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Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz. 2000 Sep-Oct;95(5):595-600.

Retention of Leishmania (Leishmania) mexicana in naturally infected rodents from the State of Campeche, Mexico.

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  • 1Laboratorio de Inmunología, Centro de Investigaciones Regionales 'Dr Hideyo Noguchi', Universidad Autónoma de Yucatán, Mérida, Yucatán, México.


In the State of Campeche, Mexico, zoonotic cutaneous leishmaniasis is mainly due to Leishmania (L.) mexicana. The parasite population is maintained in a mammalian species, a reservoir in which the ideal course of infection should be long and relatively nonpathogenic. The objective of the present study was to document the retention of L. (L.) mexicana in 29 naturally infected rodents. These cricetids lived in captivity for up to two years and were tested monthly for the presence of the parasite, by cultures of needle aspirates from the base of the tail. Peromyscus yucatanicus and Ototylomys phyllotis were incriminated as the primary reservoir hosts. The finding that the multiplication of parasites in P. yucatanicus might be triggered by temperature, suggests that this animal would be a good choice for further research on L. (L.) mexicana.

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