Genomic diversity of the human intestinal parasite Entamoeba histolytica.

Weedall, GD; Clark, CG; Koldkjaer, P; Kay, S; Bruchhaus, I; Tannich, E; Paterson, S; Hall, N; (2012) Genomic diversity of the human intestinal parasite Entamoeba histolytica. Genome biology, 13 (5). R38. ISSN 1465-6906 DOI:

Text - Published Version

Download (986kB) | Preview


: ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Entamoeba histolytica is a significant cause of disease worldwide. However, little is known about the genetic diversity of the parasite. We re-sequenced the genomes of ten laboratory cultured lines of the eukaryotic pathogen Entamoeba histolytica in order to develop a picture of genetic diversity across the genome. RESULTS: The extreme nucleotide composition bias and repetitiveness of the E. histolytica genome provide a challenge for short-read mapping, yet we were able to define putative single nucleotide polymorphisms in a large portion of the genome. The results suggest a rather low level of single nucleotide diversity, although genes and gene families with putative roles in virulence are among the more polymorphic genes. We did observe large differences in coverage depth among genes, indicating differences in gene copy number between genomes. We found evidence indicating that recombination has occurred in the history of the sequenced genomes, suggesting that E. histolytica may reproduce sexually. CONCLUSIONS: E. histolytica displays a relatively low level of nucleotide diversity across its genome. However, large differences in gene family content and gene copy number are seen among the sequenced genomes. The pattern of polymorphism indicates that E. histolytica reproduces sexually, or has done so in the past, which has previously been suggested but not proven.

Item Type: Article
Faculty and Department: Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases
Faculty of Infectious and Tropical Diseases > Dept of Pathogen Molecular Biology
PubMed ID: 22630046
Web of Science ID: 308545500005


Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads since deposit
Accesses by country - last 12 months
Accesses by referrer - last 12 months
Impact and interest
Additional statistics for this record are available via IRStats2

Actions (login required)

Edit Item Edit Item