• 1

    Bugher JC, 1951. The mammalian host in yellow fever. Strode GK, ed. Yellow Fever. New York: McGraw- Hill, Inc., 299–384.

  • 2

    Telford SR III, Spielman A, 1989. Enzootic transmission of the agent of Lyme disease in rabbits. Am J Trop Med Hyg 41 :482–490.

  • 3

    Adler G, Wilson M, 1987. Demography of a habitat generalist, the white-footed mouse, in a heterogeneous environment. Ecology 68 :1785–1796.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 4

    Dumler JS, Barbet AF, Bekker CP, Dasch GA, Palmer GH, Ray SC, Rikihisa Y, Rurangirwa FR, 2001. Reorganization of genera in the families Rickettsiaceae and Anaplasmataceae in the order Rickettsiales: unification of some species of Ehrlichia with Anaplasma, Cowdria with Ehrlichia and Ehrlichia with Neorickettsia, descriptions of six new species combinations and designation of Ehrlichia equi and ‘HGE agent’ as subjective synonyms of Ehrlichia phagocytophila. Int J Syst Evol Microbiol 51 :2145–2165.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 5

    Telford SR III, Dawson JE, Katavolos P, Warner CK, Kolbert CP, Persing DH, 1996. Perpetuation of the agent of human granulocytic ehrlichiosis in a deer tick-rodent cycle. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 93 :6209–6214.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 6

    Alberdi MP, Walker AR, Urquhart KA, 2000. Field evidence that roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) are a natural host for Ehrlichia phagocytophila. Epidemiol Infect 124 :315–323.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 7

    Belongia EA, Reed KD, Mitchell PD, Kolbert CP, Persing DH, Gill JS, Kazmierczak JJ, 1997. Prevalence of granulocytic Ehrlichia infection among white-tailed deer in Wisconsin. J Clin Microbiol 35 :1465–1468.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 8

    Ogden NH, Bown K, Horrocks BK, Woldehiwet Z, Bennett M, 1998. Granulocytic Ehrlichia infection in ixodid ticks and mammals in woodlands and uplands of the U.K. Med Vet Entomol 12 :423–429.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 9

    Woldehiwet Z, 1983. Tick-borne fever: a review. Vet Res Commun 6 :163–175.

  • 10

    Levin ML, Fish D, 2000. Immunity reduces reservoir host competence of Peromyscus leucopus for Ehrlichia phagocytophila. Infect Immun 68 :1514–1518.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 11

    Dumler JS, Dotevall L, Gustafson R, Granstrom M, 1997. A population-based seroepidemiologic study of human granulocytic ehrlichiosis and Lyme borreliosis on the west coast of Sweden. J Infect Dis 175 :720–722.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 12

    Lotric-Furlan S, Petrovec M, Avsic-Zupanc T, Nicholson WL, Sumner JW, Childs JE, Strle F, 2001. Prospective assessment of the etiology of acute febrile illnes after tick bite in Slovenia. Clin Infect Dis 44 :503–510.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 13

    Fang QQ, Mixson TR, Hughes M, Dunham B, Sapp J, 2002. Prevalence of the agent of human granulocytic ehrlichiosis in Ixodes scapularis (Acari: Ixodidae) in the coastal southeastern United States. J Med Entomol 39 :251–255.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 14

    Nicholson WL, Castro MB, Kramer VL, Sumner JW, Childs JE, 1999. Dusky-footed wood rats (Neotoma fuscipes) as reservoirs of granulocytic ehrlichiae (Rickettsiales: Ehrlichieae) in northern California. J Clin Microbiol 37 :3323–3327.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 15

    Richter PJ Jr, Kimsey RB, Madigan JE, Barlough JE, Dumler JS, Brooks DL, 1996. Ixodes pacificus (Acari: Ixodidae) as a vector of Ehrlichia equi (Rickettsiales: Ehrlichieae). J Med Entomol 33 :1–5.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 16

    Kjemtrup AM, Robinson T, Conrad PA, 2001. Description and epidemiology of Theileria youngi n. sp. from a northern Californian dusky-footed woodrat (Neotoma fuscipes) population. J Parasitol 87 :373–378.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 17

    Fay FH, Chandler EH, 1955. The geographical and ecological distribution of cottontail rabbits in Massachusetts. J Mammal 36 :415–424.

  • 18

    Chen SM, Dumler JS, Bakken JS, Walker DH, 1994. Identification of a granulocytotropic Ehrlichia species as the etiologic agent of human disease. J Clin Microbiol 32 :589–595.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 19

    Nicholson WL, Comer JA, Sumner JW, Gingrich-Baker C, Coughlin RT, Magnarelli LA, Olson JG, Childs JE, 1997. An indirect immunofluorescence assay using a cell culture-derived antigen for detection of antibodies to the agent of human granulocytic ehrlichiosis. J Clin Microbiol 35 :1510–1516.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 20

    Telford SR III, Spielman A, 1993. Reservoir competence of white-footed mice for Babesia microti. J Med Entomol 30 :223–227.

  • 21

    Telford SR III, Spielman A, 1989. Competence of a rabbit-feeding Ixodes (Acari: Ixodidae) as a vector of the Lyme disease spirochete. J Med Entomol 26 :118–121.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 22

    Hodzic E, Fish D, Maretzki CM, De Silva AM, Feng S, Barthold SW, 1998. Acquisition and transmission of the agent of human granulocytic ehrlichiosis by Ixodes scapularis ticks. J Clin Microbiol 36 :3574–3578.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 23

    Macleod J, 1936. Studies in tick-borne fever of sheep: experiments on transmission and distribution of disease. Parasitology 28 :320–329.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 24

    Telford SR III, Mather TN, Moore SI, Wilson ML, Spielman A, 1988. Incompetence of deer as reservoirs of the Lyme disease spirochete. Am J Trop Med Hyg 39 :105–109.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 25

    Donahue JG, Piesman J, Spielman A, 1987. Reservoir competence of white-footed mice for Lyme disease spirochetes. Am J Surg Pathol 11 (Suppl 1):47–60.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 26

    Levine JF, Wilson ML, Spielman A, 1985. Mice as reservoirs of the Lyme disease spirochete. Am J Trop Med Hyg 34 :355–360.

  • 27

    Massung RF, Mauel MJ, Owens JH, Allan N, Courtney JW, Stafford KC 3rd, Mather TN, 2002. Genetic variants of Ehrlichia phagocytophila, Rhode Island and Connecticut. Emerg Infect Dis 8 :467–472.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 28

    Armstrong PM, Brunet LR, Spielman A, Telford SR 3rd, 2001. Risk of Lyme disease: perceptions of residents of a Lone Star tick-infested community. Bull World Health Organ 79 :916–925.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 29

    Battaly G, Fish D, Dowler R, 1987. The seasonal occurrence of Ixodes dammini and Ixodes dentatus (Acari, Ixodidae) on birds in a Lyme-disease endemic area of southeastern New York State. J NY Entomol Soc 95 :461–468.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
 
 
 

 

 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ENZOOTIC TRANSMISSION OF THE AGENT OF HUMAN GRANULOCYTIC EHRLICHIOSIS AMONG COTTONTAIL RABBITS

View More View Less
  • 1 Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts

To determine whether the agent of human granulocytic ehrlichiosis (HGE) (Anaplasma phagocytophilum) may be maintained in a parallel enzootic cycle between cottontail rabbits and their ticks, we sampled these hosts from a zoonotic site during five transmission seasons. Evidence of infection was sought by microscopy and polymerase chain reaction from rabbit blood or splenic tissue, and from ticks collected from rabbits or from vegetation. Approximately 27% of all rabbits sampled contained evidence of active infection, and 66% were seropositive. The vectorial capacity of Ixodes dentatus was demonstrated by xenodiagnosis studies; in addition, 2% of host-seeking nymphs were infected. Haemaphysalis leporispalustris was not a competent vector. Because of their propensity to densely inhabit peridomestic sites, and because I. dentatus may be transported by birds, a parallel cycle of transmission in cottontail rabbits would facilitate introduction and perpetuation of the agent of HGE.

Author Notes

Reprint requests: Sam R. Telford III, Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Biomedical Sciences, Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine, 200 Westboro Road, North Grafton MA 01536, Telephone: 508-887-4236, Fax: 508-839-7911, E-mail: sam.telford@tufts.edu.
Save