Characterization of Leishmania colombiensis Sp. N (Kinetoplastida: Trypanosomatidae), a New Parasite Infecting Humans, Animals, and Phlebotomine Sand Flies in Colombia and Panama

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  • Department of Biology, Youngstown State University, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad Nacional de Colombia and Instituto Nacional de Salud, Ministerio de Salud, Departmento de Immunologia, Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, Rio de Janeiro, Division of Experimental Therapeutics and Department of Entomology, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Department of Entomology and Nematology, University of Florida, Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Yale University School of Medicine, Youngstown, Ohio, Colombia

Characterization of Leishmania colombiensis sp.n. is presented, which on the basis of biological and molecular criteria, appears to be a new member of the L. braziliensis complex. A total of nine isolates of the new parasite were made in Colombia and Panama between 1980 and 1986: two from human cases of cutaneous leishmaniasis, six from phlebotomine sand flies, and one from a sloth. Although most closely related to L. lainsoni, L. colombiensis sp.n. is clearly distinguishable from other members of the genus by its reactivity with monoclonal antibodies, isoenzyme electrophoresis, and restriction endonuclease fragment patterns of kinetoplast DNA (k-DNA).