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Cryptosporidium spp. parasitize exotic birds that are commercialized in markets, commercial aviaries, and pet shops

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to genetically characterize and phylogenetically analyze the Cryptosporidium spp. isolated from exotic birds commercialized in popular markets, commercial aviaries, and pet shops located in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Fecal samples from individually housed birds were collected and subjected to centrifuge–flotation technique using saturated sugar solution. DNA was isolated from Cryptosporidium positive samples, and 18S subunit rDNA was amplified and processed using nested-polymerase chain reaction (PCR). To identify the protozoan species, the PCR amplicons were used for restriction fragment length polymorphism and sequencing analyses. Of the 103 analyzed fecal samples, seven (6.8%) were positive for Cryptosporidium oocysts. Sequencing and further phylogenetic analyses allowed us to identify the following species: Cryptosporidium parvum in Bengalese finch (Lonchura striata domestica) and avian genotype III in Java sparrow (Padda oryzivora) and cockatiel (Nymphicus hollandicus). The sequences of the Cryptosporidium spp. isolated from canaries (Serinus canarius) were not identifiable within the groups of known species, but they presented a higher genetic similarity with C. parvum. This is the first report in Brazil showing that C. parvum parasitizes Bengalese finches and that avian genotype III parasitizes Java sparrows.

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Acknowledgments

We thank the Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq) and the Fundação de Amparo a Pesquisa do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (FAPERJ).

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Correspondence to Teresa Cristina Bergamo do Bomfim.

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Gomes, R.S., Huber, F., da Silva, S. et al. Cryptosporidium spp. parasitize exotic birds that are commercialized in markets, commercial aviaries, and pet shops. Parasitol Res 110, 1363–1370 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00436-011-2636-5

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s00436-011-2636-5

Keywords

  • Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphism Analysis
  • Cryptosporidiosis
  • Cryptosporidium Oocyst
  • Cryptosporidium Species
  • Bengalese Finch