Interactions Between Trypanosoma cruzi the Chagas Disease Parasite and Naturally Infected Wild Mepraia Vectors of Chile
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Chagas disease, which ranks among the world's most neglected diseases, is a chronic, systemic, parasitic infection caused by the protozoan Trypanosoma cruzi. Mepraia species are the wild vectors of this parasite in Chile. Host-parasite interactions can occur at several levels, such as co-speciation and ecological host fitting, among others. Thus, we are exploring the interactions between T. cruzi circulating in naturally infected Mepraia species in all areas endemic of Chile. We evaluated T. cruzi infection rates of 27 different haplotypes of the wild Mepraia species and identified their parasite genotypes using minicircle PCR amplification and hybridization tests with genotype-specific DNA probes. Infection rates were lower in northern Chile where Mepraia gajardoi circulates (10-35%); in central Chile, Mepraia spinolai is most abundant, and infection rates varied in space and time (0-55%). T. cruzi discrete typing units (DTUs) TcI, TcII, TcV, and Tc VI were detected. Mixed infections with two or more DTUs are frequently found in highly infected insects. T. cruzi DTUs have distinct, but not exclusive, ecological and epidemiological associations with their hosts. T. cruzi infection rates of M. spinolai were higher than in M. gajardoi, but the presence of mixed infection with more than one T. cruzi DTU was the same. The same T. cruzi DTUs (TcI, TcII, TcV, and TcVI) were found circulating in both vector species, even though TcI was not equally distributed. These results suggest that T. cruzi DTUs are not associated with any of the two genetically related vector species nor with the geographic area. The T. cruzi vectors interactions are discussed in terms of old and recent events. By exploring T. cruzi DTUs present in Mepraia haplotypes and species from northern to central Chile, we open the analysis on these invertebrate host-parasite interactions.
Artículo de publicación ISI
DOI: DOI: 10.1089/vbz.2015.1850
Cita del ítemVector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases Volumen: 16 Número: 3 Páginas: 165-171 (2016)
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