Parasitology Research

, Volume 101, Issue 2, pp 391–396 | Cite as

Prevalence and molecular characteristics of Enterocytozoon bieneusi in cattle in Korea

  • John Hwa LeeEmail author
Original Paper


Enterocytozoon bieneusi is the most common microsporidium associated with AIDS patients. Moreover, its detection in increasing numbers of immunocompetent patients has made it an emerging pathogen. This organism was also identified in a wide range of animals, and the zoonotic potential of human infections is of particular interest. In this study, 538 fecal samples from cattle in Korea were analyzed for the presence of E. bieneusi by PCR. Approximately 15% were found to be positive, with higher rates being detected over the summer months. The internal transcribed spacer (ITS) regions of the rRNA gene of ten E. bieneusi positive samples were amplified using nested PCR and sequenced. Genetic polymorphisms, which were represented by six distinct genotypes (CEbA–CEbF), were found among the E. bieneusi isolates. Five isolates from this study had identical ribosomal ITS to the previously known E. bieneusi genotype ITSs in cattle and other animals. Four isolates were previously unreported but were quite similar to the previously known genotypes of E. bieneusi from cattle and other animals. One isolate was identical to the human E. bieneusi type D, which indicated some E. bieneusi isolates from cattle in the country may be of public health importance. To the best of my knowledge, this is the first report of E. bieneusi study in cattle in Asia.


Enterocytozoon bieneusi Prevalence Genetic analysis Cattle 



This study was supported by grant no. RTI05-03-02 from the Regional Technology Innovation Program of the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy (MOCIE), and by the Brain Korea 21 Project in Republic of Korea. The author wish to thank the technical staff and volunteer students in College of Veterinary Medicine, Chonbuk National University for technical supports and collection of samples.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of Veterinary Medicine and Bio-Safety Research InstituteChonbuk National UniversityJeonjuRepublic of Korea

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