Serologic evidence of infection with ehrlichiae and spotted fever group rickettsiae among residents of Gag Island, Indonesia.
The causative agents of scrub and murine typhus are considered endemic to Indonesia. However, the presence of spotted fever group rickettsiae and ehrlichiae have not been previously described in this country. During an investigation of arthropod-borne diseases on Gag Island, located northwest of the island of New Guinea in eastern Indonesia, the prevalence of antibody to the etiologic agents of monocytic ehrlichiosis, spotted fever rickettsiosis, and scrub and murine typhus were determined. Analysis of 55 blood samples from residents of Gag Island showed seroreactivity to antigen preparations of Ehrlichia chaffeensis (7 of 48, 14.6%), two spotted fever group rickettsiae: Rickettsia rickettsii (5 of 48, 10.4%) and R. conorii (10 of 49, 20.4%), Orientia tsutsugamushi (5 of 53, 9.4%), and R. typhi (1 of 48, 2.1% [by an indirect immunofluorescence assay] and 1 of 50, 2.0% [by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay]). These results show serologic evidence of infection with ehrlichiae and spotted fever group rickettsiae for the first time in Indonesia in a location where the prevalence of antibody to O. tsutsugamushi and R. typhi was lower. (+info)
Extremely acidophilic protists from acid mine drainage host Rickettsiales-lineage endosymbionts that have intervening sequences in their 16S rRNA genes.
During a molecular phylogenetic survey of extremely acidic (pH < 1), metal-rich acid mine drainage habitats in the Richmond Mine at Iron Mountain, Calif., we detected 16S rRNA gene sequences of a novel bacterial group belonging to the order Rickettsiales in the Alphaproteobacteria. The closest known relatives of this group (92% 16S rRNA gene sequence identity) are endosymbionts of the protist Acanthamoeba. Oligonucleotide 16S rRNA probes were designed and used to observe members of this group within acidophilic protists. To improve visualization of eukaryotic populations in the acid mine drainage samples, broad-specificity probes for eukaryotes were redesigned and combined to highlight this component of the acid mine drainage community. Approximately 4% of protists in the acid mine drainage samples contained endosymbionts. Measurements of internal pH of the protists showed that their cytosol is close to neutral, indicating that the endosymbionts may be neutrophilic. The endosymbionts had a conserved 273-nucleotide intervening sequence (IVS) in variable region V1 of their 16S rRNA genes. The IVS does not match any sequence in current databases, but the predicted secondary structure forms well-defined stem loops. IVSs are uncommon in rRNA genes and appear to be confined to bacteria living in close association with eukaryotes. Based on the phylogenetic novelty of the endosymbiont sequences and initial culture-independent characterization, we propose the name "Candidatus Captivus acidiprotistae." To our knowledge, this is the first report of an endosymbiotic relationship in an extremely acidic habitat. (+info)
Rickettsial infections and their clinical presentations in the Western Province of Sri Lanka: a hospital-based study.
BACKGROUND: Rickettsial infections are re-emerging. A study of the geographical distribution of rickettsial infections, their clinical manifestations, and their complications would facilitate early diagnosis. METHODS: Thirty-one selected patients from the Western Province of Sri Lanka were studied for rickettsial species, clinical manifestations, and complications. RESULTS: Of 31 patients with possible rickettsioses, 29 (94%) fell into the categories of confirmed, presumptive, or exposed cases of acute rickettsial infections (scrub typhus was diagnosed in 19 (66%), spotted fever group in eight (28%)). Early acute infection or past exposure was suggested in two (7%) cases; cross-reactivity of antigens or past exposure to one or more species was suggested in nine (31%). Seventeen out of 19 (89%) patients with scrub typhus had eschars. Nine out of 29 (32%) patients had a discrete erythematous papular rash: seven caused by spotted fever group, two by scrub typhus. Severe complications were pneumonitis in eight (28%), myocarditis in five (17%), deafness in four (14%), and tinnitus in two (7%). The mean duration of illness before onset of complications was 12.0 (SD 1.4) days. All patients except one made a good clinical recovery with doxycycline or a combination of doxycycline and chloramphenicol. CONCLUSIONS: In a region representing the low country wet zone of Sri Lanka, the main rickettsial agent seems to be Orientia tsutsugamushi. Delay in diagnosis may result in complications. All species responded well to current treatment. (+info)
The relationship between spotted fever group Rickettsiae and ixodid ticks.