Synanthropic Ants as Vectors of Pathogens in Hospitals of Iran

Document Type: Original Article


1 Assistant Professor, Department of Medical Entomology & Vector Control, School of Public Health, Infectious and Tropical Diseases Research Center, Hormozgan Heath Institute, Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences, Bandar Abbas, Iran

2 Associate Professor, Infectious and Tropical Diseases Research Center, Hormozgan Heath Institute, Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences, Bandar Abbas, Iran

3 Infectious and Tropical Diseases Research Center, Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences, Bandar Abbas, Iran

4 Reference Laboratory, Hormozgan, Bandar Abbas, Iran

5 Assistant professor, Department of Medical Entomology and Vector Control, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran


Background: Synanthropic ants can transmit pathogens especially in hospital environments,  but this fact had not been confirmed in Palaearctic region. This is the first study on confirming this ability of ants in this region.
Methods: Three hospitals of Bandar Abbas, Iran have been selected for monthly sampling of ants in their various wards. The main processes on collected samples were washing out and culturing on various culture media.
Results: As many as 250 individuals from 3 sub-families and 7 species of ants have been collected. Most of the collected species were from Formicinae sub-family. Paratrechina longicornis and Camponotus sp. were the most common species. At least 12 species of pathogens were found on ant species in the study.
Conclusion: Environmental sanitation with emphasis on renewal of the hospital structures and informing the personnel about the ability of ants on transmission of pathogens are recommended for preventing the harmful impacts of ants.


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