An aquatic biomonitoring of Giardia cysts and Cryptosporidium oocysts in river water corresponding to five villages situated in three states in peninsular Malaysia was determined. There were 51.3% (20/39) and 23.1% (9/39) samples positive for Giardia and Cryptosporidium (oo)cysts, respectively. Overall mean concentration between villages for Giardia cysts ranged from 0.10 to 25.80 cysts/l whilst Cryptosporidium oocysts ranged from 0.10 to 0.90 oocysts/l. Detailed results of the river samples from five villages indicated that Kuala Pangsun 100% (9/9), Kemensah 77.8% (7/9), Pos Piah 33.3% (3/9) and Paya Lebar 33.3% (1/3) were contaminated with Giardia cysts whilst Cryptosporidium (oo)cysts were only detected in Kemensah (100 %; 9/9) and Kuala Pangsun (66.6%; 6/9). However, the water samples from Bentong were all negative for these waterborne parasites. Samples were collected from lower point, midpoint and upper point. Midpoint refers to the section of the river where the studied communities are highly populated. Meanwhile, the position of the lower point is at least 2 km southward of the midpoint and upper point is at least 2 km northward of the midpoint. The highest mean concentration for (oo)cysts was found at the lower points [3.15 ± 6.09 (oo)cysts/l], followed by midpoints [0.66 ± 1.10 (oo)cysts/l] and upper points [0.66 ± 0.92 (oo)cysts/l]. The mean concentration of Giardia cysts was highest at Kuala Pangsun (i.e. 5.97 ± 7.0 cysts/l), followed by Kemensah (0.83 ± 0.81 cysts/l), Pos Piah (0.20 ± 0.35 cysts/l) and Paya Lebar (0.10 ± 0.19 cysts/l). On the other hand, the mean concentration of Cryptosporidium oocysts was higher at Kemensah (0.31 ± 0.19 cysts/l) compared to Kuala Pangsun (0.03 ± 0.03cysts/l). All the physical and chemical parameters did not show significant correlation with both protozoa. In future, viability status and molecular characterisation of Giardia and Cryptosporidium should be applied to identify species and genotypes/subgenotypes for better understanding of the epidemiology of these waterborne parasites.
This study investigated the distribution of parasites as main contaminants in water environments of peninsular Malaysia (October 2011-December 2011) and the southeastern coast of Thailand (June 2012). Sixty-four water samples, 33 from Malaysia and 31 from Thailand, of various water types were examined according to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency guidelines. Drinking or household water types from both countries were free from parasitic contamination. The recreational/environmental (except a swimming pool in Malaysia) and effluent water types from these two countries were contaminated with waterborne parasites: Giardia (0.04-4 cysts/L), Cryptosporidium (0.06-2.33 oocysts/L), hookworm (6.67-350 ova/L), Ascaris (0.33-33.33 ova/L), and Schistosoma (9.25-13.33 ova/L). The most contaminated sites were recreational lake garden 3 in Malaysia and river 2 in Thailand. Higher concentrations of Giardia, Cryptosporidium, and hookworm were found in samples from Malaysia than in samples from Thailand. The presence of Giardia cysts showed a significant association with the presence of Cryptosporidium oocysts (P < 0.005).
Blastocystis sp. is a common intestinal parasite found in faecal sample surveys. Several studies have implicated human-to-human, zoonotic and waterborne transmissions by Blastocystis sp. However, there has been no study providing evidence interlinking these three transmissions in a community. We have previously shown a high prevalence of Blastocystis sp. subtype 4 amongst village dwellers in Bahunipati, Nepal, and the present study extends the observation to assess if the same subtype of Blastocystis sp. occurs in animals they rear and rivers they frequent.
A catchment-scale investigation of the prevalence of Cryptosporidium and Giardia in the Kuang River Basin was carried out during the dry and rainy seasons. Water samples were collected from the Kuang River and its tributaries as well as a major irrigation canal at the study site. We also investigated the prevalence of gastrointestinal parasitic infection among dairy and beef cattle hosts. Cryptosporidium and/or Giardia were detected in all the rivers considered for this study, reflecting their ubiquity within the Kuang River Basin. The high prevalence of Cryptosporidium/Giardia in the upper Kuang River and Lai River is of a particular concern as both drain into the Mae Kuang Reservoir, a vital source of drinking-water to many local towns and villages at the research area. We did not, however, detected neither Cryptosporidium nor Giardia were in the irrigation canal. The frequency of Cryptosporidium/Giardia detection nearly doubled during the rainy season compared to the dry season, highlighting the importance of water as an agent of transport. In addition to the overland transport of these protozoa from their land sources (e.g. cattle manure, cess pits), Cryptosporidium/Giardia may also be re-suspended from the streambeds (a potentially important repository) into the water column of rivers during storm events. Faecal samples from dairy and beef cattle showed high infection rates from various intestinal parasites - 97% and 94%, respectively. However, Cryptosporidium and Giardia were only detected in beef cattle. The difference in management style between beef (freeranging) and dairy cattle (confined) may account for this disparity. Finally, phylogenetic analyses revealed that the Cryptosporidium/Giardia-positive samples contained C. ryanae (non-zoonotic) as well as Giardia intestinalis assemblages B (zoonotic) and E (non-zoonotic). With only basic water treatment facilities afforded to them, the communities of the rural area relying on these water supplies are highly at risk to Cryptosporidium/Giardia infections.
The epidemiology of giardiasis in rural villages in Peninsular Malaysia was examined in the context of the One Health triad that encompasses humans, animals and environment (i.e. river water). A cross-sectional study was carried out among five rural communities in Malaysia to determine the prevalence of Giardia duodenalis in humans, animals and river water. Fecal samples collected from humans and animals were examined by light microscopy. Water was sampled from the rivers adjacent to the target communities and investigated for the occurrence of Giardia cysts. The isolated cysts were further genotyped targeting the glutamate dehydrogenase and triosephosphate isomerase genes. The overall prevalence of G. duodenalis was 6.7% (18/269) and 4.7% (8/169) among humans and animals, respectively. Giardia cysts (mean concentration range: 0.10-5.97 cysts/L) were also found in adjacent rivers at four out of the five villages examined. At Kemensah and Kuala Pangsun, Giardia cysts were isolated from humans [rate: 3.7% each (of 54 each)], animals [rates: 6.3% (of 62) and 11.3% (of 16), respectively] and river water [average concentration of 9 samples each: 0.83±0.81 and 5.97±7.00, respectively]. For both villages at Pos Piah and Paya Lebar, 12.2% (of 98) and 6.1% (of 33) of collected human samples were infected, respectively whilst none of the collected animals samples in these villages were found to be positive. The river water samples of these two villages were also contaminated (average concentration: 0.20±0.35 (of 9) and 0.10±0.19 (of 3), respectively). In conclusion, Giardia cysts were simultaneously observed in the human-animal-environment (i.e., river water) interfaces in at least two of five studied communities highlighting a vital need to improve understanding on the interplay of transmission dynamics, the role of infected humans and animals in contaminating the water sources and the role of water as a vehicle of disease transmission in these communities. Indeed, this study illustrates the One Health approach which is to recognize that the optimal health of humans are interconnected with the well-being of animals and their environment.
This study is the first report on the occurrence of Giardia and Cryptosporidium (oo)cysts in recreational rivers water from Malaysia. It was carried out in water samples at two rivers, 'Sungai Congkak' and 'Sungai Batu', located in Selangor State. The occurrence of both Giardia lamblia and Cryptosporidium parvum (oo)cysts was higher in Sungai Congkak (50% or 15/30 and 10% or 3/30 respectively) than Sungai Batu (16% or 5/30 and 3.3% or 1/30 respectively). The mean density of cysts/L was 0.72 in Sungai Congkak and 0.023 in Sungai Batu, and that of oocysts/L was 0.023 in Sungai Congkak and 0.0033 in Sungai Batu, showing that the occurrence of Giardia was higher and more frequent than Cryptosporidium in both rivers. Sungai Congkak also showed higher faecal coliforms count (ranging from 0.48x10³ to 73x10³ CFU/100 mL) than Sungai Batu (0.41x10³ to 16x10³ CFU/100 mL). On the other hand, the Giardia and Cryptosporidium (oo)cysts and faecal coliforms were more concentrated at the downstream station, followed by midstream and upstream stations which might be due to human factors where settlements and recreation areas were located around and between midstream and downstream stations. The (oo)cysts and faecal coliforms also increased during public holidays due to the significantly higher number of visitors (bathers) compared with the week days. All the parameters (physical, faecal coliforms and rainfall) did not show consistent significant correlation (based on r values of Pearson correlation analysis) with both protozoa, therefore these parameters are not suitable as indicator for the presence of Giardia and Cryptosporidium (oo)cysts in both rivers.
A study to determine the contribution of Giardia cysts and Cryptosporidium oocysts from cattle farms was carried out at the Langat Basin. This study investigated the contribution of cattle farms, located near Sungai Langat and Sungai Semenyih, towards river contamination with these cysts and oocysts. The findings showed that out of 24 samples of water taken from Sungai Semenyih, 4.2% was positive for Giardia cysts with a concentration of 1.3 cysts/L and 20.8% were positive with Cryptosporidium oocysts with a range of 0.7 - 2.7 oocysts/L. At Sungai Langat, from the 43 samples taken, 23.3% were positive for Giardia cysts with a range of 1.5 - 9 cysts/L whereas 11.6% were positive with Cryptosporidium oocysts with a range of 2.5 - 240 oocysts/L. Isolation of cysts and oocysts in bovine faecal materials revealed that 14.6% of faecal samples were positive for Giardia cysts which had a range of 75 - 1.3x104 cysts/g and 25% were positive for Cryptosporidium oocysts with a range of 50 - 3.9x105 oocysts/g. From the cattle wastewater, 98% were positive with oocysts and 6.7% with cysts. The concentrations were between 20 - 3.1x103 oocysts/mL for Cryptosporidium and 4 - 75 cysts/mL for Giardia. Given that the prevalence of Cryptosporidium and Giardia are high amongst the cattle and the positive findings of the (oo)cysts in the river samples, it could be deduced that there is a very high possibility of the cattle farms contaminating the river with Giardia cysts and Cryptosporidium oocysts. Viability study of Cryptosporidium oocysts in the surrounding soil and pond within the cattle farm showed that the viability of Cryptosporidium oocysts decreased with time. It was estimated that it will take 52 days for all the oocysts from both environment to be non-viable. With a viability rate of approximately 2 months in a cattle farm setup, river water contaminated with Cryptosporidium oocysts has a high chance of acting as an agent of transmission. As cattle farms are also inhabited by the owners and their families, this problem may pose a threat to humans (e.g. children) especially if they are dependent on the river water as their source of water for their daily activities.
The lecanicephalidean cestodes parasitizing the spiral intestine of the endangered giant freshwater whipray, Urogymnus polylepis (Bleeker), are investigated for the first time. Eight host specimens were collected between 2002 and 2008 at 2 collecting sites off the eastern coast of Borneo: 6 from the Kinabatangan River (Malaysia) and 2 from a fish market in Tarakan (Indonesia). Two of these individuals were found to be infected with a total of 3 new species of TetragonocephalumShipley and Hornell, 1905. Tetragonocephalum georgei n. sp. and Tetragonocephalum opimum n. sp. were recovered from a host specimen from the Kinabatangan River, and Tetragonocephalum levicorpum n. sp. was found parasitizing a host specimen purchased at a fish market in Tarakan. Specimens of each of the new species were prepared for light microscopy; specimens of 2 of the new species were prepared for scanning electron microscopy, and histological sections were prepared for 1 of the new species. The 3 new species are distinct from the 9 valid species of Tetragonocephalum and the 1 species inquirendum based on, for example, total length, number of proglottids and testes, and size of the scolex and acetabula. Tetragonocephalum georgei n. sp. and T. levicorpum n. sp. are unusual among their congeners in that they are euapolytic (i.e., gravid proglottids were not observed) rather than apolytic. They differ from one another in scolex and acetabula size. Tetragonocephalum opimum n. sp. is unusual among its congeners in its possession of vitelline follicles arranged in 2, rather than 3, regions in the proglottid. These new species increase the total number of valid species of Tetragonocephalum to 12 and the total number of known cestodes from U. polylepis to 13 species across 6 genera in 4 orders. This is the first account of lecanicephalideans reported from freshwater. The taxonomic status of each of the 32 nominal taxa historically associated with Tetragonocephalum is re-assessed. Type host identities of all valid species are revised and discussed in light of recent taxonomic efforts in the Dasyatidae Jordan and Gilbert.