Baldelli R., S. Piva, D. Salvatore, M. Parigi, O. Melloni, M. Tamba, R. Bellini, G. Poglayen
Vet. Parasitol. 179: 57–61; DOI:10.1016/J.VETPAR.2011.01.052
An epidemiological survey on canine leishmaniasis (CanL) was performed during a 3-year period (2007–2009) in a public kennel of the Bologna province. The presence of the disease was shown in the canine population for the first time in 2007 by indirect fluorescent antibody test (IFAT). The parasite circulation was confirmed also by direct diagnostic tools, as PCR, cytology and cultural method, performed on different bioptic materials. The parasite was isolated and identified as Leishmania infantum zymodeme MON 1. The serological monitoring was performed also in 2008 and 2009 on animals that previously showed negative or uncertain results. The incidence values calculated by significant seroconversions in IFAT titre ≥1/160, ranged between 4.9% and 6.6%, indicating a stable focus of leishmaniasis. The entomological survey, performed by sticky and CO2-baited traps in 2008, showed the presence of the vector Phlebotomus perfiliewi. This study allowed us to identify a stable focus of CanL in an area that was not considered eco-compatible with the presence of the vector and infection. Our results confirm the northward spread of CanL towards areas not previously affected by autochthonous foci.