Prevalence of Ectoparasites and the Seroepidemiology of Murine Typhus in Murine-like Animals at International Ports in Taiwan, 2004-2011

Chia-Hao Chien1、Pei-Fang Chiang1、Hsi-Chieh Wang1、Kuan-Yu Chen2、Min-Cheng Lin2、Ho-Sheng Wu1

2012 Vol.28 NO.22

Correspondence Author: Hsi-Chieh Wang


Murine typhus, one of the forth category National Notifiable Communicable Diseases in Taiwan, is caused by the Rickettsia typhi, and is mainly transmitted by fleas, Xenopsylla cheopis, that infest murine-like animals. In this article, we addressed the prevalence of ectoparasites of murine-like animals at major international ports in Taiwan and did the serum epidemiology study in murine-like animals between November 2004 and 2011. The total number of murine-like animals underwent examination was 4,260, and 2,358 (55.35%) were Rattus norvegicus. On the other hand, the total number of ectoparasites captured from murine-like animals was 4,469, and 2,103 (45.04%) were Xenopsylla cheopis. The average seropositive rate of murine typhus among these murine-like animals in international ports was 8.22%, while the seropositive rates in Kaohsiung Port and Taichung Port were 26.12% and 18.09 %, respectively; both were higher than the average. In both ports, the linear correlation between the Xenopsylla cheopis index and the seropositive rate of murine typhus in Rattus norvegicus was not significant.