versão impressa ISSN 0120-4157
MIRANDA, Jorge et al. Surveillance of Rickettsia sp. infection in capybaras (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris) a potential model of epidemiological alert in endemic areas. Biomédica [online]. 2011, vol.31, n.2, pp. 216-221. ISSN 0120-4157.
Introduction. Capybaras (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris) are considered amplifying hosts of Rickettsia sp. These rodents are usually parasitized by the tick vector, Amblyomma cajennense, the main vector of rickettsioses in humans and animals in South America. Capybaras can be used as sentinels in detection of circulation of rickettsiae. Objective. Antibodies to rickettsiae of spotted fever group were detected in capybaras in a rural area of Cordoba Province, northern Colombia. Materials and methods. Sera were analyzed from 36 capybaras in a rural area of Monteria (village of San Jeronimo) in Córdoba. For the detection of IgG antibodies, indirect immunofluorescence was performed. The antigens were derived from R. rickettsia strain Taiaçu isolated in Brazil. Capybara sera were diluted 1:64 for IFA analysis. Ticks were collected from each capybara (also known as chigüiro) and identified to species. Results. The seroprevalence of spotted fever group Rickettsia was 22% (8 capybaras). Four sera had a titer of 1:64, 3 had a titer of 1:128 and one serum had a titer of 1:512. All ticks removed from the capybaras (n=933) were taxonomically identified as Amblyomma cajennense. Conclusion. Colombia has areas endemic for rickettsioses, as indicated by confirmed annual outbreaks. The current study reports the first evidence of natural rickettsial infection of the spotted fever group in capybaras from Colombia. The findings suggest that capybaras can be used as sentinels for the circulation of rickettsiae and can identify endemic areas for the transmission of rickettsial diseases.
Palavras-chave : Rickettsia sp; rickettsiaceae infections; rodentia; ticks; fluorescent antibody technique, indirect; Colombia.