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Vector Borne Zoonotic Dis. 2012 Jul;12(7):564-7. doi: 10.1089/vbz.2011.0845. Epub 2012 May 18.

Bartonella quintana in head lice from Sénégal.

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Université de la Méditerranée, Faculté de Médecine, Marseille, France.


Head and body lice are strict, obligate human ectoparasites with three mitochondrial clades (A, B, and C). Body lice have been implicated as vectors of human diseases, and as the principal vectors of epidemic typhus, relapsing fever, and Bartonella quintata-associated diseases (trench fever, bacillary angiomatosis, endocarditis, chronic bacteremia, and chronic lymphadenopathy). Using molecular methods (real-time and traditional PCR), we assessed the presence of Bartonella quintana DNA in black head lice collected from three locations in Sénégal. DNA from B. quintana was identified in 19 lice (6.93%) collected from 7 patients (7%) in Dakar. B. quintana-positive lice collected from three subjects were identified as clades C and A.

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