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Koizumi N.,Japan National Institute of Infectious Diseases | Izumiya H.,Japan National Institute of Infectious Diseases | Mu J.-J.,Center for Research | Arent Z.,Agri Food and Biosciences Institute of Northern Ireland | And 11 more authors.
Infection, Genetics and Evolution | Year: 2015

Leptospira spp. are the causative agents of a worldwide zoonosis, leptospirosis, maintained by various mammals. Each Leptospira serovar is frequently associated with a particular maintenance host, and recently, Leptospira genotype-host association has also been suggested to limit serovars to restricted areas. We investigated the molecular characteristics of L. interrogans and L. borgpetersenii which were isolated from small feral and wild animals in four East Asian states using multiple-locus variable-number tandem repeat analysis (MLVA).MLVA using 11 loci was performed on 110 L. interrogans serogroups from Japan (79 strains of 5 serogroups from 3 animal species), Philippines (21; 3; 2), Taiwan (7; 2; 3), and Vietnam (3; 1; 1). A MLVA method using 4 loci for L. borgpetersenii was established and performed on 52 isolates from Japan (26; 3; 7), Philippines (13; 1; 2), and Taiwan (13; 1; 3). In L. interrogans, serogroups Autumnalis and Hebdomadis appeared more genetically diverse than serogroups Bataviae, Grippotyphosa, Icterohaemorrhagiae, Pomona, or Pyrogenes. The former serogroup strains with the exception of one Hebdomadis strain were isolated from Apodemus speciosus while all the latter serogroup strains with the exception of Grippotyphosa were isolated from Rattus norvegicus. L. borgpetersenii was isolated from at least 11 animal species while L. interrogans was isolated from five species, which might suggest a wider host range for L. borgpetersenii. Broad host preference in a single genotype was also observed, which colonized not only different species of the same genera but also multiple animal genera.This study demonstrates that there may be variability in the range of genetic diversity among different Leptospira serogroups, which may be attributed to maintenance host animals and environmental factors. © 2015.

Amgalanbaatar A.,Jichi Medical University | Hosoda K.,Civil International Corporation | Shimomura H.,Jichi Medical University
Lipids | Year: 2015

Abstract This study demonstrated that the cells of Helicobacter felis and Helicobacter cinaedi spontaneously absorb cholesterol added to the medium. A recent study by our group has revealed that phosphatidylethanolamine (PtdEtn) of Helicobacter pylori contains myristic acid as the most predominant saturated fatty acid and that the PtdEtn of this bacterium binds cholesterol more selectively than cholesteryl ester. We, therefore, isolated the PtdEtn from the two Helicobacter species to analyze the hydrophobic interaction between cholesterol and its glycerophospholipid. PtdEtn of the Helicobacter bacteria interacted more selectively with cholesterol than with cholesteryl ester, and the degree of the selective binding of cholesterol was higher in the PtdEtn than in the phosphatidylglycerol-cardiolipin of the same bacteria. These results suggest the possibility that the cells of H. felis and H. cinaedi may contain abundant PtdEtn with myristic acid. On this basis, we analyzed the PtdEtn molecular species of the Helicobacter bacteria and demonstrated that the PtdEtn containing myristic acid accounts for more than 35% in the total PtdEtn. These results suggest that the myristoyl PtdEtn takes part in the absorption of cholesterol in H. felis and H. cinaedi. © 2015 AOCS.

Komatsu N.,Civil International Corporation | Komatsu N.,Azabu University | Kawakami Y.,Azabu University | Banzai A.,Azabu University | And 2 more authors.
Tropical Biomedicine | Year: 2015

The so-called “Ogasawara cockroaches” were examined by morphological observations and by breeding experiments to elucidate their actual taxonomical status. Fourteen groups (isolate) of “Ogasawara cockroaches” collected from Iwoto-A, Iwoto-B, Hahajima, Chichijima, Nishijima, Nakodojima, Tokunoshima-A, Tokunoshima-B, Okinawato- A, Okinawa-B, Amamiooshima, Miyakojima, Ishigakijima and Hawaii, were bred and passaged in our laboratory. Cockroaches collected from the field were first reared individually and the sexes of their offspring examined. Cockroaches collected from Iwoto, Tokushima and Okinawa, were found to consist of two groups; those whose offspring were all female and the other whose offspring consist of both male and female. Cross-breeding experiments showed that individuals from the group that did not produce any male but only female offspring were parthenogenetic. On the contrary, the group that have bisexual individuals produced both male and female offspring in a ratio of 1:1. Our results show that the so-called “Ogasawara cockroaches” consist of 2 species, namely, Pycnoscelus surinamensis and Pycnoscelus indicus. There are areas in which both species co-habitated together and there are also areas in which either only one of the two species can be found. The group that reproduces only female offspring and only through parthenogenesis was identified as P. surinamensis. The group that reproduces heterosexually and produce male and female offspring was identified as P. indicus. Thus, the so-called “Ogasawara cockroaches” found in Japan actually consist of 2 species, namely, P. surinamensis and P. indicus, which can be differentiated using the solitary breeding method to demonstrate parthenogenesis in the former and the need for sexual reproduction in the latter. © 2015, Malaysian Society for Parasitology. All rights reserved.

Tokiwa T.,Tokyo Medical and Dental University | Harunari T.,Ikari Corporation | Tanikawa T.,Ikari Corporation | Komatsu N.,Civil International Corporation | And 8 more authors.
Parasitology International | Year: 2012

We conducted a pilot survey of genetic variation of A. cantonensis using small subunit (SSU) ribosomal (r) RNA and mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (coxI) gene sequences. Two distinct SSU genotypes (G1 and G2) were identified among 17 individual A. cantonensis worms from 17 different geographical localities in Japan, Mainland China, Taiwan, and Thailand. The partial coxI sequences were determined for 83 worms from 18 different geographical localities from Japan, Mainland China, Taiwan, and Thailand. Phylogenetic analysis showed eight distinct coxI haplotypes (ac1 to ac8). In 16 out of 18 localities, only a single coxI haplotype was found. However, in two localities, two coxI haplotypes coexisted. The common haplotypes found were: haplotype ac1 (Tokyo, Chiba, Kanagawa, Amamioshima Island, and Taichung), haplotype ac2 (Ishikawa, Shenzhen, and Lianjiang), haplotype ac5 (the Okinawa and the Ogasawara Islands), and haplotype ac7 (Miyagi, Aichi, and Kanagawa). Each of these regions is separated from the others by high mountain ranges or oceans. In addition, the lower genetic variation and particular geographical distribution of A. cantonensis in each location could indicate a founder effect, which may have resulted from multiple independent origins, and suggests that haplotypes migrated from endemic areas via human-related transportation. © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

Tokiwa T.,Tokyo Medical and Dental University | Hashimoto T.,Japan Wildlife Research Center | Yabe T.,Rat Control Consulting | Komatsu N.,Civil International Corporation | And 2 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2013

Background:Angiostrongylus cantonensis (Chen, 1935) is a parasite of murid rodents and causative agent of human neuro-angiostrongyliasis. In 2011, the Ogasawara Islands in the western North Pacific were assigned a World Natural Heritage site status. The occurrence of A. cantonensis is well documented in the Chichijima, Hahajima, and Anijima Islands. However, the occurrence of A. cantonensis in the other islands of the Ogasawara Islands has not been reported.Methodology/Principal Findings:Between March 2010 and July 2011, 57 Rattus norvegicus and 79 R. rattus were collected from 9 islands (the Hahajima group: Anejima, Imoutojima, Meijima, Mukohjima, and Hirajima; Chichijima group: Minamijima; Mukojima group: Nakoudojima and Yomejima; and Iwojima group: Iwojima). Adult nematodes were found in the pulmonary artery of 46 R. norvegicus collected in the 5 islands of the Hahajima group (Anejima, Meijima, Imoutojima, Hrajima, and Mukohjima Islands). These nematodes were identified by molecular analysis as A. cantonensis. Comparison of the mitochondrial DNA sequences confirmed that all the samples from the Ogasawara Islands shared only a single lineage of A. cantonensis, which has been previously detected in the Okinawa, Hawaii, and Brazil.Conclusions/Significance:We describe new endemic foci of rat angiostrongyliasis in the Hahajima group (Anejima, Meijima, Imoutojima, Hirajima, and Mukohjima Islands) of the Ogasawara Islands. These findings indicate that the endemic foci of A. cantonensis are widely distributed in the Ogasawara Islands. Although human cases have not yet been reported in the Ogasawara Islands, the widespread detection of A. cantonensis could be of importance from the perspective of public health. © 2013 Tokiwa et al.

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