Serological evidence of Leptospira spp circulation in naturallyexposed rats (Rattusnorvegicus) in a Colombian urban area

Piedad Agudelo-Flórez, Juan C. Arango, Elisa Merizalde, Andrés F. Londoño, Víctor H. Quiroz, Juan D. Rodas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Objective Assessing the frequency of antibodies directed against pathogenic Leptospira species found in natural reservoirs for establishing evidence of their potential role in the environmental dispersion of Leptospira and consequent dissemination of the infection to humans as well as to other susceptible species. Material and methods A survey was carried out in the Plaza Minorista from August 2006 to April 2007 in which 254 rats (Rattusnorvegicus) were captured. Blood was obtained from these rodents by cardiac puncture and the resulting serum was used for microagglutination tests. Results Serological analysis for verifying Leptospira spp circulating serovars resulted in 64 rodents (25.2 %;19.5-30.1 95 %CI) having positive antibody titres for at least 11 of the serovars tested. Conclusions Frequency data regarding the antibodies so detected showed that the Icterohaemorrhagiae serovar was not the only one possibly associated with this reservoir species, but also with others such as the Grippothyphosa and Canícolaserovars. The study determined the frequency of antibodies against pathogenic Leptospira species for reservoirs from an urban area in Colombia. This data is relevant for public health authorities and might constitute the basis for implementing appropriate control campaigns for this area of the country and, likewise, this work could serve as a model for similar studies in other Colombian cities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)990-999
Number of pages10
JournalRevista de Salud Publica
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Agglutination test
  • Antibodies
  • Epidemiology
  • Leptospira
  • Serovar

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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