern China, where many human cases have been reported during the past several years. Here, we determined the characteristics of Rickettsia spp. infections in ticks in this area.Ticks were collected by flagging vegetation from Jilin and Heilongjiang provinces of northeastern China followed by morphological identification. The presence of Rickettsia spp. in ticks was detected by PCR targeting the 23S-5S ribosomal RNA intergenic spacer, citrate synthase (gltA) gene, and 190-kDa outer membrane protein gene (ompA). The newly-generated sequences were subjected to phylogenetic analysis using the software MEGA 6.0.The overall infection rate of Rickettsia spp. was 6.12 %. Phylogenetic analyses based on the partial gltA and ompA genes demonstrated that rickettsiae detected in the ticks belong to four species, including "Candidatus Rickettsia tarasevichiae", Rickettsia heilongjiangensis, Rickettsia raoultii, and a potential new species isolate. The associated tick species were also identified, i.e. Dermacentor nuttalli and Dermacentor silvarum for R. raoultii, Haemaphysalis concinna and Haemaphysalis longicornis for R. heilongjiangensis, and Ixodes persulcatus for "Ca. R. tarasevichiae". All Rickettsia spp. showed significantly high infection rates in ticks from Heilongjiang when compared to Jilin Province.Rickettsia heilongjiangensis, R. raoultii and "Ca. R. tarasevichiae" are widely present in the associated ticks in northeastern China, but more prevalent in Heilongjiang Province. The data of this study increase the information on the distribution of Rickettsia spp. in northeastern China, which have important public health implications in consideration of their recent association with human diseases.
Project description:Murine typhus is a flea-borne febrile illness caused by Rickettsia typhi. Although often accompanied by rash, an inoculation lesion has not been observed as it is with many tick- and mite-transmitted rickettsioses. We describe a patient with murine typhus and an unusual cutaneous manifestation at the site of rickettsial inoculation.
Project description:Tick-borne rickettsioses present a significant public health threat among emerging tick-borne diseases. In Tunisia, little is known about tick-borne <i>Rickettsia</i> pathogens. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the presence of <i>Rickettsia</i> species in small ruminant ticks from Tunisia. Adult ticks (<i>n</i> = 694) were collected from goats and sheep in northern Tunisia. Obtained ticks were identified as <i>Rhipicephalus turanicus</i> (<i>n</i> = 434) and <i>Rhipicephalus sanguineus</i> sensu lato (<i>n</i> = 260). Selected ticks (<i>n</i> = 666) were screened for the presence of <i>Rickettsia</i> spp. by PCR targeting a partial sequence of the <i>ompB</i> gene followed by sequence analysis. Rickettsial DNA was detected in 122 (18.3%) tested tick samples. The infection rates in <i>Rh. turanicus</i> and <i>Rh. sanguineus</i> s.l. ticks were 23.4 and 9.5%, respectively. The overall prevalence of rickettsial DNA was markedly higher in ticks collected from goats (23.2%) compared to those infesting sheep (7.9%). The detection of rickettsial DNA was significantly higher in ticks from the governorate of Beja (39.0%) than those from the governorate of Bizerte (13.9%). Two additional genes, the outer membrane protein A gene (<i>ompA</i>) and the citrate synthase gene (<i>gltA</i>), were also targeted for further characterization of the detected <i>Rickettsia</i> species. Genotyping and phylogenetic analysis based on partial sequences (<i>n</i> = 106) of the three different genes revealed that positive ticks are infected with different isolates of two Spotted Fever Group (SFG) <i>Rickettsia</i>, namely, <i>Rickettsia massiliae</i> and <i>Rickettsia monacensis</i>, closely related to those infecting camels and associated ticks from Tunisia, and humans and small ruminant ticks from neighboring countries like Italy, France, and Spain.