Short report: isolation and identification of two spotted fever group rickettsial strains from patients in Catalonia, Spain.

N CardeñosaPrograma Asistencial de Malalties Infeccioses i Secció de Microbiologia, Corporació Sanitària Parc Tauli, Sabadell, Barcelona, Spain.

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V RouxPrograma Asistencial de Malalties Infeccioses i Secció de Microbiologia, Corporació Sanitària Parc Tauli, Sabadell, Barcelona, Spain.

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B FontPrograma Asistencial de Malalties Infeccioses i Secció de Microbiologia, Corporació Sanitària Parc Tauli, Sabadell, Barcelona, Spain.

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I SanfeliuPrograma Asistencial de Malalties Infeccioses i Secció de Microbiologia, Corporació Sanitària Parc Tauli, Sabadell, Barcelona, Spain.

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D RaoultPrograma Asistencial de Malalties Infeccioses i Secció de Microbiologia, Corporació Sanitària Parc Tauli, Sabadell, Barcelona, Spain.

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F SeguraPrograma Asistencial de Malalties Infeccioses i Secció de Microbiologia, Corporació Sanitària Parc Tauli, Sabadell, Barcelona, Spain.

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Two rickettsial strains, 16B (previously isolated) and FB1, were isolated from blood from patients with Mediterranean spotted fever in Catalonia, Spain. These are the only 2 human rickettsial isolates of the spotted fever group obtained so far in Spain. These strains were identified by the polymerase chain reaction and sequence analysis of a fragment of the outer membrane protein A (ompA) gene. The partial ompA sequence was found to be 100% identical with that of Rickettsia conorii (Malish 7 strain) for both strains. These results confirm the presence of R. conorii in Catalonia, despite the fact that in a previous study, no R. conorii were isolated, but a new rickettsial strain of the spotted fever group (Bar29) was isolated from dog ticks (Rhipicephalus sanguineus) in Catalonia. Further studies are necessary to get a better knowledge of the epidemiology of rickettsiae in Catalonia.

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