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Leishmaniasis in Istanbul; A new epidemiological data about refugee leishmaniasis

Çizmeci, Zeynep, Karakuş, Mehmet, Karabela, Şemsi Nur, Erdoğan, Bilgen, Güleç, Nuray
Acta tropica 2019 v.195 pp. 23-27
DNA, Leishmania infantum, Leishmania tropica, Phlebotominae, epidemiology, females, hospitals, internal transcribed spacers, leishmaniasis, parasites, patients, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, staining, Turkey (country)
Leishmania is an intracellular parasite, which is transmitted by the bite of infected female Phlebotominae sand flies. Turkey is a crossroad between Europe and Asia that makes it important in terms of epidemiology. In the present study, we aimed to evaluate Leishmania infection among non-autochthonous patients admitted to Health Sciences University, Dr. Sadi Konuk Research and Training hospital between 2014−2018. Slides were prepared by sampling the edge of the lesions for each patient. Microscopical examination was performed after staining procedures. After microscopical examination slides were washed and DNA extraction was performed. ITS-1 real-time PCR was performed to identify the species of the causative agents. Demographic data were recorded for each patient. Also number, type and location of the lesions were recorded. Totally 13 patients were included in this. Majority (12/13) of them were found to be infected with L. tropica, while one patient was infected with L. infantum. Two of the lesions were wet type and 11 of them were dry type lesions. Several papers were published recently about leishmaniasis in Turkey but to best of our knowledge, this is the first study reporting refugee leishmaniasis in İstanbul.