L. F. Lares-Jiménez, Manuel Alejandro Borquez-Román, Christian Lares-García
Dec 1, 2018
Little is known about the prevalence of Balamuthia mandrillaris within the environment due to its difficult isolation, but once an axenic culture is established, it is relatively easy to maintain. As most of the time researchers are interested mainly in isolating B. mandrillaris from environmental samples, the flora that accompanies it becomes second in importance. Therefore, this study aimed to determine which potentially pathogenic free-living amoebae, in addition to B. mandrillaris, could be found co-inhabiting a source of natural thermal water called "Agua Caliente" (Mexico), where this amoeba has previously been detected twice by molecular methods. A third sampling from this same source was carried out to try to isolate B. mandrillaris and other free-living amoebae using 37 and 45 °C as isolation temperatures. For PCR techniques, specific primers were used for B. mandrillaris, Naegleria fowleri, and Acanthamoeba species, plus a universal primer set for the eukaryotic 18S SSU rRNA gene for other isolated amoebae. PCR products were sequenced for final identification. 42 strains of the primary isolate were obtained, but only 34 could be kept in culture. Of them, 23 strains were identified as Naegleria lovaniensis, eight strains as Acanthamoeba jacobsi, two strains as Stenamoeba sp. and only one was identified as Vermamoeba vermiformis. The isolation of B. mandrillaris was once again not successful, but the presence of potentially pathogenic and nonpathogenic free-living amoebae is reported for the first time in this type of water in Mexico thanks to molecular methodology.