Strongyloides procyonis Little, 1966 was detected about 45 years ago in raccoons (Procyon lotor) of southern Louisiana, U.S.A., and was demonstrated experimentally to cause creeping eruption and a short-lived intestinal infection in a healthy human volunteer. After its description and demonstration of its pathogenicity in humans, S. procyonis has not been found in raccoons in North America despite repeated surveys. During a survey on feral raccoons in Japan, S. procyonis parasitic females were identified in 66 (28.3%) of 233 raccoons collected between May 2004 and January 2005. The number of parasitic females recovered from individual raccoons was 1–197 (geomean, 3.2). Both the morphological features and the nucleotide sequences of the small and large subunit ribosomal RNA genes (SSU/LSU rDNA) of S. procyonis closely resembled those of zoonotic Strongyloides stercoralis. The sequences of internal transcribed spacer (ITS)1 and 28S rDNA could differentiate clearly these 2 species. Awareness of S. procyonis in raccoons in North America and other places worldwide where raccoons are introduced and naturalized is important to assess the epidemiological significance of this potentially zoonotic helminth species.

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