A new detection method was developed for the simultaneous quantification and genotyping of Cryptosporidium spp. in river water. Several modifications made to the US EPA Method 1623 enabled high and stable recovery of Cryptosporidium from 40 L of river water (geometric mean =35%, standard deviation =8.7%). Quenching probe PCR (QProbe PCR) was used to quantify the 18S rRNA gene of Cryptosporidium spp. This method could successfully detect single oocysts in a sample, and the lower quantitation limit was as low as 2.5 oocysts/sample. In addition, denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) followed by DNA sequencing was used to identify the genotypes. These methods were applied to detect Cryptosporidium spp. in the Koyama River, Japan. The positive ratio was 69% (11/16) with the maximum concentration of 59 oocysts/100 L. Seven genotypes including two novel ones were identified. These results showed that this detection method could provide valuable information on Cryptosporidium in river water, both in the concentration and in the genotypes, which is essential for the precise assessment of waterborne risk to human health.

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