Volume 82, Issue 5
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



Cutaneous leishmaniasis, caused by , has recently emerged in urban and rural foci of central and northern Israel, and constitutes a major public health concern. Rock hyraxes (), the suspected natural reservoir, were trapped in the cutaneous leishmaniasis urban focus of Maale Adumim in central Israel and evaluated for infection by real-time kinetoplast DNA (kDNA) polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and serology. Real-time PCR on blood and computerized western blot serology analysis was positive for in 58% and 80%, respectively, of the hyraxes tested. Phylogenetic analysis of the ribosomal internal transcribed spacer 1 region indicated that similar genotypes were present in humans and hyraxes from the same habitat. The high rates of infection and exposure to among hyraxes supports their involvement in the transmission cycle of this parasite, and their potential role as a reservoir for human disease.


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  • Received : 02 Sep 2009
  • Accepted : 13 Dec 2009

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