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Open AccessArticle

Leptospira Infection in African Green Monkeys in an Endemic Area: An Opportunity for Comparative Studies in a Natural Environment

1
School of Veterinary Medicine, Ross University, Basseterre KN 0101, Saint Kitts and Nevis
2
Behavioral Science Foundation, Basseterre KN 0101, Saint Kitts and Nevis
3
Departments of Human Genetics and Psychiatry, Faculty of Medicine, McGill University, Montréal, QC H3A 1A1, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Present address: College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32610, USA.
Present address: Bio-Techne, Minneapolis, MN 55413, USA.
Pathogens 2020, 9(6), 474; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9060474
Received: 8 May 2020 / Revised: 11 June 2020 / Accepted: 11 June 2020 / Published: 16 June 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Leptospira infections in Domestic and Wild Animal)
This study was performed to investigate the potential asymptomatic Leptospira reservoir status among African green monkeys (AGMs) in the Caribbean island of Saint Kitts, and whether there is any renal pathology associated with Leptospira exposure. Forty-eight percent of AGMs tested were positive for Leptospira antibodies by the microscopic agglutination test. Leptospira DNA was detected in 4% of kidney samples tested using a lipl32 gene based PCR. We observed minimal to severe microscopic renal lesions in 85% of the AGM kidneys evaluated. The majority of the AGMs (n = 26) had only minimal to mild interstitial nephritis and a few (n = 3) had moderate to severe lesions. The presence of interstitial nephritis was not significantly associated with Leptospira exposure. The presence of infected AGMs in a small surface limited geographic region may pose zoonotic threat to humans and animals. The impact of Leptospira infection in renal pathology in AGMs warrants further investigation. AGMs residing in a natural setting in an insular, surface limited Leptospira endemic geographic region may offer opportunities for comparative studies to advance the field of leptospirosis. Due to their similarity to humans, such studies in AGMs may also provide translational opportunities to advance Leptospira research. View Full-Text
Keywords: Leptospira; African green monkeys; Caribbean; renal lesions; zoonosis Leptospira; African green monkeys; Caribbean; renal lesions; zoonosis
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MDPI and ACS Style

Rajeev, S.; Bolfa, P.; Shiokawa, K.; Beierschmitt, A.; Palmour, R. Leptospira Infection in African Green Monkeys in an Endemic Area: An Opportunity for Comparative Studies in a Natural Environment. Pathogens 2020, 9, 474.

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