Volume 85, Issue 5
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



The protozoan parasite has emerged as one of the most important water contaminants, causing waterborne outbreaks of diarrheal diseases worldwide. The small size of oocysts under the microscope and the possibility of changes in characteristics of oocysts, mainly in environmental samples, make the taxonomy of the genus difficult if morphologic characteristics are considered. This limitation encouraged the application of molecular methods to identify this microorganism. The aim of this study was to detect and identify by nested-polymerase chain reaction oocysts of present in water samples in the state of São Paulo, Brazil. Water samples were concentrated through a membrane filter, DNA was extracted by using a standard technique, and both amplification reactions used forward and reverse oligonucleotides that were complementary to 18S ribosomal RNA gene sequences. Thirty water samples from different sites of collection in the state of São Paulo were evaluated. oocysts were detected in 30% of the samples. By genoptyping, and sp. were identified in recreational water and was identified in surface water samples. This is the first report of in environmental samples in Brazil. Although identification of is still a difficult task, molecular methods are essential for specific identification and are a helpful tool to aid to understand the epidemiology of this parasite in Brazil.


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  • Received : 12 Aug 2010
  • Accepted : 09 May 2011
  • Published online : 01 Nov 2011

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