Evaluation of immunofluorescence techniques for detection of Cryptosporidium oocysts and Giardia cysts from environmental samples

J. B. Rose, L. K. Landeen, K. R. Riley, C. P. Gerba

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62 Scopus citations

Abstract

Cryptosporidium and Giardia species are enteric protozoa which cause waterborne disease. The detection of these organisms in water relies on the detection of the oocyst and cyst forms or stages. Monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies were compared for their abilities to react with Giardia cysts and Cryptosporidium oocysts after storage in water, 3.7% formaldehyde, and 2.5% potassium dichromate, upon exposure to bleach, and in environmental samples. Three monoclonal antibodies to Cryptosporidium parvum were evaluated. Each test resulted in an equivalent detection of the oocysts after storage, after exposure to bleach, and in environmental samples. Oocysts levels declined slightly after 20 to 22 weeks of storage in water, and oocyst fluorescence and morphology were dull and atypical. Oocyst counts decreased after exposure to 2,500 mg of sodium hypochlorite per liter, and fluorescence and phase-contrast counts were similar. Sediment due to algae and clays found in environmental samples interfered with the detection of oocysts on membrane filters. Two monoclonal antibodies and a polyclonal antibody directed against Giardia lamblia cysts were evaluated. From the same seeded preparations, significantly greater counts were obtained with the polyclonal antibody. Of the two monoclonal antibodies, one resulted in significantly lower cyst counts. In preliminary studies, the differences between antibodies were not apparent when used on the environmental wastewater samples. After 20 to 22 weeks in water, cyst levels declined significantly by 67%. Cysts were not detected with monoclonal antibodies after exposure to approximately 5,000 mg of sodium hypochlorite per liter.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3189-3196
Number of pages8
JournalApplied and environmental microbiology
Volume55
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Food Science
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Ecology

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