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Journal of Tropical Medicine
Volume 2012, Article ID 429586, 8 pages
Research Article

Public Knowledge about and Detection of Canine Visceral Leishmaniasis in Urban Divinópolis, Brazil

1Centro de Pesquisas René Rachou, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz/FIOCRUZ, Avenida Augusto de Lima 1715, 30190-002 Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil
2Fundação Educacional de Divinópolis, Universidade Estadual de Minas Gerais (FUNEDI/UEMG), Avenida Paraná 3001, 35501-170 Divinópolis, MG, Brazil
3Departamento de Ciências Médicas, Escola de Farmácia, Universidade Federal de Ouro Preto, Rua Diogo de Vasconcelos 122, 35400-000 Ouro Preto, MG, Brazil
4Departamento de Engenharia de Biossistemas, Universidade Federal de São João del-Rei, Praça Frei Orlando, 170 Centro, 36307-352 São João del-Rei, MG, Brazil
5Departamento de Parasitologia, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Avenida Antônio Carlos 6627, 31270-901 Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil

Received 29 May 2012; Revised 11 July 2012; Accepted 27 July 2012

Academic Editor: Maria Aparecida Shikanai Yasuda

Copyright © 2012 Carina Margonari et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Leishmaniases are diseases with a wide spectrum of clinical manifestations including cutaneous (CL) and visceral (VL) forms. Many factors may affect their occurrence and expansion including environmental, geographic, and social conditions. In the past two decades, Divinópolis, Minas Gerais State, Brazil, has exhibited the potential for a disease outbreak, with the appearance of CL, and VL cases (human and canine). Hence, this study was initiated to monitor public knowledge of the disease. Questionnaires were administered in four neighborhoods (Jardim Belvedere, Esplanada, Danilo Passos I and II) where most of the human and canine cases have been reported. The analyses demonstrated that public knowledge of the disease is sparse and fragmented. A strong perception of the dog as the main reservoir was observed. Five veterinary clinics were evaluated for the presence of canine VL using serological (RIFI and ELISA) and molecular (PCR-RFLP) techniques. This is the first study demonstrating the occurrence of Leishmania infantum in Divinópolis, suggesting a possible urbanization of VL.