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J Infect Dis. 2016 May 15;213(10):1579-85. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jiv772. Epub 2015 Dec 27.

Role of the Gut Microbiota of Children in Diarrhea Due to the Protozoan Parasite Entamoeba histolytica.

Author information

1
Department of Medicine.
2
International Centre for Diarrhoeal Diseases Research, Dhaka, Bangladesh.
3
Division of Biostatistics, Department of Public Health Sciences School of Medicine, University of Virginia, Charlottesville.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

An estimated 1 million children die each year before their fifth birthday from diarrhea. Previous population-based surveys of pediatric diarrheal diseases have identified the protozoan parasite Entamoeba histolytica, the etiological agent of amebiasis, as one of the causes of moderate-to-severe diarrhea in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.

METHODS:

We prospectively studied the natural history of E. histolytica colonization and diarrhea among infants in an urban slum of Dhaka, Bangladesh.

RESULTS:

Approximately 80% of children were infected with E. histolytica by the age of 2 years. Fecal anti-galactose/N-acetylgalactosamine lectin immunoglobulin A was associated with protection from reinfection, while a high parasite burden and expansion of the Prevotella copri level was associated with diarrhea.

CONCLUSIONS:

E. histolytica infection was prevalent in this population, with most infections asymptomatic and diarrhea associated with both the amount of parasite and the composition of the microbiota.

KEYWORDS:

Entamoeba histolytica; IgA; Prevotella copri; amebiasis; environmental enteropathy

PMID:
26712950
PMCID:
PMC4837909
DOI:
10.1093/infdis/jiv772
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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