DETECTION OF A Rickettsia GENOTYPE RELATED TO THE OLD WORLD INFECTING Amblyomma sculptum TICK IN AN ENDEMIC AREA OF BRAZILIAN SPOTTED FEVER
Brazilian Spotted Fever is an important tick-borne disease caused by Rickettsia rickettsii and transmitted mainly by the human-biting tick Amblyomma sculptum. During an epidemiological surveillance in Pedro Leopoldo, an endemic area of Minas Gerais State, southeastern Brazil, ectoparasites were collected from vertebrate hosts and from the environment. Rickettsial genes were obtained from a male A. sculptum and the resulting phylogenetic tree grouped this bacterium with Rickettsia sp. isolate Pampulha, a strain closely related to the pathogenic species Rickettsia tamurae and Rickettsia monacensis. This is the first report of sequences
phylogenetically related to R. tamurae and R. monacensis infecting A. sculptum in Brazil.
KEY WORDS: Spotted Fever Group Rickettsia; Amblyomma sculptum; Spotted Fever focus;
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