Plague (Yersinia pestis infection) is a highly virulent rodent disease that persists in many natural ecosystems. The black rat (Rattus rattus) is the main host involved in the plague focus of the central highlands of Madagascar. Black rat populations from this area are highly resistant to plague, whereas those from areas in which the disease is absent (low… (More)
Orientia bacterium is the agent of the scrub typhus, a seriously neglected life-threatening disease in Asia. Here, we report the detection of DNA of Orientia in rodents from Europe and Africa. These findings have important implications for public health. Surveillance outside Asia, where the disease is not expected by sanitary services, needs to be improved.
Immunity is at the core of major theories related to invasion biology. Among them, the evolution of increased competitive ability (EICA) and EICA-refined hypotheses have been used as a reference work. They postulate that the release from pathogens often experienced during invasion should favour a reallocation of resources from (costly) immune defences to… (More)
Although bubonic plague is an endemic zoonosis in many countries around the world, the factors responsible for the persistence of this highly virulent disease remain poorly known. Classically, the endemic persistence of plague is suspected to be due to the coexistence of plague resistant and plague susceptible rodents in natural foci, and/or to a… (More)
BACKGROUND Landscape may affect the distribution of infectious diseases by influencing the population density and dispersal of hosts and vectors. Plague (Yersinia pestis infection) is a highly virulent, re-emerging disease, the ecology of which has been scarcely studied in Africa. Human seroprevalence data for the major plague focus of Madagascar suggest… (More)