A comparison of isozymes of five axenic Giardia isolates

J Parasitol. 1983 Oct;69(5):793-801.


The relative mobilities of six enzymes from the trophozoites of five axenically-cultured isolates of Giardia from human, cat, and guinea pig hosts were compared by starch and polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The six enzymes compared were malate dehydrogenase (NAD+) (MDH) (EC, malate dehydrogenase (decarboxylating) (ME) (EC, hexokinase (EC, 6-phosphogluconate dehydrogenase (EC, glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6P) (EC, and alpha-glycerophosphate dehydrogenase (EC The latter three enzymes have not been previously reported in Giardia. On the basis of zymogram patterns, the five Giardia isolates were divided into three zymodemes. Zymodeme I comprised human-1/England, human-1/Bethesda, and cat-1/Portland, Zymodeme II the guinea pig-1/Portland isolate, and Zymodeme III the human-1/Portland isolate. These zymodemes were further substantiated when several physical and kinetic properties of three of the enzymes, MDH, ME, and G6P, were examined. Our results, in which Giardia isolated from different mammalian hosts share multiple isoenzymes, question the validity of the practice of assigning Giardia species names on the basis of the animal host from which the protozoan was obtained.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cats / parasitology
  • Electrophoresis, Starch Gel
  • Giardia / classification
  • Giardia / enzymology*
  • Giardia / isolation & purification
  • Glucosephosphate Dehydrogenase / analysis
  • Glycerolphosphate Dehydrogenase / analysis
  • Guinea Pigs / parasitology
  • Hexokinase / analysis
  • Humans
  • Isoelectric Point
  • Isoenzymes / analysis*
  • Isoenzymes / metabolism
  • Kinetics
  • Malate Dehydrogenase / analysis
  • Molecular Weight
  • Phosphogluconate Dehydrogenase / analysis


  • Isoenzymes
  • Glycerolphosphate Dehydrogenase
  • Malate Dehydrogenase
  • Phosphogluconate Dehydrogenase
  • Glucosephosphate Dehydrogenase
  • Hexokinase