Animal propagation and genomic survey of a genotype 1 isolate of Cryptosporidium parvum

Mol Biochem Parasitol. 2000 May;108(2):187-97. doi: 10.1016/s0166-6851(00)00211-5.


Human cryptosporidiosis is attributed to two major Cryptosporidium parvum genotypes of which type 1 appears to be the predominant. Most laboratory investigations however are performed using genotype 2 isolates, the only type which readily infects laboratory animals. So far type 1 has only been identified in humans and primates. A type 1 isolate, obtained from an individual with HIV and cryptosporidiosis, was successfully adapted to propagate in gnotobiotic piglets. Genotypic characterization of oocyst DNA from this isolate using multiple restriction fragment length polymorphisms, a genotype-specific PCR marker, and direct sequence analysis of two polymorphic loci confirmed that this isolate, designated NEMC1, is indeed type 1. No changes in the genetic profile were identified during multiple passages in piglets. In contrast, the time period between infection and onset of fecal oocyst shedding, an indicator of adaptation, decreased with increasing number of passages. Consistent with other type 1 isolates, NEMC1 failed to infect mice. A preliminary survey of the NEMC1 genome covering approximately 2% of the genome and encompassing 200 kb of unique sequence showed an average similarity of approximately 95% between type 1 and 2 sequences. Twenty-four percent of the NEMC1 sequences were homologous to previously determined genotype 2 C. parvum sequences. To our knowledge, this is the first successful serial propagation of genotype 1 in animals, which should facilitate characterization of the unique features of this human pathogen.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cryptosporidiosis / parasitology
  • Cryptosporidium parvum / classification
  • Cryptosporidium parvum / genetics*
  • Cryptosporidium parvum / growth & development*
  • Genome, Protozoan*
  • Genotype
  • Germ-Free Life*
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Polymorphism, Restriction Fragment Length
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • Swine / parasitology*

Associated data

  • GENBANK/AQ988770
  • GENBANK/AQ988771
  • GENBANK/AQ988772
  • GENBANK/AQ988773
  • GENBANK/AQ988774
  • GENBANK/AQ988775
  • GENBANK/AQ988776
  • GENBANK/AQ988777
  • GENBANK/AQ988778
  • GENBANK/AQ988779
  • GENBANK/AQ988780
  • GENBANK/AQ988781
  • GENBANK/AQ988782
  • GENBANK/AQ988783
  • GENBANK/AQ988784
  • GENBANK/AQ988785
  • GENBANK/AQ988786
  • GENBANK/AQ988787
  • GENBANK/AQ988788
  • GENBANK/AQ988789
  • GENBANK/AQ988790
  • GENBANK/AQ988791
  • GENBANK/AQ988792
  • GENBANK/AQ988793
  • GENBANK/AQ988794
  • GENBANK/AQ988795
  • GENBANK/AQ988796
  • GENBANK/AQ988797
  • GENBANK/AQ988798
  • GENBANK/AQ988799