Skip to main content

Trypanosoma sp. diversity in Amazonian bats (Chiroptera; Mammalia) from Acre State, Brazil

  • Francisco C.B. dos Santos (a1) (a2), Cristiane V. Lisboa (a1), Samanta C.C. Xavier (a1), Maria A. Dario (a1), Rair de S. Verde (a3), Armando M. Calouro (a3), André Luiz R. Roque (a1) and Ana M. Jansen (a1)...

Bats are ancient hosts of Trypanosoma species and their flying ability, longevity and adaptability to distinct environments indicate that they are efficient dispersers of parasites. Bats from Acre state (Amazon Biome) were collected in four expeditions conducted in an urban forest (Parque Zoobotânico) and one relatively more preserved area (Seringal Cahoeira) in Rio Branco and Xapuri municipalities. Trypanosoma sp. infection was detected by hemoculture and fresh blood examination. Isolated parasite species were identified by the similarity of the obtained DNA sequence from 18S rDNA polymerase chain reaction and reference strains. Overall, 367 bats from 23 genera and 32 species were examined. Chiropterofauna composition was specific to each municipality, although Artibeus sp. and Carollia sp. prevailed throughout. Trypanosoma sp. infection was detected in 85 bats (23·2%). The most widely distributed and prevalent genotypes were (in order) Trypanosoma cruzi TcI, T. cruzi marinkellei, Trypanosoma dionisii, T. cruzi TcIV and Trypanosoma rangeli. At least one still-undescribed Trypanosoma species was also detected in this study. The detection of T. cruzi TcI and TcIV (the ones associated with Chagas disease in Amazon biome) demonstrates the putative importance of these mammal hosts in the epidemiology of the disease in the Acre State.

Corresponding author
Author for correspondence: A.L.R. Roque, E-mail:
Hide All
Barbosa AD, Mackie JT, Stenner R, Gillett A, Irwin P and Ryan U (2016) Trypanosoma teixeirae: a new species belonging to the T. cruzi clade causing trypanosomosis in an Australian little red flying fox (Pteropus scapulatus). Veterinary Parasitology 223, 214221.
Bernard E (2001) Vertical stratification of bat communities in primary forest of Central Amazon, Brazil. Journal of Tropical Ecology 17, 115126.
Bernard E, Tavares VC and Sampaio E (2011) Compilação atualizada das espécies de morcegos (Chiroptera) para a Amazônia Brasileira. Biota Neotropica 11, 3546.
Borghesan TC, Ferreira RC, Takata CS, Campaner M, Borda CC, Paiva F, Milder RV, Teixeira MM and Camargo EP (2013) Molecular phylogenetic redefinition of Herpetomonas (Kinetoplastea, Trypansomatidae) a genus of insect parasites associated with flies. Protist 164, 129152.
Botero A, Cooper C, Thompson CK, Clode PL, Rose K and Thompson RCA (2016) Morphological and Phylogenetic Description of Trypanosoma noyesi sp. nov.: An Australian Wildlife Trypanosome within the T. cruzi Clade. Protist 167, 425439.
Burland TG (2000) DNASTAR's lasergene sequence analysis software. In Misener S and Krawetz SA (eds). Bioinformatics Methods and Protocols, vol. 132, Methods in Molecular Biology, Tonada, USA: Humana Press, pp. 7191.
Carrillo-Araujo M, Taş N, Alcántara-Hernández RJ, Gaona O, Schondube JE, Medellín RA and Falcón LI (2015) Phyllostomid bat microbiome composition is associated to host phylogeny and feeding strategies. Frontiers in Microbiology 6, 447.
Coura JR and Junqueira ACV (2015) Ecological diversity of Trypanosoma cruzi transmission in the Amazon Basin. The main scenaries in the Brazilian Amazon. Acta Tropica 151, 5157.
Coura JR, Albajar-Viñas P and Junqueira ACV (2014) Ecoepidemiology, short history and control of Chagas disease in the endemic countries and the new challenge for non-endemic countries. Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz 109, 856862.
da Costa AP, Nunes PH, Leite BHS, Ferreira JIGDS, Tonhosolo R, da Rosa AR and Marcili A (2016) Diversity of bats trypanosomes in hydroeletric area of Belo Monte in Brazilian Amazonia. Acta Tropica 164, 185193.
Dario MA, Rodrigues MS, da Silva Barros JH, das Chagas Xavier SC, D'Andrea PS, Roque ALR and Jansen AM (2016) Ecological scenario and Trypanosoma cruzi DTU characterization of a fatal acute Chagas disease case transmitted orally (Espírito Santo state, Brazil). Parasites & Vectors 9, 477.
Dechmann DKN, Kalko EKV and Kerth G (2004) Ecology of an exceptional roost: energetic benefits could explain why the bat Lophostoma silvicolum roosts in active termite nests. Evolutionary Ecology Research 6, 10371050.
Díaz MM, Aguirre LF and Barquez RM (2011) Clave de Identificación de los Murciélagos del Cono sur de Sudamérica. Cochabamba, Bolivia: Centro de Estudios en Biología Teórica y Aplicada.
Fenton MB and Simmons NB (2015) Bats, A World of Science and Mystery. Chicago, USA: The University of Chicago Press.
Garcia L, Ortiz S, Osorio G, Torrico MC, Torrico F and Solari A (2012) Phylogenetic analysis of Bolivian bat trypanosomes of the subgenus Schizotrypanum based on cytochrome B sequence and minicircle analyses. PLoS ONE 7, e36578.
Gardner AL (1979) Feeding habits. In Baker RJ, Jones J, Knox J. and Carter DC (eds). Biology of Bats of the New World Family Phyllostomatidae. Part II. Lubbock, USA: The Museum Texas Tech University, pp. 293350.
Gardner AL (2007) Order Chiroptera. In Gardner AL (ed.). Mammals of South America: Volume 1 Marsupials, Xenarthrans, Shrews, and Bats. Chicago, USA: University of Chicago Press, pp. 187498.
Hamilton PB, Cruickshank C, Stevens JR, Teixeira MMG and Mathews F (2012) Parasites reveal movement of bats between the new and old worlds. Molecular Phylogenetic Evolution 63, 521526.
Hoorn C, Wesselingh FP, Ter Steege H, Bermudez MA, Mora A, Sevink J and Jaramillo C (2010) Amazonia through time: Andean uplift, climate change, landscape evolution, and biodiversity. Science 330, 927931.
Kumar S, Stecher G and Tamura K (2016) MEGA7: molecular evolutionary genetics analysis version 7.0 for Bigger Datasets. Molecular Biology and Evolution 33, 18701874.
Lima L, Da Silva FM, Neves L, Attias M, Takata CS, Campaner M and Teixeira MM (2012) Evolutionary insights from Bat Trypanosomes: morphological, developmental and phylogenetic evidence of a new species, Trypanosoma (Schizotrypanum) erneyi sp. nov., in African bats closely related to Trypanosoma (Schizotrypanum) cruzi and allied species. Protist 163, 856872.
Lima L, Espinosa-Álvarez O, Hamilton PB, Neves L, Takata CS, Campaner M and Teixeira MM (2013) Trypanosoma livingstonei: a new species from African bats supports the bat seeding hypothesis for the Trypanosoma cruzi clade. Parasites & Vectors 6, 1.
Lima L, Espinosa-Alvarez O, Pinto CM, Cavazzana M Jr., Pavan AC and Carranza JC (2015) New insights into the evolution of the Trypanosoma cruzi clade provided by a new trypanosome species tightly linked to Neotropical Pteronotus bats and related to an Australian lineage of trypanosomes. Parasites & Vectors 8, 657.
Luis AD, Hayman DT, O'Shea TJ, Cryan PM, Gilbert AT, Pulliam JR, Mills JN, Timonin ME, Willis CK, Cunningham AA, Fooks AR, Rupprecht CE, Wood JL and Webb CT (2013) A comparison of bats and rodents as reservoirs of zoonotic viruses: are bats special? Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 280, 20122753.
Maia da Silva F, Marcili A, Lima L, Cavazzana M Jr, Ortiz PA, Campaner M, Takeda GF, Paiva F, Nunes VL, Camargo EP and Teixeira MM (2009) Trypanosoma rangeli isolates of bats from Central Brazil: genotyping and phylogenetic analysis enable description of a new lineage using spliced-leader gene sequences. Acta Tropica 109, 199207.
Marinkelle CJ (1976) The biology of the trypanosomes of bats. In Lumdsen WHR and Evans DA (eds). Biology of the Kinetoplastida. New York, USA: Academic Press, pp. 175216.
Molyneux D. H. (1991) Trypanosomes of bats. In Kreier JP and Baker JR (eds). Parasitic Protozoa. London, UK: Academic Press, pp. 195223.
Noyes HA, Stevens JR, Teixeira M, Phelan J and Holz P (1999) A nested PCR for the sssrRNA gene detects Trypanosoma binney in the platypus and Trypanosoma sp. in wombats and kangaroos in Australia. International Journal for Parasitology 29, 331339.
Ramírez JD, Hernández C, Montilla M, Zambrano P, Flórez AC and Parra E (2014) First report of human Trypanosoma cruzi infection attributed to TcBat genotype. Zoonoses and Public Health 61, 477479.
R Development Core Team (2010) R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing, Reference Index Version 2.11.1 (2010-05-31). Vienna, Austria: The R Foundation for Statistical Computing.
Rojas D, Vale A, Ferrero V and Navarro L (2011) When did plants become important to leaf-nosed bats? Diversification of feeding habits in the family Phyllostomidae. Molecular Ecology 20, 22172228.
Stoner KE (2000) Leaf selection by the tent-making bat Artibeus watsoni in Asterogyne martiana Palms in Southwestern Costa Rica. Journal of Tropical Ecology 16, 151157.
Vallejo GA, Guhl F, Chiari E and Macedo AM (1999) Species specific detection of Trypanosoma cruzi and Trypanosoma rangeli in vector and mammal hosts by polymerase chain reaction amplification of kinetoplast minicircle DNA. Acta Tropica 72, 203212.
Wilkinson GS and South JM (2002) Life history, ecology and longevity in bats. Aging Cell 1, 1241131.
Wilkinson GS, Carter GG, Bohn KM and Adams DM (2016) Non-kin cooperation in bats. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 371, 20150095.
Zingales B, Miles MA, Campbell DA, Tibayrenc M, Macedo AM, Teixeira MMG, Schijman AG, Llewellyn MS, Lages-Silva E, Machado CR, Andrade SG and Sturm NR (2012) The revised Trypanosoma cruzi subspecific nomenclature: rationale, epidemiological, relevance and research applications. Infection, Genetics and Evolution 12, 240253.
Recommend this journal

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

  • ISSN: 0031-1820
  • EISSN: 1469-8161
  • URL: /core/journals/parasitology
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Type Description Title
Supplementary materials

dos Santos et al supplementary material
Table S2

 Unknown (14 KB)
14 KB


Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 9
Total number of PDF views: 59 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 279 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 16th November 2017 - 19th February 2018. This data will be updated every 24 hours.