Three common European 'anthrophilic' ticks, Ixodes ricinus, Haemaphysalis concinna and Dermacentor reticulatus, were collected in Hungary and tested, in assays based on nested PCR, for rickettsiae of the spotted-fever group. Low percentages of I. ricinus (2.7%) and H. concinna (1.0%) and a high percentage of D. reticulatus (26.8%) were found to be infected. The rickettsiae in the ticks were then identified, by sequencing of the genes coding for 16S ribosomal RNA (16S rDNA), citrate synthase (gltA) and the rOmpA outer-membrane protein (ompA), as Rickettsia helvetica, Rickettsia monacensis, Rickettsia sp. RpA4, or what is probably a newly recognized Rickettsia species ('Candidatus Rickettsia kotlanii'). These results raise the possibility that rickettsiae other than Rickettsia slovaca are involved in human disease in Hungary. Current knowledge on the distributions of the rickettsiae of the spotted-fever group that are emerging in Europe is also summarized.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases