PCR-based subtyping of Blastocystis isolates from symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals in a major hospital in Ankara, Turkey

Parasitol Res. 2009 Dec;106(1):263-8. doi: 10.1007/s00436-009-1658-8. Epub 2009 Oct 22.


The stool samples obtained from 94 patients with gastrointestinal symptoms and 109 asymptomatic individuals, who checked in due to other reasons, admitted at a major hospital in Ankara, Turkey were examined with native Lugol's iodine, trichrome, and Kinyoun's acid-fast stainings for parasitology examinations and with in vitro culture method for detection of Blastocystis. In a total of 203 stool samples tested, native Lugol's iodine and trichrome stainings could detect 12 (5.9%) and 20 (9.9%) positive samples for Blastocystis, respectively. Conversely, culture method could detect 66 (32.5%) positive samples, and this method was more sensitive compared to the both microscopic examinations (p < 0.001). Among 66 positive samples for Blastocystis, 27 were from symptomatic patients and 39 were from asymptomatic group. Subtypes (STs) were determined by PCR using seven different sequence-tagged site primers. ST3 was the most dominant in both symptomatic and asymptomatic groups and followed by ST1 or ST2. There were mixed infections with STs 1 and 2 or STs 1 and 3 in nine isolates. There was no statistical significance of the distribution of Blastocystis sp. subtypes between symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals (p > 0.05).

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Animals
  • Blastocystis / classification*
  • Blastocystis / genetics
  • Blastocystis / isolation & purification*
  • Blastocystis Infections / parasitology*
  • Comorbidity
  • DNA Fingerprinting / methods*
  • DNA Primers / genetics
  • Expressed Sequence Tags
  • Feces / parasitology
  • Female
  • Hospitals
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Microscopy / methods
  • Parasitology / methods*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction / methods*
  • Staining and Labeling / methods
  • Turkey


  • DNA Primers