The genus Cryptosporidium comprises a group of protozoan parasites that infect a broad variety of vertebrates causing severe diarrhoeal illness in immunocompromised as well as immunocompetent hosts. Although molecular heterogeneity of the genus is being increasingly recognised, traditional diagnostic methods do not discriminate all species/subtypes, and population genetic studies of these parasites, using discriminatory molecular markers, have only been published recently. In Denmark, Cryptosporidium research has focussed mainly on detection methods, pathogenicity and veterinary aspects. The present paper gives an overview of recent and ongoing Cryptosporidium research in Denmark with an emphasis on molecular approaches to study epidemiology and transmission.
Species of Cryptosporidium and Giardia can infect humans and wildlife and have the potential to be transmitted between these 2 groups; yet, very little is known about these protozoans in marine wildlife. Feces of river otters (Lontra canadensis), a common marine wildlife species in the Puget Sound Georgia Basin, were examined for species of Cryptosporidium and Giardia to determine their role in the epidemiology of these pathogens. Using ZnSO4 flotation and immunomagnetic separation, followed by direct immunofluorescent antibody detection (IMS/DFA), we identified Cryptosporidium sp. oocysts in 9 fecal samples from 6 locations and Giardia sp. cysts in 11 fecal samples from 7 locations. The putative risk factors of proximate human population and degree of anthropogenic shoreline modification were not associated with the detection of Cryptosporidium or Giardia spp. in river otter feces. Amplification of DNA from the IMS/DFA slide scrapings was successful for 1 sample containing > 500 Cryptosporidium sp. oocysts. Sequences from the Cryptosporidium 18S rRNA and the COWP loci were most similar to the ferret Cryptosporidium sp. genotype. River otters could serve as reservoirs for Cryptosporidium and Giardia species in marine ecosystems. More work is needed to better understand the zoonotic potential of the genotypes they carry as well as their implications for river otter health.
As part of the C-EnterNet surveillance program of the Public Health Agency of Canada, 122 pooled swine manure samples from 10 farms in Ontario, Canada were collected and tested for Giardia and Cryptosporidium. Giardia duodenalis cysts and Cryptosporidium spp. oocysts were detected using immunofluorescence microscopy. Nested-polymerase chain reaction protocols were performed to amplify the small subunit rRNA gene and the ?-giardin gene for G. duodenalis, and the small subunit rRNA gene and the heat shock protein-70 gene for Cryptosporidium spp. The DNA amplicons were sequenced to determine genotypes and species. A mixed multivariable method was used to compare the presence of Giardia and Cryptosporidium in different stages of production. Both Giardia cysts and Cryptosporidium oocysts were present on all tested farms, with 50.8% of the samples positive for G. duodenalis and 44.3% positive for Cryptosporidium spp. by microscopy, and 66.4% and 55.7%, respectively, positive by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). No significant agreement was observed between microscopy and PCR method to detect Giardia and Cryptosporidium (p0.05), however, it was less frequent (odds ratio, OR=0.21 [0.07, 0.63]) among sows. Cryptosporidium was more likely (OR=3.6 [1.3, 9.9]) to be detected in manure pits and weaners (OR=3.3 [1.1, 10.0]) compared to finisher pigs, and it was less frequent (OR=0.06 [0.007, 0.55]) in sows than in finishers (p
In order to monitor epidemiological trends, Cryptosporidium-positive samples (n=4509) from diarrhoeic patients were typed. Compared to the previous 4 years, the proportion of Cryptosporidium hominis cases in 2004-2006 increased to 57·3%, while 38·5% were C. parvum. The remaining 4·2% cases included mixed C. parvum and C. hominis infections, C. meleagridis, C. felis, C. ubiquitum and a novel genotype. When the typing results were combined with enhanced surveillance data to monitor risk exposures, C. hominis was linked to urban dwelling, previous diarrhoea in the household, any travel especially abroad, and using a swimming or paddling pool. C. parvum was linked to having a private water supply, contact with surface water, visiting or living on a farm, and contact with farm animal faeces. The proportion of laboratory-confirmed indigenous cases acquired from direct contact with farm animals was estimated to be 25% for C. parvum and 10% of all reported Cryptosporidium cases.
The genetic diversity of Cryptosporidium spp. and Giardia duodenalis from dairy cattle and pigs in Denmark was determined in the present study. Faecal samples from 1237 pigs and 1150 cattle originating from 50 sow herds and 50 dairy herds, respectively, were analysed for the presence of the two parasites by immunofluorescence microscopy. A large proportion of the (oo)cyst containing samples were selected for molecular characterization. Sequencing and phylogenetic analysis of the 18S rDNA locus and/or the HSP70 gene of 183 pig and 154 cattle isolates of Cryptosporidium revealed the presence of C. suis, pig genotype II, C. parvum (cattle genotype), C. bovis, Cryptosporidium deer-like genotype and a novel C. suis-like genotype. For both cattle and pigs, a host age-related change in distribution of species/genotypes was observed. The zoonotic C. parvum (cattle genotype) was most prevalent in young calves. For Giardia, 82 and 145 isolates from pigs and cattle, respectively, were analysed at the 18S rDNA locus and/or the gdh gene. Giardia isolates belonging to the zoonotic Assemblage A was found in both young and older calves, as well as in weaners and piglets, whereas cows seemed to be infected purely by isolates of the livestock group, Assemblage E.
Department of Clinical Sciences, Division of Ruminant Medicine and Veterinary Epidemiology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, P.O. Box 7054, SE-750 07 Uppsala, Sweden. email@example.com
Cryptosporidium positive samples from 176 preweaned calves, young stock and cows of 48 herds were subjected to molecular characterisation of the 18S rRNA gene to determine which species are present in Swedish dairy cattle. In addition, samples characterised as Cryptosporidium parvum were further analysed at the GP60 gene to investigate distribution and zoonotic potential of subtypes. The 18S rRNA gene was successfully sequenced in 110 samples, with Cryptosporidium bovis in 83, C. parvum in 15, Cryptosporidium ryanae in 10, and Cryptosporidium andersoni in two samples. C. bovis was the most common species, being identified in 74% of calf samples, in 77% of young stock samples and in 100% of cow samples. The youngest calves infected with C. bovis were 7 days old, showing that the prepatent period is shorter than the previously stated 10 days. C. parvum was detected in 15 calves from nine farms, and samples were clustered in the southern parts of Sweden. Diarrhoeic calf samples contained C. parvum, C. bovis or C. ryanae. Sequencing of the GP60 gene was successful in 13 of the C. parvum samples. Eight subtypes, including three novel ones, were detected. Four of the subtypes have previously been identified in humans. This indicates that there is a zoonotic potential in C. parvum infected Swedish dairy calves.
Cryptosporidium sp. was found in 3 out of 49 caribou (Rangifer tarandus) from northern Alaska. Segments of both the 18S ribosomal RNA and the heat shock protein genes were amplified from the caribou isolate and compared with that obtained from an isolate from a wild white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) in Virginia as well as other species and isolates available from GenBank. Analyses showed the white-tailed deer isolate to be identical with the C. parvum cattle genotype; however, the caribou isolate represents a new genotype closely related to C. serpentis, C. muris, and C. andersoni. Giardia sp. was not detected in any of the caribou samples nor was Cryptosporidium sp. or Giardia sp. detected in any of the 42 moose (Alces alces) samples examined.
This study describes the epidemiology and symptoms in 271 cryptosporidiosis patients in Stockholm County, Sweden. Species/genotypes were determined by polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment-length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) of the Cryptosporidium oocyst wall protein (COWP) and 18S rRNA genes. Species were C. parvum (n=111), C. hominis (n=65), C. meleagridis (n=11), C. felis (n=2), Cryptosporidium chipmunk genotype 1 (n=2), and a recently described species, C. viatorum (n=2). Analysis of the Gp60 gene revealed five C. hominis allele families (Ia, Ib, Id, Ie, If), and four C. parvum allele families (IIa, IIc, IId, IIe). Most C. parvum cases (51%) were infected in Sweden, as opposed to C. hominis cases (26%). Clinical manifestations differed slightly by species. Diarrhoea lasted longer in C. parvum cases compared to C. hominis and C. meleagridis cases. At follow-up 25-36 months after disease onset, 15% of the patients still reported intermittent diarrhoea. In four outbreaks and 13 family clusters, a single subtype was identified, indicating a common infection source, which emphasizes the value of genotyping for epidemiological investigations.
Nearly 690 raw surface water samples were collected during a 6-year period from multiple watersheds in the South Nation River basin, Ontario, Canada. Cryptosporidium oocysts in water samples were enumerated, sequenced, and genotyped by detailed phylogenetic analysis. The resulting species and genotypes were assigned to broad, known host and human infection risk classes. Wildlife/unknown, livestock, avian, and human host classes occurred in 21, 13, 3, and
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Cites: FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2000 Aug 15;189(2):189-9410930736
To investigate sporadic human cryptosporidiosis trends in the United Kingdom, we tested 3,030 Cryptosporidium spp.-positive fecal samples, submitted for routine typing in 2007-2008, for C. cuniculus. C. cuniculus prevalence was 1.2%; cases were mostly indigenous and occurred across all age groups. Most occurred during August-October and may be linked to exposure opportunities.