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Article

Hedgehogs and Squirrels as Hosts of Zoonotic Bartonella Species

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Department of Parasitology, Faculty of Science, Charles University, 12800 Prague, Czech Republic
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Institute of Parasitology, Biology Center, Czech Academy of Sciences, 37005 Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic
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Military Health Institute, Military Medical Agency, 16200 Prague, Czech Republic
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Koret School of Veterinary Medicine, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Rehovot 76100, Israel
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Center for Infectious Disease Control, National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, 3721 Bilthoven, The Netherlands
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Department of Infectious Diseases and Preventive Medicine, Veterinary Research Institute, 62100 Brno, Czech Republic
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Department of Pathology and Parasitology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Veterinary Sciences, 61242 Brno, Czech Republic
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Central European Institute of Technology, University of Veterinary Sciences, 61242 Brno, Czech Republic
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Department of Botany and Zoology, Faculty of Science, Masaryk University, 61137 Brno, Czech Republic
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Lawrence S. Young
Pathogens 2021, 10(6), 686; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10060686
Received: 11 May 2021 / Revised: 28 May 2021 / Accepted: 29 May 2021 / Published: 1 June 2021
(This article belongs to the Section Emerging Pathogens)
Free-living animals frequently play a key role in the circulation of various zoonotic vector-borne pathogens. Bacteria of the genus Bartonella are transmitted by blood-feeding arthropods and infect a large range of mammals. Although only several species have been identified as causative agents of human disease, it has been proposed that any Bartonella species found in animals may be capable of infecting humans. Within a wide-ranging survey in various geographical regions of the Czech Republic, cadavers of accidentally killed synurbic mammalian species, namely Eurasian red squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris), European hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus) and Northern white-breasted hedgehog (Erinaceus roumanicus), were sampled and tested for Bartonella presence using multiple PCR reaction approach targeting several DNA loci. We demonstrate that cadavers constitute an available and highly useful source of biological material for pathogen screening. High infection rates of Bartonella spp., ranging from 24% to 76%, were confirmed for all three tested mammalian species, and spleen, ear, lung and liver tissues were demonstrated as the most suitable for Bartonella DNA detection. The wide spectrum of Bartonella spp. that were identified includes three species with previously validated zoonotic potential, B. grahamii, B. melophagi and B. washoensis, accompanied by ‘Candidatus B. rudakovii’ and two putative novel species, Bartonella sp. ERIN and Bartonella sp. SCIER. View Full-Text
Keywords: Bartonella grahamii; B. melophagi; B. rochalimae; B. washoensis; ‘Candidatus B. rudakovii’; hedgehogs; squirrels; multiple PCR; vector-borne diseases; zoonoses Bartonella grahamii; B. melophagi; B. rochalimae; B. washoensis; Candidatus B. rudakovii’; hedgehogs; squirrels; multiple PCR; vector-borne diseases; zoonoses
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MDPI and ACS Style

Majerová, K.; Gutiérrez, R.; Fonville, M.; Hönig, V.; Papežík, P.; Hofmannová, L.; Lesiczka, P.M.; Nachum-Biala, Y.; Růžek, D.; Sprong, H.; Harrus, S.; Modrý, D.; Votýpka, J. Hedgehogs and Squirrels as Hosts of Zoonotic Bartonella Species. Pathogens 2021, 10, 686. https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10060686

AMA Style

Majerová K, Gutiérrez R, Fonville M, Hönig V, Papežík P, Hofmannová L, Lesiczka PM, Nachum-Biala Y, Růžek D, Sprong H, Harrus S, Modrý D, Votýpka J. Hedgehogs and Squirrels as Hosts of Zoonotic Bartonella Species. Pathogens. 2021; 10(6):686. https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10060686

Chicago/Turabian Style

Majerová, Karolina, Ricardo Gutiérrez, Manoj Fonville, Václav Hönig, Petr Papežík, Lada Hofmannová, Paulina Maria Lesiczka, Yaarit Nachum-Biala, Daniel Růžek, Hein Sprong, Shimon Harrus, David Modrý, and Jan Votýpka. 2021. "Hedgehogs and Squirrels as Hosts of Zoonotic Bartonella Species" Pathogens 10, no. 6: 686. https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens10060686

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