Imprimir Republish


Leishmaniasis in our cities

Dogs in Sao Paulo: also infected

Miguel BoyayanDogs in Sao Paulo: also infectedMiguel Boyayan

Of the 427 dogs treated over the last 10 years, in 117 of them the Dermatology Service at the Veterinary Hospital (Hovet) of the University of São Paulo, detected anti-bodies against the protozoan that causes visceral leishmaniasis. In addition to causing skin lesions, the disease affects the liver, spleen and bone marrow – and it can kill. Leishmaniasis was once considered a rural infirmity, transmitted by insects of the Lutzomyia species, like the moth flies that live in forests. But over the last few decades it has been getting closer to large cities (see Pesquisa FAPESP nº 151). According to Carlos Larsson, head of the Dermatology Service of Hovet, it is highly unlikely that the dogs contracted the disease in Sao Paulo. Some however seem to have been infected in municipalities in the Greater Metropolitan Region of São Paulo, such as Cotia and Embu (USP News Agency). The presence of sick animals in our cities raises the risk of transmission to people.