Genetic analysis of Blastocystis hominis isolated from symptomatic and asymptomatic human hosts in Egypt

J Egypt Soc Parasitol. 2009 Apr;39(1):99-109.


Extensive genomic polymorphism was demonstrated among morphologically identical B. hominis isolates. A genetic diversity would be a powerful tool for identification or classification of B. hominis subtypes. In this study, 14 Egyptian B. hominis isolates were collected, 5 of them were isolated from asymptomatic people whose infections were detected during routine medical check-up and 9 were isolated from patients with gastrointestinal symptoms. Restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis of PCR amplified small-subunit rDNA (SSU rDNA) was used to study genetic diversity of B. hominis isolates by 3 different restriction enzymes (Hin-fI, RsaI & Sau3AI). Cluster analysis of the riboprint patterns showed 7 distinct genotypes out of 14 B. hominis isolates, 4 were previously reported riboprints and 3 were new ones. The frequency of intestinal symptoms was 64% in Blastocystis cases. Abdominal pain was the most frequent symptom 78% (7/9). There was no definite correlation between RFLP-banding pattern or genetically distinct genotypes and pathogenecity.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Animals
  • Blastocystis Infections / epidemiology
  • Blastocystis Infections / parasitology*
  • Blastocystis hominis / genetics*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Egypt / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Genetic Variation
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Phylogeny
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Polymorphism, Restriction Fragment Length