Giardia duodenalis is a common zoonotic protozoan parasite with a broad host distribution. The main objectives of the present study were to determine the prevalence of giardiasis and to reveal the genetic and haplotype diversity of G. duodenalis in symptomatic cats in Turkey. Fecal samples were collected from cats (n = 102) with diarrhea that were admitted to different pet clinics in the Central Anatolia region of Turkey. All samples were analyzed by microscopic examination (ME), rapid immunochromatographic test (ICT), and PCR targeting the β-giardin (bg) loci of the parasite. Phylogenetic, haplotype, and network analyses of G. duodenalis based on the bg gene were carried out. Overall, G. duodenalis was detected in 70/102 (68.6%) of the cats with diarrhea by ME (38/102, 37.3%), ICT (51/102, 50%), and PCR (30/102, 29.4%). According to sequence analyses of the bg gene region, all isolates were identified as G. duodenalis assemblage B. Haplotype analyses revealed 2 known and 8 novel haplotypes for G. duodenalis assemblage B. This study provides first prevalence and genetic and haplotype diversity data on G. duodenalis assemblage B from cats in Turkey.

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