Acta Parasitologica

, Volume 58, Issue 2, pp 185–190 | Cite as

Differential detection of Entamoeba histolytica, Entamoeba dispar and Entamoeba moshkovskii in fecal samples by nested PCR in the United Arab Emirates (UAE)

  • Ali ElBakri
  • Amidou Samie
  • Sinda Ezzedine
  • Raed Abu Odeh


Amoebiasis is one of the most important infectious diseases afflicting mainly tropical and subtropical countries. This study was carried out in the Sharjah Emirate, UAE in order to accurately detect and differentiate Entamoeba histolytica, Entamoeba dispar and E. moshkovskii in fecal samples collected from the Sharjah municipality public health clinic by ELISA and nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR). One hundred and twenty specimens were examined and the PCR was positive for E. histolytica, E. dispar and E. moshkovskii (collectively referred to as Entamoeba complex) in 19.2% (23 out of 120). Of those, 10% (12/120) were mono — infection with E. histolytica; 2.5% (3/120) with E. dispar; and 2.5% (3/120) E. moshkovskii. The nested PCR also detected mixed infections by both E. histolytica and E. dispar in 3.3% (4/120) and E. dispar and E. moshkovskii in 0.8% (1/120). The TechLab ELISA kit failed to detect E. histolytica in any of the E. histolytica PCR positive samples. Overall, the percentage of E. histolytica including those found in mixed infections was 13.3% (16/120). Compared to nested PCR, microscopy was found to have an overall sensitivity of 52.2% and a specificity of 75.2% for detection of Entamoeba complex. The present study indicates that E. histolytica is present in the UAE with an average incidence rate of 13.3%. However, larger studies need to be conducted in order to confirm these findings. We propose the use of PCR in both the routine diagnosis of amoebiasis and epidemiological survey in the UAE.


Diarrhea Entamoeba epidemiology Sharjah 


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Copyright information

© Versita Warsaw and Springer-Verlag Wien 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ali ElBakri
    • 1
  • Amidou Samie
    • 2
  • Sinda Ezzedine
    • 1
  • Raed Abu Odeh
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Medical Laboratory Technology, College of Health SciencesUniversity of SharjahSharjahUAE
  2. 2.Department of MicrobiologyUniversity of VendaThohoyandouSouth Africa

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