Effects of anthropogenic influence on patterns of infection with enteric zoonotic pathogens in brown mouse lemur, Microcebus rufus, at Ranomafana National Park, Madagascar Open Access

Rautman, Lydia (Spring 2018)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/9s161617d?locale=en


Research on zoonotic transmission of enteric pathogens becomes increasingly relevant as anthropogenic influence brings humans and wildlife into close contact with one another. Previous studies have demonstrated higher rates of infection in primates in proximity to humans than those isolated from humans, but this study uniquely compares interfaces of lemurs with villagers and furthermore examines infection with multiple enteric pathogens. Outcome of infection in Microcebus rufus, the brown mouse lemur, was investigated as a result of type of anthropogenic influence in three study sites near Ranomafana National Park, Southeastern Madagascar. Brown mouse lemurs were trapped and sampled in a forest site (no human contact), near villages (high contact with villagers), and at a campsite (high contact with tourists and villagers). Over half (54.9%) of all lemurs sampled tested positive for at least one pathogen. Prevalence of infection was 11.1% at the forest site, 47.6% near the villages, and 81.0% at the campsite. Infection in Microcebus individuals was correlated with proximity to humans. Within the village study site, infection was geographically clustered. This study hypothesizes that introduction of novel pathogens could be a result of zoonotic transmission from nearby human populations. The results demonstrate the potential for zoonotic infection in a vulnerable species and highlight the need for further investigation as contact between humans and wildlife increases, increasing risk of infection for human and animal populations alike.

Table of Contents


Table of Contents


1.         Introduction                                                               


a.         Madagascar                                                                            1


b.         Zoonotic disease transmission                                               2


c.         Lemurs and Microcebus rufus                                                3


d.         Common zoonotic pathogens in Madagascar                       4


e.         Anthropogenic influence and disease in lemurs                    6


f.          Study objectives and hypotheses                                           8


2.         Methods


a.         Field methods                                                             9


b.         Lab methods                                                                           12


c.         Statistical methods                                                                 14


3.         Results                                                                                    16


4.         Discussion


a.         Zoonoses and Microcebus                                                      18


b.         Infection presence and prevalence                                        19


c.         Site comparisons                                                                    20


d.         Comparison of human and lemur pathogens            22


e.         Other analyses                                                                        23


f.          Summary of discussion                                                           24


g.         Future research                                                                      25


h.         Conclusion                                                                               25


5.         References                                                                                          27


6.         Tables


a.         Table 1                                                                        31


b.         Table 2                                                                        32


c.         Table 3                                                                        33


d.         Table 4                                                                        34


e.         Table 5                                                                        35


f.          Table 6                                                                        36


7.         Figures


a.         Figure 1                                                                                   37


b.         Figure 2                                                                                   38


c.         Figure 3                                                                                   38


d.         Figure 4                                                                                   39


e.         Figure 5                                                                                   40


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