Annual Review of Entomology (2019) 64, 149-165
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Vectors of babesiosis
Annual Review of Entomology 64, 149-165
Abstract: Babesiosis, caused by piroplasmid protozoans in the genus Babesia, is arguably the most important vector-borne disease of livestock and companion animals and is growing in importance as a zoonosis. Ixodid ticks were identified as vectors more than a hundred years ago, but the particular tick species transmitting some significant pathogens are still unknown. Moreover, it is only recently that the complexity of the pathogen–tick relationship has been revealed as a result of studies enabled by gene expression and RNA interference methodology. In this article, we provide details of demonstrated and incriminated vectors, maps of the current knowledge of vector distribution, a summary of established features of the pathogen life cycle in the vector, and an outline of molecular research on pathogen–tick relationships. The article concludes with a discussion of vector ecology and disease epidemiology in a global-change context and with suggestions for future research.
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