Urban leptospirosis in Africa: a cross-sectional survey of Leptospira infection in rodents in the Kibera Urban Settlement, Nairobi, Kenya

Halliday, J.E.B. et al. (2013) Urban leptospirosis in Africa: a cross-sectional survey of Leptospira infection in rodents in the Kibera Urban Settlement, Nairobi, Kenya. American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, 89(6), pp. 1095-1102. (doi:10.4269/ajtmh.13-0415) (PMID:24080637) (PMCID:PMC3854886)

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Abstract

Leptospirosis is a widespread but under-reported cause of morbidity and mortality. Global re-emergence of leptospirosis has been associated with the growth of informal urban settlements in which rodents are thought to be important reservoir hosts. Understanding the multi-host epidemiology of leptospirosis is essential to control and prevent disease. A cross-sectional survey of rodents in the Kibera settlement in Nairobi, Kenya was conducted in September-October 2008 to demonstrate the presence of pathogenic leptospires. A real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction showed that 41 (18.3%) of 224 rodents carried pathogenic leptospires in their kidneys, and sequence data identified Leptospira interrogans and L. kirschneri in this population. Rodents of the genus Mus (37 of 185) were significantly more likely to be positive than those of the genus Rattus (4 of 39; odds ratio = 15.03). Questionnaire data showed frequent contact between humans and rodents in Kibera. This study emphasizes the need to quantify the public health impacts of this neglected disease at this and other urban sites in Africa.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Cleaveland, Professor Sarah and Knobel, Mr Darryn and Halliday, Dr Joanna and Allan, Dr Kathryn
Authors: Halliday, J.E.B., Knobel, D.L., Allan, K.J., Bronsvoort, M., Handel, I., Agwanda, B., Cutler, S.J., Olack, B., Ahmed, A., Hartskeerl, R.A., Kariuki Njenga, M., Cleaveland, S., and Breiman, R.F.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation
Journal Name:American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Publisher:American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
ISSN:0002-9637
ISSN (Online):1476-1645
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2013 The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
First Published:First published in American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene 89(6):1095-1102
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
500531An integrated epidemiological study of zoonotic pathogens in linked human and animal populations in rural KenyaSarah CleavelandWellcome Trust (WELLCOME)081828/B/06/ZRI BIODIVERSITY ANIMAL HEALTH & COMPMED
573981Leptospirosis in Tanzania; a study of the role of rodents in an emerging public health problem.Sarah CleavelandWellcome Trust (WELLCOME)096400/Z/11/ZRI BIODIVERSITY ANIMAL HEALTH & COMPMED
568221Impact, ecology and social determinants of bacterial zoonoses in northern TanzaniaSarah CleavelandBiotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)BB/J010367/1RI BIODIVERSITY ANIMAL HEALTH & COMPMED
538321Rodents and bats as reservoirs of zoonoses: ecological and social determinants of human disease risk in Kenya.Sarah CleavelandMedical Research Council (MRC)G0902417RI BIODIVERSITY ANIMAL HEALTH & COMPMED