II — Feral Reservoirs of Leishmaniasis on the Island of Zakinthos
Cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) caused by Leishmania tropica (Garifallou et al., 1984) and visceral leishmaniasis (VL) caused by L.donovani (Tzamouranis et al., 1984) both occur in Greece generally, including the Ionian Island of Zakinthos. Dogs infected with L.d.infantum serve as a domestic reservoir of human VL. Since dogs show no resistance to infection, succumbing readily, it is doubtful that they are the primary reservoir of L.d.infantum. Foxes and jackals have been found infected in other parts of the world and carnivores like these are probably the primary source of VL, which is transmitted to dogs and then to man (see Abranches, this publication). L.tropica is said to be anthroponotic, but the paucity of human cases in many places suggests that it, too, is a zoonosis and has a wild reservoir. The search for possible feral hosts of leishmanial parasites in a small island like Zakinthos is simplified, since relatively few possibilities exist. Only 12 wild mammalian species have been recorded on Zakinthos, two of which are carnivores and five are rodents (Table 1). Besides man, carnivores and rodents are the only mammalian Orders known to be infected with leishmanial parasites in the Old World.
KeywordsVisceral Leishmaniasis Cutaneous Leishmaniasis Wild Mammal Stone Marten Rattus Rattus
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- Tzamouranis, N., Schnur, L.F., Garifallou, A., Pateraki, E., and Sérié, C., Leishmaniasis in Greece I. Isolation and identification of the parasite causing human and canine leishmaniasis, Ann. Trop. Med. Parasit., 78:363.Google Scholar