Abstract

Free-living amoebae (FLA) include many genera which cause serious diseases such as sight-threatening keratitis, cutaneous ulcers and fatal encephalitis. This study was conducted due to the lack of research regarding genotypes Acanthamoeba, Naegleria and Vermamoeba in mineral springs of Guilan province in northern Iran. Twenty-five water samples were collected from mineral springs in Guilan Province. After filtration through nitrocellulose membrane, samples were cultured on non-nutrient agar plates. The morphological key of Page was used to identify free-living amoebae (FLA) using an inverted microscope. Positive cultures were analyzed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and genotypes based on the NCBI database. Eleven (44%) samples were positive for Acanthamoeba, Naegleria and Vermamoeba. By sequencing the positive isolates, the strains were shown to belong to Acanthamoeba castellanii (three case isolates belonged to T4 genotype), three cases of Vermamoeba vermiformis, and two cases of N. australiensis, two cases of N. pagei and one case of N. gruberi. According to our research the occurrence of Acanthamoeba, Naegleria spp. and Vermamoeba spp. in mineral springs could be hazardous for high risk persons. Regular monitoring and posting warning signs of these waters by health planners could prevent free-living amoebae mediated diseases.

You do not currently have access to this content.