Coexistence of Two Species of Leishmania in the Digestive Tract of the Vector Lutzomyia ovallesi

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  • Instituto de Biomedicina, Caracas, Venezuela

Leishmania isolated from the digestive tract of a naturally infected Lutzomyia ovallesi sand fly were cultured in blood agar for rapid growth, cloning, and subsequent identification through schizodeme analysis, dot-blot hybridization, use of monoclonal antibodies with various specificities and absorbed polyclonal antibodies. Twenty-three clones isolated from the primary culture were identified. The results showed that parasites belonging to some clones corresponded to the L. mexicana complex, while others belonged to the L. braziliensis complex. These results clearly establish the coexistence of two Leishmania species in the digestive tract of a single Lu. ovallesi sand fly.