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Host-specificity and -sensitivity of human-, bovine-, equine-, and swine-associated markers were evaluated by screening 49 fecal samples from six host groups. The archaeal human marker was detected in all (12/12) human fecal DNA samples tested but not in non-target host groups (0/37). However, the Bacteroidales human marker was positive in eight of 12 human samples and one of 37 animal fecal DNA samples (Table 2). The bovine archaeal marker was positive for 10 of 11 bovine DNA samples while the Bacteroidales bovine marker was detected in all cow fecal samples analyzed (11/11). The swine archaeal marker was detected in all pig fecal samples (8/8) while the archaeal equine marker was amplified in all equine samples (12/12). On the other hand, the swine and equine Bacteroidales markers were detected in seven of eight and 10 of 12 of each host's samples, respectively (Table 2).

Table 2

Specificity assays for host-specific markers in fecal samples

TargetNo. of samples testedNo. of positive PCR results
Human markers
Bovine markers
Swine markers
Equine markers
ArchaeaBacteriaArchaeaBacteriaArchaeaBacteriaArchaeaBacteria
Human 12 12/12 (100%) 8/12 (67%) ND ND ND ND ND ND 
Swine ND ND ND ND 8/8 (100%) 7/8 (91%) ND ND 
Cow 11 ND ND (10/11) 91% 11/11 (100%) ND ND ND ND 
Horse 12 ND ND ND ND ND ND 12/12 (100%) 10/12 (83%) 
Chicken ND ND ND ND ND ND ND ND 
Sheep ND 1/3 (33%) ND ND ND ND ND ND 
TargetNo. of samples testedNo. of positive PCR results
Human markers
Bovine markers
Swine markers
Equine markers
ArchaeaBacteriaArchaeaBacteriaArchaeaBacteriaArchaeaBacteria
Human 12 12/12 (100%) 8/12 (67%) ND ND ND ND ND ND 
Swine ND ND ND ND 8/8 (100%) 7/8 (91%) ND ND 
Cow 11 ND ND (10/11) 91% 11/11 (100%) ND ND ND ND 
Horse 12 ND ND ND ND ND ND 12/12 (100%) 10/12 (83%) 
Chicken ND ND ND ND ND ND ND ND 
Sheep ND 1/3 (33%) ND ND ND ND ND ND 

ND, not detected.

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