Molecular detection and characterization of Cryptosporidium spp. among breeding cattery cats in Japan
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Cryptosporidium spp. are pathogenic protozoan that can cause gastrointestinal illness in mammalian hosts. As a result of the close contact between humans and cats, there is concern regarding the potential zoonotic transmission of Cryptosporidium spp. from infected cats; however, few data have been reported regarding the prevalence of this pathogen among cats. Here, we report the prevalence of Cryptosporidium spp. among breeding cattery cats in Japan. A total of 286 fresh fecal samples were collected from breeding cattery cats at seven facilities located across Japan. A nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay targeting the 18S rRNA gene was employed for the detection of Cryptosporidium spp. Four cats (1.4 %), from two catteries, were positive for Cryptosporidium spp. Age and fecal condition were not significantly associated with prevalence. The four positive samples displayed 99–100 % sequence similarity to Cryptosporidium felis sequences. Our findings indicated that the prevalence of Cryptosporidium spp. was low among breeding cattery cats in Japan, and therefore the risk of zoonotic transmission to humans was also likely to be low.
KeywordsCat Breeding cattery Cryptosporidium spp.
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