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Sergentomyia (Neophlebotomus) gemmea, a potential vector of Leishmania siamensis in southern Thailand

Kobkan Kanjanopas1, Suradej Siripattanapipong2, Ubolrat Ninsaeng3, Atitaya Hitakarun4, Somnat Jitkaew5, Preecha Kaewtaphaya6, Peerapan Tan-ariya4, Mathirut Mungthin2, Chetsuda Charoenwong4 and Saovanee Leelayoova2*

Author Affiliations

1 Ministry of Public Health, Nonthaburi Province 11000, Thailand

2 Department of Parasitology, Phramongkutklao College of Medicine, 315 Ratchawithi Road, Ratchathewi, Bangkok 10400, Thailand

3 The Vector-borne Disease Control Center 11.3, Ministry of Public Health, Suratthani Province, Thailand

4 Faculty of Science, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand

5 The Vector-borne Disease Control Center 12.3, Ministry of Public Health, Trang Province, Thailand

6 Yantakao Hospital, Trang Province, Thailand

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BMC Infectious Diseases 2013, 13:333  doi:10.1186/1471-2334-13-333

Published: 19 July 2013



Leishmaniasis, caused by Leishmania siamensis, is an emerging disease in Thailand. Although reported cases have been increasing, epidemiological information of the disease including host and vector aspects is not clearly known. This study was a preliminary survey of the potential vector of L. siamensis in an affected area of leishmaniasis, Trang Province, southern Thailand.


The collection of sandflies was performed around the area where a case of leishmaniasis was reported using CDC light traps. Species of sandfly were identified based on morphological characteristics according to Lewis’s key. PCR amplification and sequencing of the heat shock protein 70 gene (hsp70) was used to identify L. siamensis DNA in sandflies.


A total of 146 male and female sandflies were collected in the affected areas. Of 71 female sandflies, four species were identified, i.e., Sergentomyia (Neophlebotomus) gemmea, S. (Neophlebotomus) iyengari, S. (Parrotomyia) barraudi and Phlebotomus (Anaphlebotomus) stantoni. Among these species, S. (Neophlebotomus) gemmea was the most predominant species in all areas. DNA of L. siamensis was identified in S. (Neophlebotomus) gemmea. Nucleotide sequences of PCR products using DNA extracted from S. (Neophlebotomus) gemmea showed 99.8% identity to L. siamensis.


S. (Neophlebotomus) gemmea might be a potential vector of L. siamensis in an affected area, Trang Province, southern Thailand. However further studies are needed to prove whether these sandflies can be natural vectors of leishmaniasis.

Leishmaniasis; Leishmania siamensis; Sergentomyia (Neophlebotomus) gemmea; Vector; Thailand