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Molecular characterization of Cryptosporidium and Giardia in farmers and their ruminant livestock from the Coastal Savannah zone of Ghana

Squire, Sylvia Afriyie, Yang, Rongchang, Robertson, Ian, Ayi, Irene, Ryan, Una
Infection, genetics, and evolution 2017 v.55 pp. 236-243
Cryptosporidium parvum, Giardia, cattle, children, diarrhea, epidemiology, farmers, feces, giardin protein, glutamate dehydrogenase, glycoproteins, goats, humans, loci, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, ribosomal RNA, sequence analysis, sheep, triose-phosphate isomerase, Ghana
Cryptosporidium and Giardia are major causes of diarrhoea in developing countries including Ghana, however, nothing is known about the species and subtypes of Cryptosporidium and Giardia in farmers and their ruminant livestock in this country. A total of 925 faecal samples from humans (n=95), cattle (n=328), sheep (n=217) and goats (n=285), were screened for Cryptosporidium and Giardia by quantitative PCR (qPCR) at the 18S rRNA and glutamate dehydrogenase (gdh) loci respectively. Cryptosporidium positives were typed by sequence analysis of 18S and 60kDa glycoprotein (gp60) loci amplicons. Giardia positives were typed at the triose phosphate isomerase (tpi), beta-giardin (bg) and gdh loci. The prevalence of Cryptosporidium and Giardia by qPCR was 8.4% and 10.5% in humans, 26.5% and 8.5% in cattle, 34.1% and 12.9% in sheep, and 33.3% and 12.3% in goat faecal samples, respectively. G. duodenalis assemblages A and B were detected in humans and assemblage E was detected in livestock. Cryptosporidium parvum was the only species identified in humans; C. andersoni, C. bovis, C. ryanae and C. ubiquitum were identified in cattle; C. xiaoi, C. ubiquitum and C. bovis in sheep; and C. xiaoi, C. baileyi and C. parvum in goats. This is the first molecular study of Cryptosporidium and Giardia in livestock in Ghana. The identification of zoonotic species and the identification of C. parvum subtype IIcA5G3q in livestock, which has previously been identified in children in Ghana, suggests potential zoonotic transmission. Further studies on larger numbers of human and animal samples, and on younger livestock are required to better understand the epidemiology and transmission of Cryptosporidium and Giardia in Ghana.