Molecular characterization of Cryptosporidium species at the wildlife/livestock interface of the Kruger National Park, South Africa

Epidemiology Section, Department of Production Animal Studies, University of Pretoria, Private Bag X04, Onderstepoort 0110, South Africa. Electronic address: .
Comparative immunology, microbiology and infectious diseases (Impact Factor: 2.02). 09/2012; 36(3). DOI: 10.1016/j.cimid.2012.07.004
Source: PubMed


Molecular characterization of Cryptosporidium spp. was done on isolates from African elephant (Loxodonta africana), African buffalo (Syncerus caffer), impala (Aepyceros melampus) and native domestic calves collected during May and June 2008 at the wildlife/livestock interface of the Kruger National Park (KNP), South Africa. A polymerase chain reaction (PCR) restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis of the 18S rRNA gene was used in feces from 51 calves (3-12 months of age), 71 buffalo, 71 impala and 72 elephant, and sequencing of the 18S rRNA gene was done on PCR-RFLP-positive wildlife samples. Cryptosporidium spp. were detected in 8% (4/51) of the calves and identified as C. andersoni (2/4) and C. bovis (2/4). Four of the 214 wildlife samples were positive for Cryptosporidium with a prevalence of 2.8% each in impala and buffalo. Cryptosporidium ubiquitum was detected in two impala and one buffalo, and C. bovis in one buffalo. A concurrent questionnaire conducted among 120 farmers in the study area investigated contacts between wildlife species and livestock. Buffalo and impala had the highest probability of contact with cattle outside the KNP. Despite the fairly low prevalence found in wildlife and cattle, the circulation of zoonotic Cryptosporidium spp., such as C. ubiquitum, should be investigated further, particularly in areas of high HIV infection prevalence. Further studies should target younger animals in which the prevalence is likely to be higher.

Download full-text


Available from: Ferran Jori,
1 Follower
41 Reads
  • Source
    • "In the present study we detected only one C. bovis isolate originating from a habituated gorilla. Cryptosporidium bovis is considered to have adapted itself to domestic ruminants (cattle and sheep) [76], [77] or African buffalos [78] and no transmission between specific host and primates has been reported to date [79], however, it is possible that under certain conditions this host-specific Cryptosporidium can be transmitted between species [80], [81]. Although we did not find C. bovis in domestic or wild ruminants in the DSPA, we still suggest that cross-transmission of Cryptosporidium is more likely to occur among gorillas and wild ruminants in the DSPA in case that livestock do not enter or approach the Park. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Infectious diseases pose one of the greatest threats to endangered species, and a risk of gastrointestinal parasite transmission from humans to wildlife has always been considered as a major concern of tourism. Increased anthropogenic impact on primate populations may result in general changes in communities of their parasites, and also in a direct exchange of parasites between humans and primates. To evaluate the impact of close contact with humans on the occurrence of potentially zoonotic protists in great apes, we conducted a long-term monitoring of microsporidia, Cryptosporidium and Giardia infections in western lowland gorillas at different stages of the habituation process, humans, and other wildlife in Dzanga-Sangha Protected Areas in the Central African Republic. We detected Encephalitozoon cuniculi genotypes I and II (7.5%), Enterocytozoon bieneusi genotype D and three novel genotypes (gorilla 1-3) (4.0%), Giardia intestinalis subgroup A II (2.0%) and Cryptosporidium bovis (0.5%) in gorillas, whereas in humans we found only G. intestinalis subgroup A II (2.1%). In other wild and domestic animals we recorded E. cuniculi genotypes I and II (2.1%), G. intestinalis assemblage E (0.5%) and C. muris TS03 (0.5%). Due to the non-specificity of E. cuniculi genotypes we conclude that detection of the exact source of E. cuniculi infection is problematic. As Giardia intestinalis was recorded primarily in gorilla groups with closer human contact, we suggest that human-gorilla transmission has occurred. We call attention to a potentially negative impact of habituation on selected pathogens which might occur as a result of the more frequent presence of humans in the vicinity of both gorillas under habituation and habituated gorillas, rather than as a consequence of the close contact with humans, which might be a more traditional assumption. We encourage to observe the sections concerning hygiene from the IUCN best practice guidelines for all sites where increased human-gorilla contact occurs.
    PLoS ONE 08/2013; 8(8):e71840. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0071840 · 3.23 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The One Health approach, which recognizes the interconnectedness of human, animal and ecosystem health, encourages collaboration between diverse disciplines to address complex health problems. The advantages and challenges posed by these interdisciplinary collaborations are described in this review. Learning networks where diverse participants can openly share processes, best practices, and case studies are discussed as a strategy for conducting transdisciplinary One Health research and tackling complex global health problems. The 11 papers in this special issue are also introduced as they illustrate how a One Health approach can be applied to better understand and control zoonotic pathogens, engage community stakeholders in One Health research and utilize wildlife species, most notably sea otters and birds, as sentinels of ecosystem health. Collaboration is rarely without complications; however, drawing on these insights may benefit the process of operationalizing the One Health approach to address today's global health challenges.
    Comparative immunology, microbiology and infectious diseases 05/2013; 36(3). DOI:10.1016/j.cimid.2013.03.006 · 2.02 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The aim of the present study was to identify the species and/or genotypes of Cryptosporidium and Giardia duodenalis infecting roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) in Galicia (NW Spain). The presence of both enteropathogens was investigated in 212 faecal samples from roe deer shot in diverse game preserves in three different areas of Galicia. The samples were analyzed by immunofluorescence microscopy and PCR amplification, and fragments of the 18S SSU rRNA gene of Cryptosporidium and the β-giardin gene of G. duodenalis were sequenced. In total, 9 samples (4.2%) were positive for Cryptosporidium and 19 samples (8.9%) for G. duodenalis. These samples tested positive with both techniques. However, gene sequencing was only possible for Cryptosporidium in 6 of the samples and for G. duodenalis in 7 of the samples. Cryptosporidium bovis was identified in 3 samples and C. ryanae oocysts were detected in another 3 samples. Sequencing of the amplicons identified G. duodenalis sub-assemblage A-II in 7 samples. Both Cryptosporidium and G. duodenalis infections were more prevalent in juvenile than in adult animals, although the differences were not significant. G. duodenalis was more prevalent than Cryptosporidium in both age groups, although again the differences were not statistically significant. The mean intensity of infection by Cryptosporidium and G. duodenalis was similar in both age groups and ranged between 5 and 225oocysts/g and 5 and 320cysts/g of faeces, respectively. This study represents the first molecular characterization of these parasites in Spanish roe deer. Identification of C. bovis and G. duodenalis sub-assemblage A-II indicates that zoonotic transmission of these enteropathogens between roe deer and humans is possible and that cross transmission of some Cryptosporidium species and G. duodenalis (sub-assemblage A-II) may occur between related animal species sharing the same habitats.
    Veterinary Parasitology 07/2013; 197(3-4). DOI:10.1016/j.vetpar.2013.07.002 · 2.46 Impact Factor
Show more