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Covadonga Alonso, Manuel Borca, Linda Dixon, Yolanda Revilla, Fernando Rodriguez, Jose M Escribano, Ictv Report Consortium
The family Asfarviridae includes the single species African swine fever virus, isolates of which have linear dsDNA genomes of 170-194 kbp. Virions have an internal core, an internal lipid membrane, an icosahedral capsid and an outer lipid envelope. Infection of domestic pigs and wild boar results in an acute haemorrhagic fever with transmission by contact or ingestion, or by ticks of the genus Ornithodoros. Indigenous pigs act as reservoirs in Africa, where infection is endemic, and from where introductions occur periodically to Europe...
March 22, 2018: Journal of General Virology
Vienna R Brown, Sarah N Bevins
African swine fever (ASF) is caused by African swine fever virus (ASFV), which can cause substantial morbidity and mortality events in swine. The virus can be transmitted via direct and indirect contacts with infected swine, their products, or competent vector species, especially Ornithodoros ticks. Africa and much of Eastern Europe are endemic for ASF; a viral introduction to countries that are currently ASF free could have severe economic consequences due to the loss of production from infected animals and the trade restrictions that would likely be imposed as a result of an outbreak...
2018: Frontiers in Veterinary Science
Jonathan G Gerhart, H Auguste Dutcher, Amanda E Brenner, Abraham S Moses, Libor Grubhoffer, Rahul Raghavan
Bacterial endosymbionts of ticks are of interest due to their close evolutionary relationships with tick-vectored pathogens. For instance, while many ticks contain Francisella-like endosymbionts (FLEs), others transmit the mammalian pathogen Francisella tularensis. We recently sequenced the genome of an FLE present in the hard tick Amblyomma maculatum (FLE-Am) and showed that it likely evolved from a pathogenic ancestor. In order to expand our understanding of FLEs, in the current study we sequenced the genome of an FLE in the soft tick Ornithodoros moubata (FLE-Om) and compared it to the genomes of FLE-Am, F...
January 29, 2018: Genome Biology and Evolution
Melissa Judith Chalada, John Stenos, Gemma Vincent, Dayana Barker, Richard Stewart Bradbury
Central Queensland (CQ) is a large and isolated, low population density, remote tropical region of Australia with a varied environment. The region has a diverse fauna and several species of ticks that feed upon that fauna. This study examined 518 individual ticks: 177 Rhipicephalus sanguineus (brown dog tick), 123 Haemaphysalis bancrofti (wallaby tick), 102 Rhipicephalus australis (Australian cattle tick), 47 Amblyomma triguttatum (ornate kangaroo tick), 57 Ixodes holocyclus (paralysis tick), 9 Bothriocroton tachyglossi (CQ short-beaked echidna tick), and 3 Ornithodoros capensis (seabird soft tick)...
January 16, 2018: Vector Borne and Zoonotic Diseases
Gabriela Kleinerman, Roni King, Yaarit Nachum-Biala, Gad Baneth
Tick-borne relapsing fever (TBRF) is an acute infectious disease caused by arthropod-borne spirochetes of the genus Borrelia and characterized by recurrent episodes of fever. Borrelia persica, the causative agent of this disease in Israel, is transmitted by the argasid tick Ornithodoros tholozani. There is little information about the maintenance and possible vertebrate reservoirs of B. persica in nature, but the tick O. tholozani is known to feed on animals that enter its habitat in caves, rock crevices and shady environments...
December 9, 2017: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
L Vial, E Ducheyne, S Filatov, A Gerilovych, D S McVey, I Sindryakova, S Morgunov, A A Pérez de León, D Kolbasov, E M De Clercq
Ticks are economically and medically important ectoparasites due to the injuries inflicted through their bite, and their ability to transmit pathogens to humans, livestock, and wildlife. Whereas hard ticks have been intensively studied, little is known about soft ticks, even though they can also transmit pathogens, including African Swine Fever Virus (ASFV) affecting domestic and wild suids or Borrelia bacteria causing tick-borne relapsing fever (TBRF) in humans. We thus developed a regional model to identify suitable spatial areas for a community of nine Ornithodoros tick species (O...
January 15, 2018: Veterinary Parasitology
Brandi N Williamson, Tom G Schwan
Ixodid and argasid ticks may hyperparasitize other individuals of their own species to acquire a blood meal, however most accounts are based on single observations and the behavior has rarely been studied. While maintaining laboratory colonies of Ornithodoros species, we noticed that unfed ticks occasionally fed on other ticks that were feeding on mice, and unfed ticks parasitized engorged ticks when confined together in tubes. Therefore, we investigated hyperparasitism by Ornithodoros hermsi and the ability of these ticks to acquire and transmit the relapsing fever spirochete Borrelia hermsii when feeding on other ticks...
February 2018: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
Sandra J Raffel, Brandi N Williamson, Tom G Schwan, Frank C Gherardini
Relapsing fever (RF) in North America is caused primarily by the spirochete Borrelia hermsii and is associated with the bite of its tick vector Ornithodoros hermsi. Although this spirochete was known long before the discovery of the Lyme disease (LD) spirochete, Borrelia burgdorferi, basic methods to facilitate the study of B. hermsii have lagged behind. One important technique to expedite the study of the molecular biology and pathogenesis of B. hermsii would be a reliable method to grow and clone these bacteria in solid medium, which we now describe...
February 2018: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
G Neelakanta, H Sultana, D E Sonenshine, J F Andersen
Lipocalins are low molecular weight membrane transporters that are abundantly expressed in the salivary glands and other tissues of ticks. In this study, we identified a lipocalin-like molecule, designated as otlip, from the soft ticks Ornithodoros turicata, the vector for the relapsing fever causing spirochete Borrelia turicatae. We noted that the expression of otlip was developmentally regulated, with adult ticks expressing significantly higher levels in comparison to the larvae or nymphal ticks. Expression of otlip was evident in both fed and unfed O...
November 22, 2017: Insect Molecular Biology
Ismail Lafri, Basma El Hamzaoui, Idir Bitam, Hamza Leulmi, Reda Lalout, Oleg Mediannikov, Mohamed Chergui, Mohamed Karakellah, Didier Raoult, Philippe Parola
BACKGROUND: Argasid ticks (soft ticks) are blood-feeding arthropods that can parasitize rodents, birds, humans, livestock and companion animals. Ticks of the Ornithodoros genus are known to be vectors of relapsing fever borreliosis in humans. In Algeria, little is known about relapsing fever borreliosis and other bacterial pathogens transmitted by argasid ticks. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Between May 2013 and October 2015, we investigated the presence of soft ticks in 20 rodent burrows, 10 yellow-legged gull (Larus michahellis) nests and animal shelters in six locations in two different bioclimatic zones in Algeria...
November 2017: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
Neelu Sharma, Veer Singh, K P Shyma, H R Parsani
Ticks have massive capacity of acting as vectors of numerous pathogens that affect human, livestock and pets, which owes to their medical and veterinary importance. In animals, tick infestations are much more severe than in humans. Animals can be parasitized by hundreds or even thousands of ticks, which then proliferates the effect on the host. In almost all tropical and subtropical countries like India not only the hard ticks (Ixodidae) but also the soft ticks (Agrasidae) are responsible for economic losses either by direct injuries or disease transmission...
December 2017: Journal of Parasitic Diseases: Official Organ of the Indian Society for Parasitology
Kylie M Sage, Tammi L Johnson, Michael B Teglas, Nathan C Nieto, Tom G Schwan
Tick-borne relapsing fever in western North America is a zoonosis caused by the spirochete bacterium, Borrelia hermsii, which is transmitted by the bite of infected Ornithodoros hermsi ticks. The pathogen is maintained in natural cycles involving small rodent hosts such as chipmunks and tree squirrels, as well as the tick vector. In order for these ticks to establish sustained and viable populations, a narrow set of environmental parameters must exist, primarily moderate temperatures and moderate to high amounts of precipitation...
October 2017: PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases
May Hokan, Christina Strube, Ute Radespiel, Elke Zimmermann
BACKGROUND: A central question in evolutionary parasitology is to what extent ecology impacts patterns of parasitism in wild host populations. In this study, we aim to disentangle factors influencing the risk of parasite exposure by exploring the impact of sleeping site ecology on infection with ectoparasites and vector-borne hemoparasites in two sympatric primates endemic to Madagascar. Both species live in the same dry deciduous forest of northwestern Madagascar and cope with the same climatic constraints, they are arboreal, nocturnal, cat-sized and pair-living but differ prominently in sleeping site ecology...
2017: Frontiers in Zoology
C J Quembo, F Jori, W Vosloo, L Heath
African swine fever virus (ASFV) is one of the most threatening infectious diseases of pigs. There are not sufficient data to indicate the importance of the sylvatic cycle in the spread and maintenance of the disease locally and potentially, globally. To assess the capacity to maintain ASF in the environment, we investigated the presence of soft tickreservoirs of ASFV in Gorongosa National Park (GNP) and its surrounding villages. A total of 1,658 soft ticks were recovered from warthog burrows and pig pens at the wildlife/livestock interface of the GNP and viral DNA was confirmed by nested PCR in 19% of Ornithodoros porcinus porcinus and 15% of O...
September 17, 2017: Transboundary and Emerging Diseases
R Pérez-Sánchez, A Oleaga
Ornithodoros erraticus and Ornithodoros moubata are argasid tick vectors that transmit severe diseases such as African swine fever and human relapsing fever. Elimination of the synanthropic populations of these vectors would facilitate the control of these diseases. Fluralaner is a novel isoxazoline that selectively blocks the GABA- and glutamate-gated channels, providing potent insecticidal and acaricidal activity. The aim of the current study was to provide quantitative data on the susceptibility of males, females and third nymphal instar of O...
August 30, 2017: Veterinary Parasitology
Ana Oleaga, Prosper Obolo-Mvoulouga, Raúl Manzano-Román, Ricardo Pérez-Sánchez
BACKGROUND: The argasid tick Ornithodoros moubata is the main African vector of the human relapsing fever agent Borrelia duttoni and the African swine fever virus. Together with saliva, the tick midgut forms part of the host-tick-pathogen interface, and numerous midgut proteins play key functions in the blood digestion-related process and the infection and transmission of pathogens. This work explores the composition of the midgut proteome of unfed and fed O. moubata females with the aim to complete the biological information already obtained from the midgut transcriptome and provide a more robust and comprehensive perspective of this biological system...
August 1, 2017: Parasites & Vectors
Gabriel Alves Landulfo, José Salvatore Leister Patané, Dalton Giovanni Nogueira da Silva, Inácio Loiola Meirelles Junqueira-de-Azevedo, Ronaldo Zucatelli Mendonca, Simone Michaela Simons, Eneas de Carvalho, Darci Moraes Barros-Battesti
Ornithodoros mimon is an argasid tick that parasitizes bats, birds and opossums and is also harmful to humans. Knowledge of the transcripts present in the tick gut helps in understanding the role of vital molecules in the digestion process and parasite-host relationship, while also providing information about the evolution of arthropod hematophagy. Thus, the present study aimed to know and ascertain the main molecules expressed in the gut of argasid after their blood meal, through analysis on the gut transcriptome of engorged females of O...
April 2017: Revista Brasileira de Parasitologia Veterinária, Brazilian Journal of Veterinary Parasitology
Tina Zavašnik-Bergant, Robert Vidmar, Andreja Sekirnik, Marko Fonović, Jiří Salát, Lenka Grunclová, Petr Kopáček, Boris Turk
To ensure successful feeding tick saliva contains a number of inhibitory proteins that interfere with the host immune response and help to create a permissive environment for pathogen transmission. Among the potential targets of the salivary cystatins are two host cysteine proteases, cathepsin S, which is essential for antigen- and invariant chain-processing, and cathepsin C (dipeptidyl peptidase 1, DPP1), which plays a critical role in processing and activation of the granule serine proteases. Here, the effect of salivary cystatin OmC2 from Ornithodoros moubata was studied using differentiated MUTZ-3 cells as a model of immature dendritic cells of the host skin...
2017: Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology
Marlene Dupraz, Céline Toty, Elodie Devillers, Thomas Blanchon, Eric Elguero, Marion Vittecoq, Sara Moutailler, Karen D McCoy
The epidemiology of vector-borne zoonoses depends on the movement of both hosts and vectors, which can differ greatly in intensity across spatial scales. Because of their life history traits and small size, vector dispersal may be frequent, but limited in distance. However, little information is available on vector movement patterns at local spatial scales, and particularly for ticks, transmitting the greatest diversity of recognized infectious agents. To test the degree to which ticks can disperse and disseminate pathogens at local scales, we investigated the temporal dynamics and population structure of the soft tick Ornithodoros maritimus within a colony of its seabird host, the Yellow-legged gull Larus michahellis...
August 2017: International Journal for Parasitology. Parasites and Wildlife
Ana Oleaga, Prosper Obolo-Mvoulouga, Raúl Manzano-Román, Ricardo Pérez-Sánchez
The argasid tick Ornithodoros moubata is the main vector of the African swine fever and the human relapsing fever in Africa. As part of the host-parasite-pathogen interface, the tick midgut expresses key proteins for tick survival and tick-borne pathogen transmission. Accordingly, midgut proteins are potential targets for the development of new drugs and vaccines aimed at tick control, and obtaining proteomic and transcriptomic data from the O. moubata midgut would facilitate the identification of such target candidates...
August 2017: Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases
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