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Prevalence of Cryptosporidium species in recreational versus non-recreational water sources

Loganthan, S., Yang, R.ORCID: 0000-0003-2563-2015, Bath, A., Gordon, C. and Ryan, U.ORCID: 0000-0003-2710-9324 (2012) Prevalence of Cryptosporidium species in recreational versus non-recreational water sources. Experimental Parasitology, 131 (4). pp. 399-403.

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Cryptosporidiosis, caused by the protozoan parasite Cryptosporidium, represents the major public health concern of water utilities in developed nations due to its small size, resistance to disinfection and ability to be shed in large numbers in faeces. In Australia, recreational access is not allowed on direct supply sources, however, in Western Australia, limited recreational access to drinking water catchments has been allowed, although only in the outer catchment. Recreational activities within 2. km of the drinking water body is prohibited. The present study compared the amount, prevalence and species of Cryptosporidium in recreational versus non-recreational water catchments in the south west of Western Australia (WA). Recreational water catchments, which allowed swimming and camping had a higher prevalence of Cryptosporidium and the majority of samples were the human-associated C. hominis. Non-recreational catchments had a lower prevalence and all the samples genotyped were C. parvum. Risk analysis identified increasing population as strongly correlated with an increase in the prevalence of Cryptosporidium in recreational catchments. This suggests that recreational access to drinking water catchments is a serious public health risk and government policy limiting activities to the outer catchment should be supported.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
Publisher: Academic Press
Copyright: © 2012 Elsevier Inc.
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