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J Appl Microbiol. 2005;98(4):889-95.

Detection of Helicobacter pylori DNA in human faeces and water with different levels of faecal pollution in the north-east of Spain.

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1
Departament de Microbiologia, Universitat de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain.

Abstract

AIMS:

To assess the role of water in the faecal transmission of Helicobacter pylori by detecting the DNA of this pathogen in human faecal samples and environmental water samples with a range of faecal pollution from the north-east of Spain.

METHODS AND RESULTS:

Semi-nested PCR was used to detect H. pylori in stools and water, both matrices with a complex biota. DNA was detected using highly specific primers of an ureA gene fragment. In addition, antigens were used to detect the bacteria in stools. Helicobacter pylori was detected in 33% of 36 human faecal samples and in 66% of wastewater samples, and 11% of river samples, but in none of the spring waters samples. Faecal pollution of the aquatic environment was tested analysing the presence of microbial indicators.

CONCLUSIONS:

We report the presence of H. pylori DNA in stools and in aquatic environments with different levels of faecal pollution, from the north-east of Spain. In this study a higher number of positive results were obtained in the more faecally polluted waters.

SIGNIFICANCE AND IMPACT OF THE STUDY:

These data indicate that water may be a vector of H. pylori in its faecal-oral route.

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