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Genetic diversity of Bartonella genotypes found in the striped field mouse (Apodemus agrarius) in Central Europe



We investigated the diversity of Bartonella in Apodemus agrarius, an important rodent of peri-domestic habitats, which has spread into Europe in the past 1000 years. Spleen samples of 344 A. agrarius from Eastern Slovakia were screened for the presence of Bartonella spp. using 16S–23S rRNA internal transcribed spacer region and bacteria were detected in 9% of rodents. Based on sequencing of three housekeeping genes (gltA, rpoB and groEL) Bartonella genotypes were ascribed to the species typical for mice and voles: B. grahamii, B. taylorii and B. birtlesii. However, the study also confirmed presence of genotypes belonging to the B. clarridgeiae/B. rochalimae clade, and the B. elizabethae/B. tribocorum clade, which are not commonly found in woodland rodents. In addition, a potential recombination event between these two genotypes was noted, which highlights an important role of A. agrarius in shaping Bartonella diversity and evolution.


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*Corresponding author: Department of Vector-Borne Diseases, Institute of Parasitology SAS, Hlinkova 3, 040 01 Košice, Slovakia. E-mail:


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Genetic diversity of Bartonella genotypes found in the striped field mouse (Apodemus agrarius) in Central Europe



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