Candidatus Neoehrlichia Mikurensis : Recent Insights and Future Perspectives on Clinical Cases, Vectors, and Reservoirs in Europe
Purpose of Review Ticks are among the most important vectors of pathogens concerning animal and human health worldwide. Candidatus Neoehrlichia mikurensis (CNM) is a recently discovered intracellular bacterium of the order Rickettsiales associated with human clinical cases. In this review, we give an overview on the current knowledge of CNM in connection with diagnosis, clinical cases, and treatment and discuss the newest developments in the knowledge on potential vectors and reservoirs. Recent Findings Small mammals and in particular rodents seem to be the most likely reservoir hosts for CNM in Europe. Ticks may be competent vectors in which the pathogen is transstadially transmitted. In both, vectors and reservoirs, vertical transmission is controversially discussed. Some recent studies suggested that CNM may be rather rodent- than tick-associated. As regards clinical cases, mainly immunosuppressed persons are affected but evidence of contact to CNM has also been established in some healthy people. Many other aspects such as important life history traits of CNM remain unknown and neglected in both research and diagnosis. Summary CNM is a highly interesting tick-borne and rodent-associated pathogen that under the right preconditions can cause severe disease in human beings. The cultivation of this intracellular bacterium of the order Rickettsiales seems to be the most pressing task to tackle in the future research on this pathogen.