Determination of Fauna and Seasonal Activity of Phlebotomine Sandflies (Diptera: Psychodidae: Phlebotominae) as Vectors of Disease Agents in Southwestern Iran

Document Type : Original Article


1Infectious and Tropical Diseases Research Center, Health Research Institute, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, 2Department of Medical Entomology, School of Health, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran



Aims: The current study determined the faunistic composition, sex ratio, seasonal abundance, and physiological status of sandflies as
vectors of leishmaniasis in Abadan County, Khuzestan Province, Iran, during 2015–2016. Materials and Methods: Sandflies were
captured using sticky paper traps installed at sunset and collected after sunrise at indoor and outdoor locations. Sandflies were mounted
on slides in Puri’s medium and identified using diagnostic keys. Results: Overall, 13 species (2 species of Phlebotomus Rondani and Bert
1840 and 11 species of Sergentomyia Franca and Parrot 1920) were identified among the 6173 sandflies collected including Phlebotomus
papatasi, Scopoli, 1786 (45.64%); Phlebotomus alexandri, Sinton, 1928 (31.31%); and Sergentomyia sintoni, Pringle, 1953 (15.9%). Four
species, including Sergentomyia tiberiadis, Adler, Theodor, and Lourie, 1930; Sergentomyia clydei, Sinton, 1928; Sergentomyia antennata,
Newstead, 1912; and Sergentomyia christophersi, Sinton, 1927, are reported for the first time in Abadan. The sex ratios of the sandflies of genus
Phlebotomus and Sergentomyia were 362.4 and 92.2 males per 100 females, respectively. The analysis of physiological status of sandflies in
outdoors and indoors revealed 61.2% and 71.1% unfed, 2.9% and 4.8% blood‑fed, 26.7% and 17.7% semi‑gravid, and 9.2% and 6.4% gravid,
respectively. Conclusion: P. papatasi and P. alexandri may play important as vectors of cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) in Khuzestan Province,
due to their high abundance and monthly prevalence in regions affected with CL.