Distribution of Acanthamoeba genotypes isolated from recreational water resources: a review

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Nurain Farahin Azizan
Hartini Yusof


Acanthamoeba spp. are ubiquitously living in the environment of both natural and man-made. They are pathogenically known to cause blinding keratitis and fatal encephalitis in humans. The severity of Acanthamoeba infection can be life-threatening although it is rarely reported. Acanthamoeba spp. have been widely isolated from various environmental sources, including recreational waters, such as hot springs, rivers, swimming pools, and seawater. The presence of pathogenic Acanthamoeba spp. in these resources is significant as many people visit these places for recreational activities. They can be possibly exposed to the infection. Genotype T4 is known as the most pathogenic and prevalent as it has been identified from a variety of sources, including environmental and clinical samples. It also has the highest association with human infections, followed by T5. Acanthamoeba spp. can be identified by using culture and molecular techniques, which are polymerase chain reaction and gene sequencing. This review provided an overview of the distribution of Acanthamoeba genotypes from recreational waters across the world from available studies, which was aimed to describe the prevalence of genotypes isolated. Further, this review also described the genotypes associated with Acanthamoeba spp. infections, which are keratitis and encephalitis.


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