Tularaemia is a highly contagious infectious zoonosis caused by the bacterial agent Francisella tularensis. The aim of this study was to investigate the presence of antibodies to F. tularensis in febrile patients in northeastern Kenya. During 2014–2015, 730 patients were screened for anti-F. tularensis antibodies using a combination of ELISA and Western blot. Twenty-seven (3.7%) individuals were positive for F. tularensis. Tularaemia was not suspected by the treating clinicians in any of them. Our results suggest that tularaemia may be present in Kenya but remain unreported, and emphasizes the need for local clinicians to broaden their diagnostic repertoire when evaluating patients with undifferentiated febrile illness.
This work arises from the Zoonoses and Emerging Livestock Systems (ZELS) programme.
Njeru J, Tomaso H, Mertens K, Henning K, Wareth G, Heller R, Kariuki S, Fèvre E, Neubauer H, Pletz M (2017). Serological evidence of Francisella tularensis in febrile patients seeking treatment at remote hospitals, northeastern Kenya, 2014-2015. New Microbes New Infect. 19: 62-66
Serological evidence ofin febrile patients seeking treatment at remote hospitals, northeastern Kenya, 2014-2015