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Journal of Tropical Medicine
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 959101, 10 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/959101
Research Article

Species Distribution Models and Ecological Suitability Analysis for Potential Tick Vectors of Lyme Disease in Mexico

1Section of Integrative Biology, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78712, USA
2Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California Davis, Davis, CA 95616, USA
3Centro Médico Nacional SXXI, Unidad de Investigación Médica de Enfermedades Infecciosas y Parasitarias, IMSS, Avenida Cuauhtémoc 330, Colonia Doctores 06725 México, DF, Mexico
4Laboratorio de Sistemas de Información Geográfica, Departamento de Zoología, Instituto de Biología, UNAM, Circuito Exterior, Apartado Postal 70-153, Coyoacán, 04510 México, DF, Mexico
5Department of Forensic and Investigative Genetics, University of North Texas Health Science Center, 3500 Camp Bowie Boulevard, Fort Worth, TX 76107, USA
6Colección Nacional de µcaros, Departamento de Zoología, Instituto de Biología, UNAM, Circuito Exterior, Apartado Postal 70-153, Coyoacán, 04510 México, DF, Mexico

Received 15 July 2011; Accepted 23 October 2011

Academic Editor: Nildimar Honório

Copyright © 2012 Patricia Illoldi-Rangel 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.

Abstract

Species distribution models were constructed for ten Ixodes species and Amblyomma cajennense for a region including Mexico and Texas. The model was based on a maximum entropy algorithm that used environmental layers to predict the relative probability of presence for each taxon. For Mexico, species geographic ranges were predicted by restricting the models to cells which have a higher probability than the lowest probability of the cells in which a presence record was located. There was spatial nonconcordance between the distributions of Amblyomma cajennense and the Ixodes group with the former restricted to lowlands and mainly the eastern coast of Mexico and the latter to montane regions with lower temperature. The risk of Lyme disease is, therefore, mainly present in the highlands where some Ixodes species are known vectors; if Amblyomma cajennense turns out to be a competent vector, the area of risk also extends to the lowlands and the east coast.