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The helminth community of a population of Rattus norvegicus from an urban Brazilian slum and the threat of zoonotic diseases

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 November 2017

Ticiana Carvalho-Pereira*
Affiliation:
Federal University of Bahia, UFBA, Salvador, Brazil Instituto Gonçalo Moniz, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Ministério da Saúde, Salvador, Brazil
Fábio N. Souza
Affiliation:
Instituto Gonçalo Moniz, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Ministério da Saúde, Salvador, Brazil
Luana R. N. Santos
Affiliation:
Instituto Gonçalo Moniz, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Ministério da Saúde, Salvador, Brazil
Ruth Walker
Affiliation:
Instituto Gonçalo Moniz, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Ministério da Saúde, Salvador, Brazil
Arsinoê C. Pertile
Affiliation:
Instituto Gonçalo Moniz, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Ministério da Saúde, Salvador, Brazil
Daiana S. de Oliveira
Affiliation:
Instituto Gonçalo Moniz, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Ministério da Saúde, Salvador, Brazil
Gabriel G. Pedra
Affiliation:
Institute of Integrative Biology, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK
Amanda Minter
Affiliation:
Institute of Integrative Biology, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK
Maria Gorete Rodrigues
Affiliation:
Centro de Controle de Zoonoses, Secretaria Municipal de Saúde, Ministério da Saúde, Salvador, Brazil
Thiago C. Bahiense
Affiliation:
Federal University of Bahia, UFBA, Salvador, Brazil
Mitermayer G. Reis
Affiliation:
Federal University of Bahia, UFBA, Salvador, Brazil Instituto Gonçalo Moniz, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Ministério da Saúde, Salvador, Brazil Department of Epidemiology of Microbial Disease, Yale School of Public Health, New Haven, USA
Peter J. Diggle
Affiliation:
Lancaster Medical School, Lancaster University, Lancaster, UK
Albert I. Ko
Affiliation:
Department of Epidemiology of Microbial Disease, Yale School of Public Health, New Haven, USA
James E. Childs
Affiliation:
Department of Epidemiology of Microbial Disease, Yale School of Public Health, New Haven, USA
Eduardo M. da Silva
Affiliation:
Federal University of Bahia, UFBA, Salvador, Brazil
Mike Begon
Affiliation:
Institute of Integrative Biology, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK
Federico Costa
Affiliation:
Federal University of Bahia, UFBA, Salvador, Brazil Instituto Gonçalo Moniz, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Ministério da Saúde, Salvador, Brazil Institute of Integrative Biology, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK Department of Epidemiology of Microbial Disease, Yale School of Public Health, New Haven, USA
*
Author for correspondence: Ticiana Carvalho-Pereira, E-mail: carvalhopereira.tsa@hotmail.com

Abstract

Urban slums provide suitable conditions for infestation by rats, which harbour and shed a wide diversity of zoonotic pathogens including helminths. We aimed to identify risk factors associated with the probability and intensity of infection of helminths of the digestive tract in an urban slum population of Rattus norvegicus. Among 299 rats, eleven species/groups of helminths were identified, of which Strongyloides sp., Nippostrongylus brasiliensis and, the human pathogen, Angiostrongylus cantonensis were the most frequent (97, 41 and 39%, respectively). Sex interactions highlighted behavioural differences between males and females, as eg males were more likely to be infected with N. brasiliensis where rat signs were present, and males presented more intense infections of Strongyloides sp. Moreover, rats in poor body condition had higher intensities of N. brasiliensis. We describe a high global richness of parasites in R. norvegicus, including five species known to cause disease in humans. Among these, A. cantonensis was found in high prevalence and it was ubiquitous in the study area – knowledge which is of public health importance. A variety of environmental, demographic and body condition variables were associated with helminth species infection of rats, suggesting a comparable variety of risk factors for humans.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2017 

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The helminth community of a population of Rattus norvegicus from an urban Brazilian slum and the threat of zoonotic diseases
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