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Molecular variation in Giardia

Thompson, R.C.A. and Meloni, B.P. (1993) Molecular variation in Giardia. Acta Tropica, 53 (3-4). pp. 167-184.

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Molecular characterisation of species within the genus Giardia has revealed that much of the phenotypic heterogeneity, particularly within the species G. duodenalis, has a genetic basis. The source of this genetic variation appears to arise from predominantly asexual, clonal reproduction, although occasional bouts of sexual reproduction cannot be ruled out. Genetic variation is extensive with some clones widely distributed and others seemingly unique and localised to a particular endemic focus. Little attention has been given to the molecular epidemiology of Giardia infections. Future studies should be directed at studying the ecology and dynamics of transmission of Giardia clones, particularly in localised areas, and to evaluating the factors that serve to maintain genetic diversity between clones, especially the role of inter-clonal competition. Future research using molecular techniques should aim to identify and follow Giardia clones in nature and correlate genetic typing with important clinical and epidemiological characteristics such as virulence, drug sensitivity and zoonotic potential.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Veterinary Studies
Publisher: Elsevier BV
Copyright: © 1993 Published by Elsevier B.V.
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