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A preliminary study on Naegleria species in water bodies of Kurunegala district, Sri Lanka

Authors:

JANS Gunarathna,

Department of Parasitology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Peradeniya, 20400, Sri Lanka, LK
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D Iddawela,

Department of Parasitology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Peradeniya, 20400, Sri Lanka, LK
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S Wickramasinghe

Department of ParasitologyFaculty of MedicineUniversity of Peradeniya, LK
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Abstract

Introduction and Objective: Species belonging to the genus Naegleria are free-living ubiquitous protozoa. They have been isolated from most regions of the world. N. fowleri causes an acute, fulminant and rapidly fatal infection involving the central nervous system (CNS) in humans. It is known as primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM). Infection is generally acquired while swimming, diving and total submersion for bathing in freshwater-lakes and ponds. Many inland fresh water bodies are present in Sri Lanka. These water bodies are frequently used by people for their daily needs. However, studies have not yet been conducted to determine the prevalence of Naegleria species occurring in local water bodies. The present study was therefore, carried out to isolate Naegleria species from selected water bodies located in four Divisional Secretariat (DS) divisions in the Kurunegala district, Sri Lanka.

Methods: Two different sites (clear and turbid water) of each tank were selected for sampling. Two water samples (surface water and deep water) were collected from each site (4 samples from one tank). Altogether, eighty water samples were collected from 20 tanks. Culture, enflagellation test and staining were done to detect Naegleria species. ArcGIS 10.3 and MINITAB (14) software were used for the data analysis.

Results: Flagella transformation was observed in 19 (47.5%) surface water samples and 11 (27.5%) deep water samples. Of 20 tanks, 10 were positive for Naegleria species.

Conclusions: Findings of the present study suggest that more specific genotyping studies are needed to confirm the presence of pathogenic N. fowleri in the study area.

How to Cite: Gunarathna, J., Iddawela, D. and Wickramasinghe, S., 2018. A preliminary study on Naegleria species in water bodies of Kurunegala district, Sri Lanka. Sri Lankan Journal of Infectious Diseases, 8(2), pp.74–83. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sljid.v8i2.8216
Published on 31 Oct 2018.
Peer Reviewed

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