Molecular and biological characterisation of Cryptosporidium in pigs.
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OBJECTIVE: Genetic and biological characterisation of 12 isolates of Cryptosporidium from pigs and comparing them with Cryptosporidium isolates from humans and cattle. DESIGN: Cryptosporidium isolates from pigs were compared with those obtained from human and cattle using rDNA sequence analysis. The infectivity of two of the porcine isolates was determined in neonatal mice and the clinical history of the infected pigs recorded. RESULTS: Pig-derived isolates of Cryptosporidium exhibited two distinct genotypes; a porcine genotype and a bovine genotype, which is common to cattle and other livestock. The porcine genotype did not produce any infection in neonatal mice whereas the bovine genotype did. CONCLUSION: Two distinct genetically and biologically differing strains of Cryptosporidium appeared to be associated with acute diarrhoea in pigs. Whether Cryptosporidium was a primary or secondary pathogen is unclear but warrants further investigation. As the bovine genotype is known to infect humans, the results suggest that pigs can act as reservoirs of cryptosporidial infections for humans and other live-stock. The zoonotic potential of the pig-adapted genotype is uncertain and requires further study.
|Publication Type:||Journal Article|
|Murdoch Affiliation:||Western Australian State Agricultural Biotechnology Centre|
School of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
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