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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7(3), 814-826; doi:10.3390/ijerph7030814
Review

Molecular Epidemiology for Vector Research on Leishmaniasis

1,* , 2
, 3,4
, 5
, 6
 and 7
1 Department of Veterinary Hygiene, Faculty of Agriculture, Yamaguchi University, Yamaguchi 753-8515, Japan 2 Departamento de Oncocercosis, Servicio Nacional de Erradicacion de la Malaria, Ministerio de Salud Publica, Guayaquil 10833, Ecuador 3 Sección de Entomología, Instituto de Medicina Tropical “Daniel A. Carrion”, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos, Lima, Lima 1, Perú 4 Laboratorio de Entomología, Instituto Nacional de Salud, Lima, Lima 11, Perú 5 Department of Dermatology, Faculty of Medicine, University of the Ryukyus, Okinawa 903-0125, Japan 6 Department of Microbiology, School of Health Sciences, Kumamoto University, Kumamoto 862-0976, Japan 7 Department of Parasitology, Kochi Medical School, Kochi University, Kochi 783-8505, Japan
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 9 December 2009 / Revised: 3 February 2010 / Accepted: 16 February 2010 / Published: 5 March 2010
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Epidemiology)
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Abstract

Leishmaniasis is a protozoan disease caused by the genus Leishmania transmitted by female phlebotomine sand flies. Surveillance of the prevalence of Leishmania and responsive vector species in endemic and surrounding areas is important for predicting the risk and expansion of the disease. Molecular biological methods are now widely applied to epidemiological studies of infectious diseases including leishmaniasis. These techniques are used to detect natural infections of sand fly vectors with Leishmania protozoa and are becoming powerful tools due to their sensitivity and specificity. Recently, genetic analyses have been performed on sand fly species and genotyping using PCR-RFLP has been applied to the sand fly taxonomy. In addition, a molecular mass screening method has been established that enables both sand fly species and natural leishmanial infections to be identified simultaneously in hundreds of sand flies with limited effort. This paper reviews recent advances in the study of sand flies, vectors of leishmaniasis, using molecular biological approaches.
Keywords: Leishmania; sand fly; epidemiology; mass screening Leishmania; sand fly; epidemiology; mass screening
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Kato, H.; Gomez, E.A.; Cáceres, A.G.; Uezato, H.; Mimori, T.; Hashiguchi, Y. Molecular Epidemiology for Vector Research on Leishmaniasis. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2010, 7, 814-826.

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