Epidemiology of Cutaneous Leishmaniasis at a Focus Monitored by the Multinational Force and Observers in the Northeastern Sinai Desert of Egypt
NAVAL MEDICAL RESEARCH UNIT NO 3 CAIRO (EGYPT) DEPT OF MEDICAL ZOOLOGY
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A longitudinal epidemiologic study of cutaneous leishmaniasis CL transmission was conducted between July 1989 and June 1991 in a 1,200-sq km sector of the northeastern Sinai Desert monitored by the Multinational Force and Observers MFO, an international peace keeping mission between Egypt and Israel. The occurrence of human cases, sand fly density, rodent collection, and isolations of Leishmania confirmed only one of four surveyed location as a significant focus of CL transmission. Phlebotomus papatasi, the only anthropophilic sand fly species encountered at this focus, comprised more than 96 of the sand fly population and attained human landing densities exceeding 100 sand fliespersonhr during 1990. Seasonal activity of this species ranged from April to November, with highest densities occurring during the period May- September. A peak promastigote infection rate of 2.4 13 of 534 was observed in P papatasi during July 1990. Twelve of the 60 20 persons at risk during the six months of intense sand fly activity at this site developed lesions consistent with CL L. major was isolated from nine 75 of these cases. Leishmania major infection was acquired by two of 22 9 sentinel hamsters used during the same period. More than 97 of the 897 wild rodents trapped at this site were desert gerbil species. Leishmania major was the only Leishmania isolated from human, sand fly, wild rodent Gerbillus pyramidum, and sentinel hamster infections that originated at site Check point 1-Delta, the focus of CL transmission within jurisdiction of the MFO.
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