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Ann Trop Med Parasitol. 2003 Apr;97(3):269-80.

Hantavirus infection in people inhabiting a highly endemic region of the Gran Chaco territory, Paraguay: association with Trypanosoma cruzi infection, epidemiological features and haematological characteristics.

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New Bolton Center, University of Pennsylvania, 382 West Street Road, Kennett Square, PA 19348, USA.


The seroprevalences of anti-hantavirus antibodies were determined in 712 individuals (551 Indians, 140 Mennonites of German ancestry, and 21 Paraguayans of Spanish ancestry) inhabiting a region of western Paraguay in the Gran Chaco territory of South America. The overall seroprevalence of hantavirus infection among the 712 subjects, who were aged 2-80 years, was 42.7% (45.2% in the Indians and 34.2% in the non-Indians). Of the 672 subjects also checked for antibodies against Trypanosoma cruzi, 226 (33.6%) were seropositive for this protozoan parasite. The results of a multivariate regression analysis indicated that, after adjusting for age, sex, setting of residence (rural/urban) and infection with the human T-cell leukaemia/lymphoma virus type II (HTLV-II), a T. cruzi-seropositive individual was 1.73 times more likely to be hantavirus seropositive than a T. cruzi-seronegative individual. Living in a rural setting increased the risk of being hantavirus seropositive 2.17-fold. In both the Indians and non-Indian subpopulations, hantavirus seroprevalence increased with age in both sexes, but only in the non-Indian supopulation was this increase significantly greater in males than in females. Hantavirus seropositivity was significantly associated with thrombocytosis, even after adjusting for the relevant confounders.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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