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Molecular Characterization and Genetic Diversity of Haplogroup E Human Lice in Guinea, West Africa

Abstract : Pediculus humanus capitis, the head louse, is an obligate blood-sucking ectoparasite that occurs in six divergent mitochondrial clades (A, D, B, F, C and E). Several studies reported the presence of different pathogenic agents in head lice specimens collected worldwide. These findings suggest that head louse could be a dangerous vector and a serious public health problem. Herein, we aimed to study the mitochondrial genetic diversity, the PHUM540560 gene polymorphisms profile of head lice collected in Guinea, as well as to screen for their associated pathogens. In 2018, a total of 155 head lice were collected from 49 individuals at the Medicals Centers of rural (Maférinyah village) and urban (Kindia city) areas, in Guinea. Specimens were subjected to a genetic analysis and pathogens screening using molecular tools. Results showed that all head lice belonged to eight haplotypes in the E haplogroup, with six newly identified for the first time. The study of the PHUM540560 gene polymorphisms of our clade E-head lice revealed that 82.5% exhibited the same polymorphism profile as the previously reported clade A-body lice. Screening for targeted pathogens revealed the presence of Acinetobacter spp., while sequencing highlighted the presence of several species, including Acinetobacter baumannii, Acinetobacter nosocomialis, Acinetobacter variabilis, Acinetobacter towneri and for the first time Acinetobacter haemolyticus. Our study is the first to report the existence of the Guinean haplogroup E, the PHUM540560 gene polymorphism profile as well as the presence of Acinetobacter species in head lice collected from Guinea.
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Submitted on : Thursday, May 27, 2021 - 1:10:01 PM
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Alissa Hammoud, Meriem Louni, Mamadou Cellou Baldé, Abdoul Habib Beavogui, Philippe Gautret, et al.. Molecular Characterization and Genetic Diversity of Haplogroup E Human Lice in Guinea, West Africa. Microorganisms, MDPI, 2021, 9 (2), pp.257. ⟨10.3390/microorganisms9020257⟩. ⟨hal-03215453⟩

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