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Prevalence and Phylogenetic Analysis of Orientia tsutsugamushi in Rodents and Mites from Central India

Bhate, Ruchi, Pansare, Nilesh, Chaudhari, Sandeep P., Barbuddhe, Sukhadeo B., Choudhary, Vijay K., Kurkure, Nitin V., Kolte, Sunil W.
Vector borne and zoonotic diseases 2017 v.17 no.11 pp. 749-754
Orientia tsutsugamushi, Ornithonyssus bacoti, bacteria, blood, chiggers, genes, outer membrane proteins, phylogeny, polymerase chain reaction, rodents, scrub typhus, temperature, transmembrane proteins, India
Orientia tsutsugamushi, the causative agent of scrub typhus in humans, is an obligate intracytosolic bacterium transmitted among animals and to humans by some species of larval trombiculid mites (chiggers) and is hosted mainly by rodents. In this study, we attempted detection of O. tsutsugamushi from blood and tissue samples of rodents trapped from different locations in Central India using PCR targeting the 56 kDa outer membrane protein gene and the 47 kDa high temperature transmembrane protein gene. A total of 59 rodent samples comprising 38 of blood collected from domestic and public surroundings and 21 of tissue from agricultural farm were included in this study. The 56 kDa outer membrane protein gene was detected from 10 of 59 samples by PCR, and the 47 kDa protein gene was detected from 4 of 59 samples by nested-PCR. Mites collected from the rodents were identified as Ornithonyssus bacoti, and one of five pooled samples was found to be positive for O. tsutsugamushi using PCR targeting 56 kDa outer membrane protein gene. Thus, perpetuation of O. tsutsugamushi among rodents and mites was detected constituting a potential public health concern.