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Research (Published online: 30-09-2015)

18. Epidemiological surveillance of capybaras and ticks on warning area for Brazilian spotted fever - José Brites-Neto, Jardel Brasil and Keila Maria Roncato Duarte

Veterinary World, 8(9): 1143-1149



   doi: 10.14202/vetworld.2015.1143-1149


José Brites-Neto: Department of Epidemiological Surveillance, Secretariat of Health, Americana, São Paulo, Brazil;

Jardel Brasil: Department of Epidemiological Surveillance, Secretariat of Health, Americana, São Paulo, Brazil;

Keila Maria Roncato Duarte: Department of Genetics and Animal Reproduction, Institute of Animal Science, Nova Odessa, São Paulo, Brazil;


Received: 05-03-2015, Revised: 19-08-2015, Accepted: 28-08-2015, Published online: 30-09-2015


Corresponding author: José Brites-Neto, e-mail:

Citation: Brites-Neto J, Brasil J, Duarte KMR (2015) Epidemiological surveillance of capybaras and ticks on warning area for Brazilian spotted fever, Veterinary World 8(9):1143-1149.

Aim: The vulnerability of tropical developing countries to the emerging disease constitutes a critical phenomenon in which the invasion of wild niches by human hosts, contributes to expansion of zoonotic diseases, such as the Brazilian spotted fever (BSF). This study performed a diagnosis of species occurrence of their hosts (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris) and vectors (Amblyomma sculptum and Amblyomma dubitatum) on the warning area for this reemerging disease in Brazil.

Materials and Methods: The study was conducted in a warning area for BSF in the city of Americana, São Paulo state. The occurrence of capybaras was registered by use of binoculars and GPS equipment and 24 acarological researches were performed through 180 CO2 traps. Samples of adult ticks were dissected for salivary glands removal, DNA extraction, and evaluation by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) being tested by initial gltA-PCR, ompA-PCR, and Rickettsia bellii-specific PCR, with the positive samples subjected to sequencing.

Results: Eleven clusters of capybaras (total of 71 individuals), were observed along the riparian of Ribeirão Quilombo and 7,114 specimens of A. sculptum and 7,198 specimens of A. dubitatum were collected in this same area. About 568 samples of adult ticks were dissected for salivary glands removal, DNA extraction and evaluation by gltA-PCR, with results of 1.94% (11/568) of positive samples. Results for the initial gltA-PCR indicated none positive sample to Rickettsia species into A. sculptum and 11 positive samples to A. dubitatum. These samples were negative to the ompA-PCR and positive to the Rickettsia bellii-specific PCR protocol and subjected to DNA sequencing, whose result indicated 100% similarity to Rickettsia bellii. The distribution of tick species A. sculptum and A. dubitatum was configured regarding to the biotic potential of the riparian areas, measuring the risks for BSF in peri-urban areas of Americana.

Conclusion: These results confirmed a status of epidemiological warning with a strong association of the amplifiers hosts of Rickettsia and tick vectors for the transmission of BSF to humans in this region.

Keywords: acarological research, Amblyomma dubitatum, Amblyomma sculptum, Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris, riparian forests, Rickettsia spp.

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