Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Clin Microbiol. 2001 Jun;39(6):2126-33.

Phylogeny of Pneumocystis carinii from 18 primate species confirms host specificity and suggests coevolution.

Author information

UMR 956 INRA-AFSSA-ENVA Biologie Moléculaire et Immunologie Parasitaires et Fongiques, Ecole Nationale Vétérinaire d'Alfort, 7, Avenue du Général de Gaulle, 94704 Maisons-Alfort, France.


Primates are regularly infected by fungal organisms identified as Pneumocystis carinii. They constitute a valuable population for the confirmation of P. carinii host specificity. In this study, the presence of P. carinii was assessed by direct examination and nested PCR at mitochondrial large subunit (mtLSU) rRNA and dihydropteroate synthetase (DHPS) genes in 98 lung tissue samples from captive or wild nonhuman primates. Fifty-nine air samples corresponding to the environment of different primate species in zoological parks were also examined. Cystic forms of P. carinii were detected in smears from 7 lung tissue samples corresponding to 5 New World primate species. Amplifications at the mtLSU rRNA gene were positive for 29 lung tissue samples representing 18 different primate species or subspecies and 2 air samples corresponding to the environment of two simian colonies. Amplifications at the DHPS gene were positive for 8 lung tissue samples representing 6 different primate species. Direct sequencing of nested PCR products demonstrated that a specific mtLSU rRNA and DHPS sequence could be attributed to each primate species or subspecies. No nonhuman primate harbored the human type of P. carinii (P. carinii f. sp. hominis). Genetic divergence in primate-derived P. carinii organisms varied in terms of the phylogenetic divergence existing among the corresponding host species, suggesting coevolution.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center