Blastocystis

Blastocystis is a genus of single-celled protozoan parasites belonging to a group of organisms known as the Stramenopiles (also called Heterokonts) that includes algae, diatoms, and water molds. Blastocystis comprises several species, living in the gastrointestinal tracts of species as diverse as humans, farm animals, birds, rodents, reptiles, amphibians, fish, and cockroaches.

Blastocystis exhibits low host specificity, and many different species of Blastocystis can infect humans and by current convention, any of these species would be identified as Blastocystis hominis if they were identified in a human. These have a widespread geographic distribution and are found at a rate of 5-10% in most developed countries, and a rate of up to 50% in less developed areas. High rates of infection are also found in individuals in developed countries who work with animals. Although the role of Blastocystis hominis in human disease is often referred to as controversial, a systematic survey of research studies conducted by 11 infectious disease specialists from nine countries, found that over 95% of papers published in the last 10 years identified it as causing illness in immunocompetent individuals. The paper attributed confusion over pathogenicity to the existence of asymptomatic carriers, a phenomenon the study noted is common to all gastrointestinal protozoa.

Read more about Blastocystis:  Classification, Signs and Symptoms, Taxonomy, Epidemiology, Morphology, Life Cycle, Obtaining and Culturing Blastocystis, Mitochondrion-like Organelles

Other articles related to "blastocystis":

Blastocystis - Mitochondrion-like Organelles
... The organelles in Blastocystis that resemble mitochondria are an enigma as the organism is a strict anaerobe ... suggest that many other metabolic pathways characteristic of mitochondria are still present in the Blastocystis organelles ...
Blastocystosis - Treatment
... associated with eradication of Blastocystis from patients, describing it as "an infection that is hard to get rid of." A 1999 in vitro from Pakistan study found 40% of isolates are resistant to ... Miconazole has been reported as an agent against Blastocystis growth in-vitro ... have described the successful use of a variety of discontinued antiprotozoals in treatment of Blastocystis infection ...
Blastocystosis - Pathogeneses
... mechanisms have been reported in studies of Blastocystis infection Barrier Disruption In isolates from Blastocystis sp ... subtype 4, study has demonstrated that Blastocystis has the ability to alter the arrangement of F-actin in intestinal epithelial cells ... to contribute to the diarrheal symptoms sometimes observed in Blastocystis patients ...
Blastocystosis - Epidemiology
... Like other protozoal infections, the prevalence of Blastocystis infection varies depending on the area investigated and the population selected ... A number of different species groups of Blastocystis infect humans, with some being reported to cause disease while others do not ... To date surveys have not distinguished between different types of Blastocystis in humans so the significance of findings may be difficult to evaluate ...
Blastocystosis
... refers to a medical condition caused by infection with Blastocystis ... Blastocystis is a protozoal, single-celled parasite that inhabits the gastrointestinal tracts of humans and animals ... Many different types of Blastocystis exist, and they can infect humans, farm animals, birds, rodents, amphibians, reptiles, fish, and even cockroaches ...