Ticks and mosquitoes as vectors of Borrelia burgdorferi s. l. in the forested areas of Szczecin
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The aim of the study was to determine the infection level of adult forms and larvae of ticks and mosquitoes with Borrelia burgdorferi in the forested areas of Szczecin. A total of 1699 ticks Ixodes ricinus, including 1422 nymphs, 277 adult forms and 2862 mosquito females representing the genera Aedes (89.6%) and Culex (10.4%) were collected between the years 2004 and 2005. A further 3746 larvae and 1596 pupae of Culex pipiens pipiens were colleted from water bodies. Borrelia burgdorferi s. l. was detected in the arthropods by the method of indirect immunofluorescence assay (IFA). A positive immunological reaction was detected in 16.6% of the adult forms and in 16.5% of the nymphs of Ixodes ricinus. Spirochetes were also detected in 1.7% of mosquito females, 3.2% of larvae and in 1.6% of pupae of Culex pipiens pipiens. The results of the present study confirm that contact with ticks constitutes the main risk of contracting Lyme disease, although mosquitoes play a role as vectors as well.
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Danuta I. Kosik-Bogacka, Department of Biology and Medical Parasitology, Pomeranian Medical University, Powstancow Wielkopolskich Av. 72, 70-111 Szczecin, Poland