Research, Connect, Protect



Identification of zoonotic Giar­dia genotypes in marsupials in Australia

Jacqui Thompson

Rongchang Yang

Michelle Power

Jasmin Hufschmid

Ian Beveridge

Simon Reid

Josephine Ng

Anthony Armson

Una Ryan

Divisio­n o­f Ve­te­r­inar­y and Bio­me­dical­ Scie­nce­s, Mu­r­do­ch Unive­r­sity, Mu­r­do­ch Dr­ive­, Pe­r­th, Mu­r­do­ch, WA 6150, Au­str­al­ia  De­par­tme­nt o­f Bio­l­o­g­ical­ Scie­nce­s, Macqu­ar­ie­ Unive­r­sity, No­r­th Ryde­, Sydne­y, NSW 2109, Au­str­al­ia Facu­l­ty o­f Ve­te­r­inar­y Scie­nce­, Unive­r­sity o­f Me­l­b­o­u­r­ne­, We­r­r­ib­e­e­, Vic. 3030, Au­str­al­ia, Divisio­n o­f He­al­th Scie­nce­s, Scho­o­l­ o­f Nu­r­sing­, Mu­r­do­ch Unive­r­sity, Mu­r­do­ch, WA 6150, Au­str­al­ia



 A total of 421 fecal samples from a variety of captive and wild marsupial hosts in Western Australia, Victoria and South Australia were screened for the presence of Giar­dia species/genotypes using PCR and sequence analysis of a fragment of the 18S rRNA gene. Giar­dia spp. were identified in 13.4% (28/209) of samples from captive marsupials and 13.7% (29/212) of samples from wild marsupials. Sequence analysis at the 18S locus identified the zoonotic Giar­dia du­o­de­nal­is Genotypes A and B in both captive and wild marsupials. Eight isolates were typed as genotype B3 and B4 at the g­dh locus, although 7/8 were typed as genotype A at the 18S rRNA locus. The possible reasons for this discordance are discussed. This is the first report of genotype B and only the second report of genotype A in marsupials. As some of the genotype B isolates were identical to human-derived Giar­dia g­dh sequences, these results suggest that marsupials in catchments may pose a public health risk and therefore warrant further investigation.