場所：りんくうキャンパス２F第１講義室（Lecture room #1）
Research on vector and vector borne infectious diseases
R.P.V.J. Rajapakse, BVSc, PhD
Senior Professor in Parasitology,
Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, University of Peradeniya
Vector-borne infectious diseases, is one of the emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases in Sri Lanka as similar as other tropical countries. Although Sri Lanka has reached near elimination levels in Malaria and Lymphatic Filariasis, Dengue and Leishmaniasis, Rickettsiosis continues to be a challenge. Most of the vector borne infections in human are zoonoses, thus as veterinarians are the key persons to control these infections. Veterinary science is a multidisciplinary subject, which includes research on diagnosis, control, prevention and treatment of animal diseases. All animal sciences essentially affect human health either directly or indirectly. Veterinary science protects the human health and well-being by preventing and controlling emerging infectious zoonoses. More than half of the human diseases are animal originated, cause multi host pathogens. Rickettsiosis, leptospirosis, dengue infection and leishmaniasis are major emerging and re-emerging vector borne and zoonotic infectious diseases in Sri Lanka.
Rickettsial organisms infect humans causing a wider array of clinical features and have re-emerged in Sri Lanka where three known disease entities; spotted fever group, murine typhus and scrub typhus do exist. These diseases cause clinical illnesses varying from mild febrile illness to severe multiple organ involvement even leading to fatal outcomes when there is a delay in diagnosis. Hard ticks, Amblyomma sp are possible vector in Sri Lanka. However, reservoir animals for the ricketssial infection in human are still to be identified. Leishmaniasis is an emerging public health problem since late 2000 in Sri Lanka and present a new case appeared every day. At the beginning, the disease was predominantly among the armed forces personnel. Today almost all cases are from civilians indicating further spreading the disease within the district. Since the causative organism of leishmaniasis in Sri Lanka is identified as L. donovani, causative organism of visceral leishmaniasis (VL: Kala Azar) in India, though different zymodeme, the possibilities of visceralising the parasite causing VL cannot be excluded. As veterinarians, we have more responsibility to identify the reservoir animals and mode of transmission through specific vector species. Therefore, we are conducting research on the parasite, the vector, and reservoir host/s, so that a viable control strategy can be devised on firm scientific foundation. Dengue fever is an arboviral infection transmitted by mosquitoes of the genus Aedes. In Sri Lanka, dengue fever epidemics have been occurring with increased magnitudes but the worst epidemic was reported in 2009 with 35008 cases and 346 deaths of which 6638 cases and 51 deaths reported in the Central Province of Sri Lanka. Thus under one health concepts as a veterinarians, and academics, we are responsible on vector borne and zoonotic diseases as WHO report 83% of infectious disease are zoonosis and new zoonosis infection re-emerging and emerging in the worlds.