DAO 126:25-31 (2017)  -  DOI: https://doi.org/10.3354/dao03156

Cryptosporidium spp. and Giardia sp. in aquatic mammals in northern and northeastern Brazil

João Carlos Gomes Borges1,2,3,*, Danielle dos Santos Lima3, Edson Moura da Silva1, André Lucas de Oliveira Moreira2, Miriam Marmontel3, Vitor Luz Carvalho4, Rodrigo de Souza Amaral5, Stella Maris Lazzarini6, Leucio Câmara Alves

1Universidade Federal Rural de Pernambuco, Dom Manoel de Medeiros, s/n, Dois Irmãos, CEP: 52.171-900, Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil
2Fundação Mamíferos Aquáticos, 17 de agosto, 2001, Casa Forte, 52.061-540, Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil
3Grupo de Pesquisa em Mamíferos Aquáticos Amazônicos, Instituto de Desenvolvimento Sustentável Mamirauá, Estrada do Bexiga, 2584, Fonte Boa, 69.553-225, Tefé, Amazonas, Brazil
4Associação de Pesquisa e Preservação de Ecossistemas Aquáticos - AQUASIS, SESC Iparana, rua José de Alencar, 150, 61.627-210, Caucaia, CE, Brazil
5Instituto Federal de Educação, Ciência e Tecnologia do Amazonas, Avenida Cosme Ferreira, 8045, São José Operário, 69.083-000, Manaus, AM, Brazil
6Centro de Preservação e Pesquisa de Mamíferos Aquáticos, Rodovia Manaus-Caracarai, Km 122, 69.736-000, Balbina, Presidente Figueiredo, AM, Brazil
*Corresponding author:

ABSTRACT: Cryptosporidium and Giardia are protozoans that can infect humans and wild and domestic animals. Due to the growing importance of diseases caused by protozoan parasites in aquatic species, we aimed to evaluate the frequency of infection by Cryptosporidium spp. and Giardia sp. in aquatic and marine mammals in the northern and northeastern regions of Brazil. We collected 553 fecal samples from 15 species of wild-ranging and captive aquatic mammals in northern and northeastern Brazil. All samples were analyzed by the Kinyoun technique for identification of Cryptosporidium spp. oocysts. Giardia sp. cysts were identified by means of the centrifugal-flotation technique in zinc sulfate solution. Subsequently, all samples were submitted for direct immunofluorescence testing. The overall frequency of infection was 15.55% (86/553) for Cryptosporidium spp. and 9.04% (50/553) for Giardia sp. The presence of Cryptosporidium spp. was detected in samples from 5 species: neotropical river otter Lontra longicaudis (15.28%), giant otter Pteronura brasiliensis (41.66%), Guiana dolphin Sotalia guianensis (9.67%), Amazonian manatee Trichechus inunguis (16.03%), and Antillean manatee T. manatus (13.79%). Giardia sp. was identified in L. longicaudis (9.23%), P. brasiliensis (29.16%), pygmy sperm whale Kogia breviceps (100%), dwarf sperm whale K. sima (25%), S. guianensis (9.67%), T. inunguis (3.81%), and T. manatus (10.34%). This is the first report of Cryptosporidium spp. in L. longicaudis, P. brasiliensis, and S. guianensis, while the occurrence of Giardia sp., in addition to the 2 otter species, was also identified in manatees, thus extending the number of hosts susceptible to these parasitic agents.


KEY WORDS: Protozoa · Parasitic diseases · Zoonosis · Aquatic mammals · Conservation


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Cite this article as: Borges JCG, Lima DS, da Silva EM, Moreira ALO and others (2017) Cryptosporidium spp. and Giardia sp. in aquatic mammals in northern and northeastern Brazil. Dis Aquat Org 126:25-31. https://doi.org/10.3354/dao03156

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