Subtype analysis of Blastocystis isolates in Swedish patients.
ABSTRACT Blastocystis is a genetically diverse and widespread intestinal parasite of animals and humans with controversial pathogenic potential. At least nine subtypes of Blastocystis have been found in humans. The genetic diversity of Blastocystis was examined in stool samples from 68 patients from the Stockholm area, Sweden. Blastocystis was identified by light microscopy, and subtyped by sequencing the 5'-end of the small subunit ribosomal RNA gene. Five Blastocystis subtypes were identified in the 63 patients whose samples were successfully subtyped: ST1 (15.9%), ST2 (14.3%), ST3 (47.6%), ST4 (20.6%), and ST7 (1.6%). ST3 was more common in males compared to females (P=0.049). Comparative molecular analysis of Blastocystis sequences revealed intra-subtype variations within the identified subtypes with the exception of ST4. Among ST4 sequences in this study, as well as in the majority of human GenBank sequences, a limited genetic diversity was found compared to what was found among the other common subtypes (ST1, ST2 and ST3). The relative prevalence of ST4 in this study was comparable to the overall distribution of ST4 in European cohorts (16.5%). This contrasts with the sparse reports of ST4 in studies from other continents, which may indicate that the distribution of this subtype is geographically heterogeneous.
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ABSTRACT: Blastocystis sp. are among the most commonly observed intestinal parasites in routine clinical parasitology. Blastocystis in humans consists of at least 9 genetic subtypes. Different subtypes of Blastocystis may be associated with differences in pathogenicity and symptomatology. Advanced microscopy on two samples and sequence-confirmed PCR on a third sample from the same individual were used for Blastocystis diagnosis and subtype analyses on routine clinical samples in a university hospital. With a combined gold standard of sequence-confirmed PCR and positive advanced microscopy, 107 out of 442 (24.2 %) patients were diagnosed with Blastocystis. infection, which is a high frequency of detection in comparison to previous reports from industrialized countries. The sensitivity of microscopy and sequence-confirmed PCR was 99.1 % (106/107) and 96.3 % (103/107), respectively.Among 103 typable samples, subtype 3 was most abundant (n = 43, 42%), followed by subtypes 1 and 2 (both n = 23, 22%), subtype 4 (n = 12, 12%), and single samples with subtypes 6 (1%) and subtype 7 (1%). The prevalence of Blastocystis infection was 38% in patients from the Department of Tropical Medicine and 18% in patients from other departments. A high prevalence of Blastocystis infection was found with both advanced microscopy and sequence-confirmed PCR in our patient population. Most cases were caused by subtypes ST1, ST2, ST3 and ST4. A significantly higher prevalence was found among patients with a history of recent travel to tropical countries.BMC Infectious Diseases 08/2013; 13(1):389. · 3.03 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: This article reports long term infection and treatment failure in 18 symptomatic individuals infected with Blastocystis spp. Patients were initially treated with either metronidazole, iodoquinol or triple combination therapy consisting of nitazoxanide, furazolidone and secnidazole. Following treatment, resolution of clinical symptoms did not occur and follow up testing revealed ongoing infection with the same subtype. Patients then underwent secondary treatment with a variety of antimicrobial agents but remained symptomatic with Blastocystis spp. still present in faeces. Sequencing of the SSU rDNA was completed on all isolates and four subtypes were identified in this group- ST1, ST3, ST4 and ST5. This study highlights the lack of efficacy of several commonly used antimicrobial regiments in the treatment of Blastocystis and the chronic nature of some infections. It also demonstrates the need for further research into treatment options for Blastocystis infection.Journal of Medical Microbiology 11/2013; · 2.30 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Blastocystis sp. is currently the most common intestinal protist found in human feces and considered an emerging parasite with a worldwide distribution. Because of its potential impact in public health, we reinforced the picture of Blastocystis sp. prevalence and molecular subtype distribution in Africa by performing the first survey of this parasite in Senegal. Stool samples from 93 symptomatic presenting with various gastrointestinal disorders or asymptomatic children living in three villages of the Senegal River Basin were tested for the presence of Blastocystis sp. by non-quantitative and quantitative PCR using primer pairs targeting the SSU rDNA gene. Positive samples were subtyped to investigate the frequency of Blastocystis sp. subtypes in our cohort and the distribution of subtypes in the symptomatic and asymptomatic groups of children. By the use of molecular tools, all 93 samples were found to be positive for Blastocystis sp. indicating a striking parasite prevalence of 100%. Mixed infections by two or three subtypes were identified in eight individuals. Among a total of 103 subtyped isolates, subtype 3 was most abundant (49.5%) followed by subtype 1 (28.2%), subtype 2 (20.4%) and subtype 4 (1.9%). Subtype 3 was dominant in the symptomatic group while subtypes 1 and 2 were detected with equal frequency in both symptomatic and asymptomatic groups. The distribution of subtypes was compared with those available in other African countries and worldwide. Comparison confirmed that subtype 4 is much less frequently detected or absent in Africa while it is commonly found in Europe. Potential sources of Blastocystis sp. infection including human-to-human, zoonotic, and waterborne transmissions were also discussed. The prevalence of Blastocystis sp. in our Senegalese population was the highest prevalence ever recovered worldwide for this parasite by reaching 100%. All cases were caused by subtypes 1, 2, 3 and 4 with a predominance of subtype 3. More than half of the children infected by Blastocystis sp. presented various gastrointestinal disorders. Such high prevalence of blastocystosis in developing countries makes its control a real challenge for public health authorities.BMC Infectious Diseases 03/2014; 14(1):164. · 3.03 Impact Factor