A new species of Cryptosporidium (Apicomplexa:Cryptosporidiidae) from eastern grey Kangaroos (Macropus giganteus)

Michelle L. Power, Una M. Ryan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


Cryptosporidium macropodum n. sp is described. Oocysts of C. macropodum from the feces of kangaroos (Macropus spp.) are morphologically indistinguishable from other mammalian Cryptosporidium species, including C. parvum, C. hominis, C. suis, and C. canis. The oocysts are fully sporulated on excretion, lack sporocysts, and have an average width of 4.9 μm (4.5-6.0), a length of 5.4 μm (5.0-6.0), and a length:width ratio of 1.1. Phylogenetic analyses of the 18S ribosomal RNA, actin, and heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) loci demonstrate that C. macropodum is genetically distinct from all described Cryptosporidium species, including others found in marsupials. The parasite seems to be highly host-specific, because it has been found only in marsupials to date. Therefore, based on biological and molecular data, we consider C. macropodum a new species.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1114-1117
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Parasitology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2008

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