Cryptosporidium scrofarum n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporidiidae) in domestic pigs (Sus scrofa).
ABSTRACT: We describe the morphological, biological, and molecular characteristics of Cryptosporidium pig genotype II and propose the species name Cryptosporidium scrofarum n. sp. to reflect its prevalence in adult pigs worldwide. Oocysts of C. scrofarum are morphologically indistinguishable from C. parvum, measuring 4.81-5.96 ?m (mean=5.16)×4.23-5.29 ?m (mean=4.83) with a length to width ratio of 1.07±0.06 (n=400). Oocysts of C. scrofarum obtained from a naturally infected pig were infectious for 8-week-old pigs but not 4-week-old pigs. The prepatent period in 8-week-old Cryptosporidium-naive pigs was 4-6 days and the patent period was longer than 30 days. The infection intensity of C. scrofarum in pigs was generally low, in the range 250-4000 oocysts per gram of feces. Infected pigs showed no clinical signs of cryptosporidiosis and no pathology was detected. Cryptosporidium scrofarum was not infectious for adult SCID mice, adult BALB/c mice, Mongolian gerbils (Meriones unguiculatus), southern multimammate mice (Mastomys coucha), yellow-necked mice (Apodemus flavicollis), or guinea pigs (Cavia porcellus). Phylogenetic analyses based on small subunit rRNA, actin, and heat shock protein 70 gene sequences revealed that C. scrofarum is genetically distinct from all known Cryptosporidium species.
Project description:The morphological, biological, and molecular characteristics of Cryptosporidium avian genotype V are described, and the species name Cryptosporidium avium is proposed to reflect its specificity for birds under natural and experimental conditions. Oocysts of C. avium measured 5.30-6.90 ?m (mean?=?6.26 ?m)?×?4.30-5.50 ?m (mean?=?4.86 ?m) with a length to width ratio of 1.29 (1.14-1.47). Oocysts of C. avium obtained from four naturally infected red-crowned parakeets (Cyanoramphus novaezealandiae) were infectious for 6-month-old budgerigars (Melopsittacus undulatus) and hens (Gallus gallus f. domestica). The prepatent periods in both susceptible bird species was 11 days postinfection (DPI). The infection intensity of C. avium in budgerigars and hens was low, with a maximum intensity of 5000 oocysts per gram of feces. Oocysts of C. avium were microscopically detected at only 12-16 DPI in hens and 12 DPI in budgerigars, while PCR analyses revealed the presence of specific DNA in fecal samples from 11 to 30 DPI (the conclusion of the experiment). Cryptosporidium avium was not infectious for 8-week-old SCID and BALB/c mice (Mus musculus). Naturally or experimentally infected birds showed no clinical signs of cryptosporidiosis, and no pathology was detected. Developmental stages of C. avium were detected in the ileum and cecum using scanning electron microscopy. Phylogenetic analyses based on small subunit rRNA, actin, and heat shock protein 70 gene sequences revealed that C. avium is genetically distinct from previously described Cryptosporidium species.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Cryptosporidium is a genus of apicomplexan parasites that cause enteric disease in vertebrates. In pigs, infections are most often asymptomatic, but may result in diarrhoea and poor growth. The most common species detected in pigs are C. suis and C. scrofarum with low zoonotic potential. C. parvum, with higher zoonotic potential, may also be found. As previous knowledge on the occurrence of Cryptosporidium in Swedish pigs is scarce, this was investigated in our study. Faecal samples from 13 pig herds were collected and a total of 222 pooled pen samples, from suckling piglets (n?=?48), growers, aged 6-12 weeks (n?=?57), fatteners, aged 13-24 weeks (n?=?67) and adult animals (n?=?50) were included. Samples were analysed using microscopy and positive samples were further analysed using polymerase chain reaction and sequencing of the 18S rRNA gene and the 28S rRNA gene to determine species. RESULTS:Cryptosporidium spp. were detected in all sampled herds and in 25% (56/222) of the individual pen samples. Infections were most common in growers and fatteners with 51% (29/57) and 35% (20/67) positive samples in each group, respectively. The piglets had 8% (4/48) positive samples and adults had 6% (3/50). Species determination showed C. suis and C. scrofarum in piglets and growers, C. scrofarum in the fatteners, and C. suis and C. parvum in the adults. Although no mixed infections could be confirmed we saw signs of double peaks in the 28S rRNA gene chromatograms, possibly indicating more than one species present per sample. CONCLUSION:Cryptosporidium spp. were detected on every sampled farm and in 25% of the individual pen samples in our study. We therefore conclude that Cryptosporidium spp. are present and likely common in Swedish pig herds, where pigs are loose and reared on solid floors. However, none of the farms reported any problems with poor weight gain, diarrhoea, or reduced appetite in their pig herds. The pig adapted C. suis and C. scrofarum were the predominant species identified. Two samples were positive for the more zoonotic C. parvum, and pigs should hence not be disregarded as a possible source of zoonotic cryptosporidiosis.
Project description:Cryptosporidium spp., ubiquitous enteric parasitic protozoa of vertebrates, recently emerged as an important cause of economic loss and zoonosis. The present study aimed to determine the distribution and species of Cryptosporidium in post-weaned and adult pigs in Shaanxi province, northwestern China. A total of 1,337 fresh fecal samples of post-weaned and adult pigs were collected by sterile disposable gloves from 8 areas of Shaanxi province. The samples were examined by Sheather's sugar flotation technique and microscopy at × 400 magnification for Cryptosporidium infection, and the species in positive samples was further identified by PCR amplification of the small subunit (SSU) rRNA gene. A total of 44 fecal samples were successfully amplified by the nested PCR of the partial SSU rRNA, with overall prevalence of 3.3%. The average prevalence of Cryptosporidium infection in each pig farms ranged from 0 to 14.4%. Species identification by sequencing of SSU rRNA gene revealed that 42 (3.1%) samples were Cryptosporidium suis and 2 (0.15%) were Cryptosporidium scrofarum. C. suis had the highest prevalence (7.5%) in growers and the lowest in breeding pigs (0.97%). C. suis was the predominant species in pre-weaned and adult pigs, while C. scrofarum infected pigs older than 3 months only. A season-related difference of C. suis was observed in this study, with the highest prevalence in autumn (5.5%) and the lowest (1.7%) in winter. The present study provided basic information for control of Cryptosporidium infection in pigs and assessment of zoonotic transmission of pigs in Shaanxi province, China.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Cryptosporidium spp. are important zoonotic pathogens infecting a wide range of vertebrate hosts, and causing moderate to severe diarrhea in humans. Cryptosporidium infections are frequently reported in humans and animals worldwide, but little research has been done on local pig breeds such as Tibetan pigs and Yunan Black pigs and imported pig breeds such as Landrace pigs in China. Therefore, a total of 1089 pig fecal samples from four intensive farms in four areas of China, including Tibetan pigs from Gongbujiangda County (n = 180) and Mainling County (n = 434), Tibet, Yunan Black pigs from Sanmenxia, Henan Province (n = 246), and Landrace pigs from Kaifeng, Henan Province (n = 229), and were screened for the presence of Cryptosporidium with microscopy and nested PCR amplification of the small subunit rRNA gene. RESULTS:The total infection rate of Cryptosporidium in 1089 fecal samples of three different pig breeds was 2.11% (23/1089), and the infection rates of Tibetan pigs, Yunan Black pigs, and Landrace pigs were 0.49% (3/614), 0.41% (1/246), and 8.30% (19/229), respectively. The prevalence of Cryptosporidium infection was significantly higher in weaned piglets (1-2 months) (4.36%, 21/482) than in younger and older age groups (p < 0.01). Sequence analysis of positive samples revealed that there was no mixed infection in our study population, which included 12 cases of C. suis mono-infections (52.17%, 12/23) and 11 cases of C. scrofarum mono-infections (47.83%, 11/23). C. suis was identified in one pre-weaned piglet (< 1 month) and 11 weaned piglets (1-2 months), while C. scrofarum was only detected in 10 weaned piglets (1-2 months) and one finished pig (> 2 months). CONCLUSIONS:This is the first report on the identification of Cryptosporidium spp. in Tibetan pigs, and our findings also elucidate the occurrence and distribution of Cryptosporidium in three different pig breeds in Tibet and Henan, China. More molecular epidemiological studies are required to better clarify the prevalence and public health significance of Cryptosporidium in different pigs.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Cryptosporidium spp. are common intestinal protozoa of humans and animals. There have been few studies conducted on the molecular characterizations of pig-derived Cryptosporidium isolates worldwide, especially in China. Thus, the aim of the present study was to understand the prevalence, distribution and genotypes of Cryptosporidium in pigs in Heilongjiang Province, China. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: A total of 568 fecal samples from pre-weaned and post-weaned piglets were collected from eight pig farms from four areas of Heilongjiang Province. The average infection rate of Cryptosporidium was 1.6% (9/568) by microscopy. 113 samples were subjected to PCR amplification of the small subunit (SSU) rRNA gene of Cryptosporidium, with 55.8% (63/113) being positive for Cryptosporidium. Cryptosporidium suis (n = 31) and C. scrofarumn (n = 32) were identified by DNA sequencing of the SSU rRNA gene. Three types of C. scrofarumn were found at the SSU rRNA locus, with one novel type being detected. Using species/genotype-specific primers for pig-adapted Cryptosporidium spp., 22 and 23 respectively belonged to C. suis and C. scrofarum mono-infections, with 18 co-infections detected. The infection peaks for C. suis (60%, 24/40) and C. scrofarum (51.2%, 21/41) were respectively found in the piglets of 5 to 8 weeks and more than 8 weeks. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: The detection of C. suis and C. scrofarum in pre-weaned and post-weaned piglets has public health implications, due to the fact that the two species are both zoonotic Cryptosporidium. The novel C. scrofarum type detected may be endemic to China.
Project description:Previously we reported the unique Cryptosporidium sp. "c" genotype (e.g., Sbey03c, Sbey05c, Sbld05c, Sltl05c) from three species of Spermophilus ground squirrel (Spermophilus beecheyi, Spermophilus beldingi, Spermophilus lateralis) located throughout California, USA. This follow-up work characterizes the morphology and animal infectivity of this novel genotype as the final step in proposing it as a new species of Cryptosporidium. Analysis of sequences of 18S rRNA, actin, and HSP70 genes of additional Cryptosporidium isolates from recently sampled California ground squirrels (S. beecheyi) confirms the presence of the unique Sbey-c genotype in S. beecheyi. Phylogenetic and BLAST analysis indicates that the c-genotype in Spermophilus ground squirrels is distinct from Cryptosporidium species/genotypes from other host species currently available in GenBank. We propose to name this c-genotype found in Spermophilus ground squirrels as Cryptosporidium rubeyi n. sp. The mean size of C. rubeyi n. sp. oocysts is 4.67 (4.4-5.0) μm × 4.34 (4.0-5.0) μm, with a length/width index of 1.08 (n = 220). Oocysts of C. rubeyi n. sp. are not infectious to neonatal BALB/c mice and Holstein calves. GenBank accession numbers for C. rubeyi n. sp. are DQ295012, AY462233, and KM010224 for the 18S rRNA gene, KM010227 for the actin gene, and KM010229 for the HSP70 gene.
Project description:Waste lagoons of swine operations are a source of Cryptosporidium oocysts. Few studies, however, have reported on oocyst concentrations in swine waste lagoons; none have reported on oocyst viability status, nor has there been a systematic assessment of species/genotype distributions across different types of swine facilities. Ten swine waste lagoons associated with farrowing, nursery, finishing, and gestation operations were each sampled once a month for a year. Oocysts were extracted from triplicate 900-ml effluent samples, enumerated by microscopy, and assessed for viability by dye exclusion/vital stain assay. DNA was extracted from processed samples, and 18S ribosomal DNA (rDNA) genes were amplified by PCR and sequenced for species and genotype identification. Oocysts were observed at each sampling time at each lagoon. Annual mean concentrations of total oocysts and viable oocysts ranged between 24 and 51 and between 0.6 and 12 oocysts ml(-1) effluent, respectively. The species and genotype distributions were dominated (95 to 100%) by Cryptosporidium suis and Cryptosporidium pig genotype II, the latter of which was found at eight of the lagoons. The lagoon at the gestation facility was dominated by Cryptosporidium muris (90%), and one farrowing facility showed a mix of pig genotypes, Cryptosporidium muris, and various genotypes of C. parvum. The zoonotic C. parvum bovine genotype was observed five times out of 407 18S rDNA sequences analyzed. Our results indicate that pigs can have mixed Cryptosporidium infections, but infection with C. suis is likely to be dominant.
Project description:Fecal samples from wild-caught common voles (n = 328) from 16 locations in the Czech Republic were screened for Cryptosporidium by microscopy and PCR/sequencing at loci coding small-subunit rRNA, Cryptosporidium oocyst wall protein, actin and 70 kDa heat shock protein. Cryptosporidium infections were detected in 74 voles (22.6%). Rates of infection did not differ between males and females nor between juveniles and adults. Phylogenetic analysis revealed the presence of eight Cryptosporidium species/genotypes including two new species, C. alticolis and C. microti. These species from wild-caught common voles were able to infect common and meadow voles under experimental conditions, with a prepatent period of 3-5 days post-infection (DPI), but they were not infectious for various other rodents or chickens. Meadow voles lost infection earlier than common voles (11-14 vs 13-16 DPI) and had significantly lower infection intensity. Cryptosporidium alticolis infects the anterior small intestine and has larger oocysts (5.4 × 4.9 µm), whereas C. microti infects the large intestine and has smaller oocysts (4.3 × 4.1 µm). None of the rodents developed clinical signs of infection. Genetic and biological data support the establishment of C. alticolis and C. microti as separate species of the genus Cryptosporidium.
Project description:The morphological, biological, and molecular characteristics of Cryptosporidium muris strain TS03 are described, and the species name Cryptosporidium proliferans n. sp. is proposed. Cryptosporidium proliferans obtained from a naturally infected East African mole rat (Tachyoryctes splendens) in Kenya was propagated under laboratory conditions in rodents (SCID mice and southern multimammate mice, Mastomys coucha) and used in experiments to examine oocyst morphology and transmission. DNA from the propagated C. proliferans isolate, and C. proliferans DNA isolated from the feces of an African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) in Central African Republic, a donkey (Equus africanus) in Algeria, and a domestic horse (Equus caballus) in the Czech Republic were used for phylogenetic analyses. Oocysts of C. proliferans are morphologically distinguishable from C. parvum and C. muris HZ206, measuring 6.8-8.8 (mean = 7.7 ?m) × 4.8-6.2 ?m (mean = 5.3) with a length to width ratio of 1.48 (n = 100). Experimental studies using an isolate originated from T. splendens have shown that the course of C. proliferans infection in rodent hosts differs from that of C. muris and C. andersoni. The prepatent period of 18-21 days post infection (DPI) for C. proliferans in southern multimammate mice (Mastomys coucha) was similar to that of C. andersoni and longer than the 6-8 DPI prepatent period for C. muris RN66 and HZ206 in the same host. Histopatologicaly, stomach glands of southern multimammate mice infected with C. proliferans were markedly dilated and filled with necrotic material, mucus, and numerous Cryptosporidium developmental stages. Epithelial cells of infected glands were atrophic, exhibited cuboidal or squamous metaplasia, and significantly proliferated into the lumen of the stomach, forming papillary structures. The epithelial height and stomach weight were six-fold greater than in non-infected controls. Phylogenetic analyses based on small subunit rRNA, Cryptosporidium oocyst wall protein, thrombospondin-related adhesive protein of Cryptosporidium-1, heat shock protein 70, actin, heat shock protein 90 (MS2), MS1, MS3, and M16 gene sequences revealed that C. proliferans is genetically distinct from C. muris and other previously described Cryptosporidium species.
Project description:Cryptosporidium spp. were detected in 25 of 56 pig slurry samples from 33 Irish farms by PCR and DNA sequencing. The organisms detected included C. suis, Cryptosporidium pig genotype II, and C. muris. We concluded that Cryptosporidium oocysts can persist in treated slurry and potentially contaminate surface water through improper discharge or uncontrolled runoff.