Cysts of Giardia duodenalis were collected in Mexico from symptomatic children (n = 9) and from pet dogs (n = 5), and they were directly characterized by nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification of the β-giardin gene. Eight isolates of human origin established as in vitro cultures and 2 reference strains, representing assemblages A and B of G. duodenalis, were also analyzed. PCR–restriction fragment length polymorphism showed that all isolates belonged to assemblage A. Sequence analyses indicated that the large majority of isolates were of the A1 genotype; interestingly, 2 human isolates displayed the A3 genotype, which has been previously identified in human isolates from Italy. The presence of cysts of the A1 and A3 genotypes in isolates from pet dogs is consistent with their role as reservoirs for human infection, although further studies are needed to confirm the occurrence of zoonotic transmission. Remarkably, cysts of assemblage B have not been found in any of the Mexican isolates studied to date.

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