Isoenzyme characterization of Leishmania isolates from Lebanon and Syria.

K N KnioBiology Department, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, American University of Beirut, Lebanon.

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E BaydounBiology Department, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, American University of Beirut, Lebanon.

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R TawkBiology Department, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, American University of Beirut, Lebanon.

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N Nuwayri-SaltiBiology Department, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, American University of Beirut, Lebanon.

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Leishmania parasites were isolated from 22 Lebanese and 5 Syrian patients with active skin lesions for whom the diagnosis was confirmed by histopathological examination. The isolates were characterized by starch gel electrophoresis and analysis of 13 enzyme systems. Eight Old-World reference strains were used for comparison. One Syrian isolate belonged to Leishmania major, and four Syrian and two Lebanese to Leishmania tropica. Contrary to expectations, the majority of Lebanese isolates were related to the Leishmania donovani complex, and more particularly Leishmania infantum.

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