The present study was undertaken to determine the prevalence of leptospires in field rats in and around laboratory animal facilities in Bangalore. 34 rats were trapped alive in and around the laboratory animal facilities in Bangalore. Urine and serum samples from theses field rats were collected. Serum samples were tested for anti-leptospiral antibodies by microscopic agglutination test, while urine samples were subjected for dark field microscopy and polymerase chain reaction to detect the presence of leptospiral antigens. Serology revealed the presence of antileptospiral antibodies in 19 (61.29 percent) field rats and dark field microscopy revealed the presence of leptospiral antigens in 3 (8.82 percent) and 6 (17.65 percent) of urine samples of these field rats. Among the serovars, Icterohaemorrhagiae was predominant followed by Autumnalis and Pyrogens. Serology dark field microscopy and polymerase chain reaction reveals that field rats are major natural carriers and shedders of leptospires.
Leptospires, Zoonosis, Laboratory Animal, Rodent, Antibody, Antigen, Urine, Dark field microscopy,PCR.