Molecular Subtyping of Blastocystis from Diverse Animals in the United Arab Emirates.
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The contribution of Blastocystis from non-human hosts to zoonotic transmission is only partly known. The objective of this study was to determine the distribution of Blastocystis genetic subtypes in different animal species in United Arab Emirates. A total of 114 stool samples were tested using PCR of the small subunit (SSU) rRNA gene and sequence analysis. Twenty-three Blastocystis-positive samples were identified. The following detection rates were observed: cattle, 22.7%; sheep, 63.6%; rabbits, 33.3%; rodents, 37.5%; reptiles, 21.2%. Four subtypes were identified in this study; ST4, ST10, ST14, and ST17; ST10 was isolated from sheep and cattle, corroborating previous data indicating that these are natural hosts for this subtype. Cases of mixed subtype colonization were also detected. Conspicuously, we found ST14 in rabbits. The discovery of ST17 in a squirrel indicates a novel host for this subtype. Furthermore, the discovery of ST4 in rodents suggests that these may serve as reservoir for human Blastocystis ST4 colonization. Six tortoises and one iguana were positive for Blastocystis. In conclusion, this is the first report of Blastocystis infection in various animals in the UAE. Apart from ST4, no potentially zoonotic subtypes were detected.
- Biomedical Sciences [164 items ]