Document Type: Original Articles
Department of Parasitology and
Microbiology, School of Medicine,
Ardabil University of Medical Sciences,
Basic Sciences in Infectious Diseases
Research Center, Shiraz University of
Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran;
Department of Parasitology and
Mycology, School of Medicine, Shiraz
University of Medical Sciences,
Background: There are many genera of free-living amoeba in the environment, but members of only four genera (Naegleria, Acanthamoeba, Balamuthia and Sappinia) have an association with human infection. Water, soil and air are main sources of infective types of these pathogenic organisms for human.Methods: Totally, 30 samples were collected from the surface water sources of Shiraz city, the capital of Fars province, during July and August 2009. The samples were filtered and their sediments were cultured on non-nutrient agar medium and seeded with non-pathogen Escherichia coli. Then, they were incubated at three different temperatures, 22˚C, 37˚C, and 44˚C. The media were checked with invert microscopy and amoebae were recognized by phase–contrast microscopy and observed by light microscopy after Trichrome staining. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was performed for molecular detection.Results: Of the 30 samples, 29 were recognized morphologically as Acanthamoeba, the characteristics of 20 of which were confirmed by PCR. The growth rate of amoeba in 22˚C was more than 37˚C. Eight of the samples grew at 44˚C, but flagellate forming test and PCR were negative for Naegleria fowleri. Two of them were identified morphologically as Balamuthia and Sappinia.Conclusion: Since Fars province is located in the subtropical region where there are a lot of parks and green areas with surface water, the potential risk of diseases caused by free-living amoebae should be considered. Further investigations about various aspects of these important opportunistic protozoa are recommended especially for establishment of appropriate prevention tools.
- da Rocha-Azevedo B, Tanowitz HB, Marciano-Cabral F. Diagnosis of infections caused by pathogenic freeliving amoebae. Interdisciplinary perspectives on infectious diseases. 2009; ID 251406.
- Jayasekera S, Sissons J, Tucker J, Rogers C, Nolder D, Warhurst D, et al. Post-mortem culture of Balamuthia mandrillaris from the brain and cerebrospinal fluid of a case of granulomatous amoebic meningoencephalitis, using human brain microvascular endothelial cells. J Med Microbiol 2004; 53(10): 1007-12. 3 Kilvington S, Gray T, Dart J, Morlet N, Beeching JR, Frazer DG, et al. Acanthamoeba keratitis: t he role of domestic tap water contamination in the United Kingdom. Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci 2004; 45(1): 165-9.
- Visvesvara GS, Moura H, Schuster FL. Pathogenic and opportunistic free-living amoebae: Acanthamoeba spp., Balamuthia mandrillaris, Naegleria fowleri, and Sappinia diploidea. FEMS Immunol Med Microbiol 2007; 50(1): 1-26.
- Gianinazzi C, Schild M, Zumkehr B, WÃ¼thrich F, NÃ¼esch I, Ryter R, et al. Screening of Swiss hot spring resorts for potentially pathogenic free-living amoebae. Exp Parasitol 2010; 126(1): 45-53.
- Khan NA. Acanthamoeba: biology and increasing importance in human health. Microbiol Rev 2006; 30(4): 564-95.
- Maghsood AH, Sissons J, Rezaian M, Nolder D, Warhurst D, Khan NA. Acanthamoeba genotype T4 from the UK and Iran and isolation of the T2 genotype from clinical isolates. J Med Microbiol 2005; 54(8): 755-9.
- Badirzadeh A, Niyyati M, Babaei Z, Amini H, Badirzadeh H, Rezaeian M. Isolation of free-living amoebae from Sarein hot springs in Ardebil Province, Iran. Iran J Parasitol 2011; 6(2): 1.
- Bagheri H, Shafiei R, Shafiei F, Sajjadi S. Isolation of Acanthamoeba Spp. from drinking waters in several hospitals of Iran. Iran J Parasitol 2010; 5(2): 19.
- Mahmoudi MR, Taghipour N, Eftekhar M, Haghighi A, Karanis P. Isolation of Acanthamoeba species in surface waters of Gilan Province-north of Iran. Parasitol Res 2012; 110(1): 473-7.
- Motazedian H, Karamian M, Noyes H, Ardehali S. DNA extraction and amplification of Leishmania from archived, Giemsa-stained slides, for the diagnosis of cutaneous leishmaniasis by PCR. Ann Trop Med Parasitol 2002; 96(1): 31-4.
- Sheehan KB, Fagg JA, Ferris MJ, Henson JM. PCR detection and analysis of the free-living amoeba Naegleria in hot springs in Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. Appl Environ Microbiol 2003; 69(10): 5914-8.
- Rezeaian M, Farnia S, Niyyati M, Rahimi F. Amoebic keratitis in Iran (1997-2007). Iran J Parasitol 2007; 2(3): 1-6.
- Rezaeian M, Niyyati M, Farnia S, Haghi AM. Isolation of Acanthamoeba spp. from different environmental sources. Iran J Parasitol 2008; 3(1): 44-7.
- Niyyati M, Lasjerdi Z, Nazar M, Haghighi A, Mojarad EN. Screening of recreational areas of rivers for potentially pathogenic free-living amoebae in the suburbs of Tehran, Iran. J Water Health 2012; 10(1): 140-6.
- Niyyati M, Lorenzo-Morales J, Rahimi F, Motevalli- Haghi A, Martin-Navarro CM, Farnia S, et al. Isolation and genotyping of potentially pathogenic Acanthamoeba strains from dust sources in Iran. Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg 2009; 103(4): 425-7.
- Ahmed Khan N. Pathogenesis of Acanthamoeba infections. Microb Pathog 2003; 34(6): 277-85.
- Edagawa A, Kimura A, Kawabuchi-Kurata T, Kusuhara Y, Karanis P. Isolation and genotyping of potentially pathogenic Acanthamoeba and Naegleria species from tap-water sources in Osaka, Japan. Parasitol Res 2009; 105(4): 1109-17.
- Tsvetkova N, Schild M, Panaiotov S, Kurdova- Mintcheva R, Gottstein B, Walochnik J, et al. The identification of free-living environmental isolates of amoebae from Bulgaria. Parasitol Res 2004; 92(5): 405-13.