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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter April 18, 2017

Isolation and molecular characterization of a Naegleria strain from a recreational water fountain in Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain

María Reyes-Batlle, Carolina Wagner, Atteneri López-Arencibia, Ines Sifaoui, Enrique Martínez-Carretero, Basilio Valladares, Jose E. Piñero and Jacob Lorenzo-Morales
From the journal Acta Parasitologica


Free-Living Amoebae (FLA) are widely distributed protozoa in the environment and have been isolated from many sources such as dust, soil and water. Among the pathogenic genera included in this group Acanthamoeba spp., Naegleria fowleri and Balamuthia mandrillaris have been reported to be causative agents of lethal encephalitis, disseminated infections and keratitis. Naegleria fowleri is a pathogenic FLA species which causes Primary Amoebic Meningoencephalitis (PAM). At present there are not many available data on the distribution of Naegleria species in Spain from environmental sources. Therefore, the aim of this study was to evaluate the presence of this genus in recreational water sources in the island of Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain. In this study, ten samples collected from recreational water fountains were checked for the presence of Naegleria spp. using morphological and molecular identification tools. From the analysed samples, only one sample (seawater fountain) was positive for Naegleria spp. interestingly, not many reports of Naegleria spp. in seawater are available in the literature and thus awareness should be raised among the environmental and public health professionals.


This work was supported by the grants RICET (project no. RD12/0018/0012 of the programme of Redes Temáticas de Investigación Cooperativa, FIS), Spanish Ministry of Health, Madrid, Spain, the Project PI13/00490 "Protozoosis Emergentes por Amebas de Vida Libre: Aislamiento, Caracterización, Nuevas Aproximaciones Terapéuticas y Traslación Clínica de los Resultados" from the Instituto de Salud Carlos III, and Project ref. AGUA3 "Amebas de Vida Libre como Marcadores de Calidad del Agua" from Caja-Canarias Fundación. ALA was supported by a postdoctoral grant from the Fundación Canaria Manuel Morales, La Palma, Canary Islands. MRB was funded by the Project BIO24 (2016_25) "Principios activos inductores de apoptosis en la quimioterapia de tripanosomosis y leishmaniosis" from La Caixa Fundación. IS was funded by "Ayudas para estancias de estudiantes de posgrado e investigadores americanos y africanos – 2015" of the University of La Laguna. JLM was supported by the Ramón y Cajal Subprogramme from the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitivity RYC- 2011-08863.


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Received: 2016-11-16
Revised: 2016-12-16
Accepted: 2016-12-30
Published Online: 2017-4-18
Published in Print: 2017-6-1

© 2017 W. Stefański Institute of Parasitology, PAS

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