Leishmaniasis in Portugal: enzyme polymorphism of Leishmania infantum based on the identification of 213 strains

L Campino, Francine Pratlong, P Abranches, J-A Rioux, G Santos-Gomes, C. Alves-Pires, S Cortes, J Ramada, J M Cristovão, M O Afonso, Jean-Pierre Dedet

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55 Citations (Scopus)


This study reports isoenzyme polymorphism of Leishmania strains isolated in different regions of Portugal between 1982 and 2005. A total of 213 strains were obtained from cases of visceral and cutaneous leishmaniasis isolated from immunocompetent patients (adults and children) and immunocompromised adults, as well as from dogs and sandflies. Four zymodemes were identified: MON-1, MON-24, MON-29 and MON-80. Zymodeme MON-1 was identified in 96.7% of the strains, predominating in both immunocompetent and immunocompromised human patients, and it was the only zymodeme isolated from dogs. Isoenzyme diversity in HIV-infected patients was higher than in the immunocompetent group, in which all the strains from visceral leishmaniasis were MON-1. The domestic dog was confirmed as the reservoir host of zoonotic leishmaniasis in Portugal and Phlebotomus perniciosus and Phlebotomus ariasi as vectors. The overall low enzyme polymorphism observed in the Portuguese foci contrasts with the neighbouring foci in Spain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1708-1714
Number of pages7
JournalTropical Medicine & International Health
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2006


  • Adult
  • Animals
  • Child
  • Dog Diseases
  • Dogs
  • HIV Infections
  • Humans
  • Insect Vectors
  • Isoenzymes
  • Leishmania infantum
  • Leishmaniasis
  • Leishmaniasis, Cutaneous
  • Leishmaniasis, Visceral
  • Phlebotomus
  • Polymorphism, Genetic
  • Portugal
  • Zoonoses
  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't


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