Volume 101, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



Buruli ulcer is an infectious disease provoking chronic, disabling skin ulcers in mammals and humans. Buruli ulcer is caused by , an environmental mycobacterium synthesizing a toxin called mycolactone responsible for the pathogenicity. The reservoirs and the modes of transmission of remain elusive, limiting the prophylaxis capabilities in rural areas in endemic countries. In Australia, several studies have demonstrated the probable role of possums as reservoirs. In Côte d’Ivoire, some studies have speculated on the potential role of grasscutters in the transmission cycle of . In this study, we detected –specific sequences in rectal contents and spleens collected in wild grasscutters hunted in Buruli ulcer–endemic area in Côte d’Ivoire, but not in farmed negative control animals and in domesticated animals, namely, pigs, goats, cattle, and dogs, living in close contact with the local population. Some grasscutters exhibited the same sequence pattern in the feces and spleen. These observations confirm the asymptomatic gut carriage of in this mammal species. Moreover, these observations suggest the dissemination of from the gut to the spleen in grasscutters. These observations suggest that, in some mammals, is not only an inoculated pathogen but also a translocating invasive pathogen.


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  • Received : 13 Feb 2019
  • Accepted : 26 May 2019
  • Published online : 22 Jul 2019
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