Revista argentina de microbiología
versión On-line ISSN 1851-7617
CANTEROS, C.E. et al. First isolation of Histoplasma capsulatum from the urban bat Eumops bonariensis. Rev. argent. microbiol. [online]. 2005, vol.37, n.1, pp. 46-56. ISSN 1851-7617.
We report the first isolation of Histoplasma capsulatum var. capsulatum from a male bat Eumops bonariensis captured in Buenos Aires city in 2003. The pathogen was recovered from spleen and liver specimens, and was identified by its phenotypic characteristics. PCR with primers 1283, (GTG)5, (GACA)4 and M13 was used to compare both bat isolates with 17 human isolates, 12 from patients residing in Buenos Aires city, and 5 from other countries of the Americas. The profiles obtained with the four primers showed that both bat isolates were identical to each other and closer to Buenos Aires patients than to the other isolates (similarity percentage: 91-100% and 55-97%, respectively). The high genetic relationship between bat isolates and those from patients living in Buenos Aires suggests a common source of infection. This is the first record of E. bonariensis infected with H. capsulatum in the world, and the first isolation of the fungus in the Argentinean Chiroptera population. In the same way as these wild mammals act as reservoir and spread the fungus in the natural environment, infection in urban bats could well be associated with the increase in histoplasmosis clinical cases among immunosuppressed hosts in Buenos Aires city.
Palabras clave : Histoplasma capsulatum; Epidemiology; Bats; Reservoir; Argentina.