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dc.contributor.authorMartín-Martín, Inés 
dc.contributor.authorJimenez, Maribel 
dc.contributor.authorGonzález, Estela 
dc.contributor.authorEguiluz, Cesar 
dc.contributor.authorMolina, Ricardo
dc.identifier.citationVet Res. 2015; 46:138
dc.description.abstractA human leishmaniasis outbreak is occurring in the Madrid region, Spain, with the parasite and vector involved being Leishmania infantum and Phlebotomus perniciosus respectively. The aim of this study was to investigate the virulence of L. infantum isolates from the focus using a natural transmission model. Hamsters were infected by intraperitoneal inoculation (IP) or by bites of sand flies experimentally infected with L. infantum isolates obtained from P. perniciosus collected in the outbreak area (IPER/ES/2012/BOS1FL1 and IPER/ES/2012/POL2FL6) and a well characterized L. infantum strain JPCM5 (MCAN/ES/98/LLM-877). Hamster infections were monitored by clinical examination, serology, culture, parasite burden, Giemsa-stained imprints, PCR, histopathology and xenodiagnostic studies. Establishment of infection of L. infantum was achieved with the JPCM5 strain and outbreak isolates by both P. perniciosus infective bites or IP route. However, high virulence of BOS1FL1 and POL2FL6 isolates was highlighted by the clinical outcome of disease, high parasite detection in spleen and liver, high parasitic loads and positivity of Leishmania serology. Transmission by bite of POL2FL6 infected flies generated a slower progression of clinical disease than IP infection, but both groups were infective to P. perniciosus by xenodiagnosis at 2 months post-infection. Conversely, hamsters inoculated with JPCM5 were not infective to sand flies. Histopathology studies confirmed the wide spread of POL2FL6 parasites to several organs. A visceral leishmaniasis model that mimics the natural transmission in nature allowed us to highlight the high virulence of isolates that are circulating in the focus. These findings contribute to a better understanding of the outbreak epidemiology.
dc.description.sponsorshipThis study was partially funded by the Spanish Ministry of Science & Innovation (Project AGL2008‑01592) and by the EU grant FP7‑2011‑261504 EDENext. The paper is catalogued by the EDENext Steering Committee as EDENext372. We would like to thank the Veterinary Unit (ISCIII) for animal handling, Histopathology Unit (ISCIII) for histology sections preparation, Sonia Hernández for excellent sand fly rearing and Ancare Velasco for technical work. We would like to dedicate this work to the memory of Cesar Eguiluz who sadly passed away during the course of revision of this paper.
dc.publisherBioMed Central
dc.relation.isversionofPublisher's version
dc.subjectLeishmania infantum
dc.titleNatural transmission of Leishmania infantum through experimentally infected Phlebotomus perniciosus highlights the virulence of Leishmania parasites circulating in the human visceral leishmaniasis outbreak in Madrid, Spain
dc.rights.licenseAtribución 4.0 Internacional*
dc.contributor.funderMinisterio de Ciencia e Innovación (España)
dc.contributor.funder7º Programa Marco-Comisión Europea
dc.identifier.journalVeterinary Research
dc.repisalud.centroISCIII::Centro Nacional de Microbiología::Unidades Comunes Científico-Técnicas (UCCT)::Unidad de Veterinaria

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