In Colombia, communities living in the Andean region are the most affected by Chagas disease due to the presence of the main vectors, the environmental and risk factors associated with house infestation. Triatoma venosa is classified as a secondary vector that is frequently found in the departments of Boyaca and Cundinamarca, but epidemiological information and its association with risk factors in domestic and peridomestic areas is unknown. The study aimed to evaluate housing and environmental characteristics associated with domestic and peridomestic infestation by T. venosa and a risk map was estimated.
The Triatominae (Hemiptera: Reduviidae) are a group of hematophagous insects considered important vectors of Trypanosoma cruzi, the causative agent of Chagas disease. They are widely distributed in America, with rare occurrences in Eastern Asia. However, they are primarily found in the Neotropical region.1 Disease transmission occurs from the southern United States to Argentina, with approximately 25% of the human population at risk and between 700,000 and 800,000 new cases per year.2
At the regional level, Triatoma venosa geographic distribution is constrained to Ecuador,3,4 Bolivia,5 Costa Rica, Panama, and Colombia.6,7 In Colombia, this species has been found in the Magdalena River Valley and in the Western Andean Mountains at altitudes of 1600–2200 meters above sea level8 in the departments of Antioquia, Boyaca, Casanare, Choco, Cundinamarca, Norte de Santander, Santander, and Tolima.9
Most of the studies that have evaluated the vector species of Chagas disease in Colombia have focused on the primary vector. Few published papers have included epidemiological information for T. venosa that describes the species’ distribution and genetic characteristics.5,10–14 None have evaluated the potential factors associated with the infestation, nor have they developed any predictive maps.
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Facultad de Medicina
Gabriel Jaime Parra Henao
Investigador | Santa Marta
Doctor en Biología