Author(s): Balcells ME, Rabagliati R, Garca P, Poggi H, Odd D,
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Abstract We report a case of scrub typhus in a 54-year-old man who was bitten by several terrestrial leeches during a trip to Chiloé Island in southern Chile in 2006. A molecular sample, identified as related to Orientia tsutsugamushi based on the sequence of the16S rRNA gene, was obtained from a biopsy specimen of the eschar on the patient's leg. Serologic analysis showed immunoglobulin G conversion against O. tsutsugamushi whole cell antigen. This case and its associated molecular analyses suggest that an Orientia-like agent is present in the Western Hemisphere that can produce scrub typhus-like illness. The molecular analysis suggests that the infectious agent is closely related, although not identical, to members of the Orientia sp. from Asia.
This article was published in Emerg Infect Dis
and referenced in Journal of Vaccines & Vaccination