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J Clin Microbiol. 2007 Oct;45(10):3286-94. Epub 2007 Aug 8.

Multilocus analysis of Cryptosporidium hominis and Cryptosporidium parvum isolates from sporadic and outbreak-related human cases and C. parvum isolates from sporadic livestock cases in the United Kingdom.

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  • 1Health Protection Agency, Centre for Infections, 61 Colindale Avenue, London NW9 5HT, United Kingdom.


Cryptosporidium parvum and Cryptosporidium hominis isolates from sporadic, drinking water-associated, and intrafamilial human cases together with C. parvum isolates from sporadic cases in livestock were collected in the United Kingdom between 1995 and 1999. The isolates were characterized by analysis of three microsatellite markers (ML1, GP15, and MS5) using PCR amplification. Within C. hominis, four alleles were detected within the GP15 and MS5 loci, and a single type was detected with ML1. C. parvum was more polymorphic; 12 alleles were detected with GP15, 6 were detected with MS5, and 3 were detected with ML1. Multilocus analysis of polymorphisms within the three microsatellite loci was combined with those reported previously for an extrachromosomal small double-stranded RNA. Forty multilocus types were detected within these two species: 9 were detected in C. hominis, and 31 were detected in C. parvum. In C. hominis, heterogeneity was almost exclusively found in samples from sporadic cases. Similarity analysis identified three main groups within C. parvum, and the group that predominated in human infection was also found in livestock. Multilocus types of C. parvum previously identified only in humans were not detected in livestock. Isolates of both C. hominis and C. parvum from separate waterborne outbreaks were genetically homogeneous, suggesting preferential or point source transmission of certain types of these two species of parasites.

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