PCR techniques in combination with conventional parasite concentration procedures have potential for the sensitive and specific detection of Toxoplasma gondii oocysts in water. Three real-time PCR assays based on the B1 gene and a 529-bp repetitive element were analyzed for the detection of T. gondii tachyzoites and oocysts. Lower sensitivity and specificity were obtained with the B1 gene-based PCR than with the 529-bp repeat-based PCR. New procedures for the real-time PCR detection of T. gondii oocysts in concentrates of surface water were developed and tested in conjunction with a method for the direct extraction of inhibitor-free DNA from water. This technique detected as few as one oocyst seeded to 0.5 ml of packed pellets from water samples concentrated by Envirocheck filters. Thus, this real-time PCR may provide a detection method alternative to the traditional mouse assay and microscopy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
- Food Science