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Identification of novel Cryptosporidium genotypes in kangaroos from Western Australia

Elsevier BV
Publication Date
  • Biology


A total of 763 faecal samples were collected from western grey kangaroos (Macropus fuliginosus) in Western Australia and screened for the presence of Cryptosporidium by PCR at the 18S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) locus. Samples that were positive at the 18S locus were also amplified at the actin locus. The overall prevalence was 9.3% (71/763). At the 18S rRNA locus, sequences were obtained for 28 of the 71 positives. Sequence analysis identified four species; Cryptosporidium fayeri in seven isolates, Cryptosporidium marcopodum in four isolates, Cryptosporidium xiaoi in six isolates and a novel genotype (kangaroo genotype I) in eleven isolates. Analysis at the actin locus confirmed the genetic distinctness of the novel genotype. The results of the present study indicate that in addition to C. fayeri and C. marcopodum, kangaroos may be capable of being infected with a wider range of Cryptosporidium species and genotypes including livestock species such as C. xiaoi. The novel genotype identified in the kangaroos most likely represents a cryptic species that requires further analyses to confirm its species status.

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