Sand Fly Fever

The sand fly fever group of viruses (Bunyaviridae: Phlebovirus) includes at least seven viral serotypes that have been isolated from humans: the Alenquer, Candiru, Chagres, and Punta Toro viruses of Central and South America and the Naples, Sicilian, and Toscana viruses of southern Europe and North Africa, eastward to China. Sand fly fever, also known as phlebotomus fever and pap-pataci fever or papatasi fever, is a self-limited, influenzalike, nonrespiratory illness of 2-5 days' duration. Acute onset, fever, malaise, nausea, headache, and retro-ocular, lower back, and muscular pain are characteristic. Weakness and mental depression may persist after recovery. Encephalitis may occur following infection with Toscana virus. The intrinsic incubation period of the virus is 3— 4 days. Virus is present in the blood from 1 day before to 2 days after onset of fever. The suspected reservoirs are rodents and primates.

Known vectors of sand fly fever group viruses are L. trapidoi and L. ylephiletor in the New World, and P. papatasi, P. perfiliewi, and P. perniciosus in the Old World. The extrinsic incubation period of the virus is about 7 days, after which time the sand fly is infective for life. Transovarial transmission has been demonstrated in several species. In Europe, epidemics of sand fly fever commonly occur in the summer and fall, corresponding with two separate generations of P. papatasi.

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