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Eco-epidemiology of Chagas disease in northeastern Brazil: Triatoma brasiliensis, T. pseudomaculata and Rhodnius nasutus in the sylvatic, peridomestic and domestic environments


An entomological survey was carried out in four rural localities situated in the state of Ceará, assessing Chagas disease seroprevalence in man, focusing on the presence of vectors in natural foci contiguous to the domestic and peridomestic environments. Fifty-three Triatoma brasiliensis, nine T. pseudomaculata and 71 Rhodnius nasutus were collected in their natural habitats as far as 10 m from the houses, and 663, 59 and 8 respectively were captured in peridomestic artificial structures, adjacent to the houses, including henhouses, pigpens, corrals, perches and piles of bricks, tiles and wood. Within the households, 37 T. brasiliensis, one specimen of T. pseudomaculata and one of R. nasutus were captured. Overall, Trypanosoma cruzi infection rates were 2.3% for T. brasiliensis and 11.3% for R. nasutus. Despite that the seroprevalence survey in man did not reveal positive results using two serological techniques, natural triatomine habitats are juxtaposed to man-made artificial ecotopes, resulting in overlapping habitats. The contiguity between natural ecotopes and human dwellings increases the interaction between vectors and humans, challenging continuous surveillance and vector control efforts.

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Correspondence to Otília Sarquis.

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Sarquis, O., Carvalho-Costa, F.A., Toma, H.K. et al. Eco-epidemiology of Chagas disease in northeastern Brazil: Triatoma brasiliensis, T. pseudomaculata and Rhodnius nasutus in the sylvatic, peridomestic and domestic environments. Parasitol Res 110, 1481–1485 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00436-011-2651-6

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  • Triatomines
  • Ecology
  • Habitat - chagas disease