Flying squirrel typhus

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Flying squirrel typhus is a condition characterized by a rash of early macules, and, later, maculopapules. [1]

Rash

A rash is a change of the human skin which affects its color, appearance, or texture.

The flying squirrel Glaucomys volans can transmit epidemic typhus. [2]

Epidemic typhus Human disease

Epidemic typhus is a form of typhus so named because the disease often causes epidemics following wars and natural disasters. The causative organism is Rickettsia prowazekii, transmitted by the human body louse.

Apart from humans, flying squirrels are the only currently known reservoir for Rickettsia prowazekii . [3]

Rickettsia prowazekii is a species of gram-negative, alphaproteobacteria, obligate intracellular parasitic, aerobic Bacillus bacteria that is the etiologic agent of epidemic typhus, transmitted in the feces of lice. In North America, the main reservoir for R. prowazekii is the flying squirrel. R. prowazekii is often surrounded by a protein microcapsular layer and slime layer; the natural life cycle of the bacterium generally involves a vertebrate and an invertebrate host, usually an arthropod, typically the human body louse. A form of R. prowazekii that exists in the feces of arthropods remains stably infective for months. R. prowazekii also appears to be the closest free-living relative of mitochondria, based on genome sequencing.

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References

  1. Rapini, Ronald P.; Bolognia, Jean L.; Jorizzo, Joseph L. (2007). Dermatology: 2-Volume Set. St. Louis: Mosby. p. 1130. ISBN   1-4160-2999-0.
  2. Bechah Y, Capo C, Mege JL, Raoult D (July 2008). "Epidemic typhus". Lancet Infect Dis. 8 (7): 417–26. doi:10.1016/S1473-3099(08)70150-6. PMID   18582834.
  3. Reynolds MG, Krebs JS, Comer JA, et al. (October 2003). "Flying squirrel-associated typhus, United States". Emerging Infect. Dis. 9 (10): 1341–3. doi:10.3201/eid0910.030278. PMC   3033063 Lock-green.svg. PMID   14609478.