Bartonella-Like DNA Detected in Ixodes tasmani Ticks (Acari: Ixodida) Infesting Koalas (Phascolarctos cinereus) in Victoria, Australia
Inger-Marie E. Vilcins,1 Michael Kosoy,2 Julie M. Old,3 and Elizabeth M. Deane4
1Department of Biological Sciences, Division of Environmental and Life Sciences Macquarie University, North Ryde, NSW, Australia.
2Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Fort Collins, Colorado.
3School of Natural Science, Hawkesbury Campus, University of Western Sydney, NSW, Australia.
4The Chancellery, Australian National University, Canberra, ACT, 0200, Australia.
A total of 42 ticks comprising Ixodes tasmani (n = 41) and Ixodes trichosuri (n = 1) were collected from wild koalas
(Phascolarctos cinereus) at the Koala Convention Centre, Philip Island, Victoria, Australia and screened for the
presence of Bartonella using the target gene gltA. Bartonella-like DNA was detected in 4 of the 19 pooled tick
samples (21%). All positive ticks were male. Analysis of partial sequences for thegltA gene indicated the presence of a Bartonella-related species similar to that reported in another Ixodid species. This is the first report of
Bartonella-like organisms in a native Australian marsupial.