An increase in the incidence of human visceral leishmaniasis (HVL) has been detected in recent years on Margarita Island, located off the NE coast of Venezuela. Recent studies have revealed reactivity to rK39 antigen ( Leishmania chagasi
) in 20% of 541 sera from domestic dogs in endemic communities; PCR reactions were positive using primers for the L. donovani
complex. Here we report that isolates from human and canine infection, identified by isoenzyme analysis, correspond to L. infantum
, zymodeme MON-1. This appears to be the first isolation and identification of an isolate from HVL on Margarita Island and demonstrates the presence of this zymodeme in the canine population.