Volume 87, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



Tungiasis is a zoonosis caused by . In Brazil, tungiasis is endemic in many resource-poor communities, in which various domestic and sylvatic animals act as reservoirs. Eighty laboratory-raised Wistar rats were exposed to in areas of intense transmission: a fishing village and an urban shantytown in Ceará State, northeast Brazil. The topographic distribution of lesions in Wistar rats was compared with the distribution of lesions in humans in the same area. Our results show that the topographic distribution of embedded sand fleas was almost identical in Wistar rats and humans and that lesions were confined to the feet. In humans, 76% of all lesions were located periungually, whereas in Wistar rats, 67% of lesions were located at the distal end of the digits ( = 0.73). Both had the majority of lesions at the toes and digits: 70.2% versus 65.7% ( = 0.79). The Wistar rat model mirrors human tungiasis in topographic distribution.


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  • Received : 03 Feb 2011
  • Accepted : 03 Feb 2012
  • Published online : 02 Jul 2012

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