Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa

The role of birds in dissemination of Francisella tularensis: first direct molecular evidence for bird-to-human transmission

  • P. I. PADESHKI (a1), I. N. IVANOV (a1), B. POPOV and T. V. KANTARDJIEV (a1)

During a recent large tularemia outbreak in Bulgaria we found several cases that were remote from the main focus. One case had an unusual mode of transmission. A hunter acquired tularemia through a nail scratch from a buzzard (Buteo buteo) and consequently developed a typical ulceroglandular form of the disease. The diagnosis was confirmed by serological methods and successful cultivation. Comparative strain typing was performed by high-resolution multi-locus variable-number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA). The isolated strain was identical to one of the outbreak genotypes. We consider that this case represents a bird-to-human transmission of F. tularensis.

Corresponding author
*Author for correspondence: Dr P. I. Padeshki, National Centre of Infectious and Parasitic Diseases, Microbiology Department, 26 Yanko Sakazov, 1504Sofia, Bulgaria. (Email:
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

1. D Dennis , Tularemia as a biological weapon: medical and public health management. Journal of the American Medical Association 2001; 285: 27632773.

3. RG Green , EM Wade . Experimental tularemia in birds. Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine 1928; 25: 637.

5. T Morner , R Mattsson . Experimental infection of five species of raptors and of hooded crows with Francisella tularensis biovar palaearctica. Journal of Wildlife Diseases 1988; 24: 1521.

6. NJ Kursban , L Foshay . Tularemia acquired from a pheasant. Journal of the American Medical Association 1946; 131: 14931494.

7. RG Green , EM Wade . A natural infection quail by Bacillus tularensis. Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine 1929; 26: 626627.

11. A Johansson , M Forsman , A Sjostedt . The development of tools for diagnosis of tularemia and typing of Francisella tularensis. APMIS 2004; 112: 898907.

15. T Mörner . Tularemia. In: NJ Thomas , DB Hunter , CT Atkinson , eds. Infectious Diseases of Wild Birds. Ames, Iowa: Blackwell Publishing, 2007, pp. 352359.

16. PTJ Johnson , Dining on disease: how interactions between infection and environment affect predation risk. Ecology 2006; 87: 19731980.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Epidemiology & Infection
  • ISSN: 0950-2688
  • EISSN: 1469-4409
  • URL: /core/journals/epidemiology-and-infection
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *



Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 4
Total number of PDF views: 11 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 74 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 26th June 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.