Front Cell Infect Microbiol 2019 28;9. Epub 2019 Jan 28.
Neuroinflammation Group, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Macquarie University, Sydney, NSW, Australia.
There are 17 human-biting ticks known in Australia. The bites of , and can cause paralysis, inflammation, and severe local and systemic reactions in humans, respectively. Six ticks, including , and may transmit , or subsp. . These bacterial pathogens cause Q fever, Queensland tick typhus (QTT), Flinders Island spotted fever (FISF), and Australian spotted fever (ASF). It is also believed that babesiosis can be transmitted by ticks to humans in Australia. In addition, , and ticks may play active roles in transmission of other pathogens that already exist or could potentially be introduced into Australia. These pathogens include spp., spp., spp., spp., Dera Ghazi Khan virus (DGKV), tick-borne encephalitis virus (TBEV), Lake Clarendon virus (LCV), Saumarez Reef virus (SREV), Upolu virus (UPOV), or Vinegar Hill virus (VINHV). It is important to regularly update clinicians' knowledge about tick-borne infections because these bacteria and arboviruses are pathogens of humans that may cause fatal illness. An increase in the incidence of tick-borne infections of human may be observed in the future due to changes in demography, climate change, and increase in travel and shipments and even migratory patterns of birds or other animals. Moreover, the geographical conditions of Australia are favorable for many exotic ticks, which may become endemic to Australia given an opportunity. There are some human pathogens, such as and that are not currently present in Australia, but can be transmitted by some human-biting ticks found in Australia, such as , if they enter and establish in this country. Despite these threats, our knowledge of Australian ticks and tick-borne diseases is in its infancy.