Trypanosoma cruzi congenital transmission in wild bats
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Trypanosoma cruzi congenital transmission in wild bats (Molossus molossus), associated with infected Rhodnius prolixus in a natural habitat from a rural locality in western Venezuela, is reported. T. cruzi blood circulating trypomastigotes in a pregnant batwere detected by parasitologicalmethods. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays carried out in samples from the heart and the fetus of the same infected female, revealed the presence of T. cruzi-specific DNA in both of the tissues, demonstrating transmission of the infection from the mother to the offspring. Eighty percent of the captured bats and 100% of the examined fetuses frompregnant specimenswere shownto be infected by T. cruzi, indicating that M. molossus is a very susceptible species for this parasite, and that T. cruzi congenital transmission is a common phenomenon in nature. To our knowledge, this seems to be the first report on congenital T. cruzi transmission in wild bats in Venezuela. The circulation of T. cruzi lineage I in the study areawas demonstrated by typing the isolates from bats and triatomine bugs captured in the same habitat. The potential epidemiological implication of these findings in areas where Chagas disease is endemic is discussed.
|Editor||Acta Tropica 109 (2009)|