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ALEXANDER C.L.,Scottish Parasite Diagnostic and Reference Laboratory | CURRIE S.,Scottish Parasite Diagnostic and Reference Laboratory | POLLOCK K.,Health Protection Scotland | SMITH-PALMER A.,Health Protection Scotland | JONES B.L.,Scottish Parasite Diagnostic and Reference Laboratory
Epidemiology and Infection | Year: 2017

Giardia duodenalis and Cryptosporidium species are protozoan parasites capable of causing gastrointestinal disease in humans and animals through the ingestion of infective faeces. Whereas Cryptosporidium species can be acquired locally or through foreign travel, there is the mis-conception that giardiasis is considered to be largely travel-associated, which results in differences in laboratory testing algorithms. In order to determine the level of variation in testing criteria and detection methods between diagnostic laboratories for both pathogens across Scotland, an audit was performed. Twenty Scottish diagnostic microbiology laboratories were invited to participate with questions on sample acceptance criteria, testing methods, testing rates and future plans for pathogen detection. Reponses were received from 19 of the 20 laboratories representing each of the 14 territorial Health Boards. Detection methods varied between laboratories with the majority performing microscopy, one using a lateral flow immunochromatographic antigen assay, another using a manually washed plate-based enzyme immunoassay (EIA) and one laboratory trialling a plate-based EIA automated with an EIA plate washer. Whereas all laboratories except one screened every stool for Cryptosporidium species, an important finding was that significant variation in the testing algorithm for detecting Giardia was noted with only four laboratories testing all diagnostic stools. The most common criteria were ‘travel history’ (11 laboratories) and/or ‘when requested’ (14 laboratories). Despite only a small proportion of stools being examined in 15 laboratories for Giardia (2%–18% of the total number of stools submitted), of interest is the finding that a higher positivity rate was observed for Giardia than Cryptosporidium in 10 of these 15 laboratories. These findings highlight that the underreporting of Giardia in Scotland is likely based on current selection and testing algorithms. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2017


Nichols G.L.,Public Health England | Freedman J.,Public Health England | Pollock K.G.,Health Protection Scotland | Rumble C.,Public Health England | And 10 more authors.
Eurosurveillance | Year: 2015

Cyclospora cayetanensis was identified in 176 returned travellers from the Riviera Maya region of Mexico between 1 June and 22 September 2015; 79 in the United Kingdom (UK) and 97 in Canada. UK cases completed a food exposure questionnaire. This increase in reported Cyclospora cases highlights risks of gastrointestinal infections through travelling, limitations in Cyclospora surveillance and the need for improved hygiene in the production of food consumed in holiday resorts. © 2015, European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). All rights reserved.


Shone J.,Clinical Microbiology | Winter A.,Sandyford Sexual Health Clinic | Jones B.L.,Scottish Parasite Diagnostic and Reference Laboratory | Butt A.,Aberdeen Sexual & Reproductive Health Center | And 5 more authors.
International Journal of STD and AIDS | Year: 2016

Trichomoniasis caused by the protozoan parasite Trichomonas vaginalis (TV) is one of the most commonly occurring sexually transmitted infections of non-viral origin. This study examines the prevalence of TV infection amongst consenting symptomatic women attending three of the largest sexual health clinics in Scotland, United Kingdom. In addition, an evaluation of three testing methods to identify TV from vaginal fluid was performed involving the commercial Hologic APTIMA TV transcription-mediated amplification assay, a real-time PCR assay and microscopy. A total of 398 patients consented to participation and all were tested by the three methods. The prevalence of TV was 2.8% (n = 11), with both molecular assays correctly detecting an additional two cases of TV compared to microscopy. The prevalence of three other sexually transmitted pathogens, namely Chlamydia trachomatis, Neisseria gonorrhoeae and herpes simplex virus were 7.3% (n = 31), 0.3% (n = 1) and 1.5% (n = 6), respectively. The majority of TV cases (78%; n = 8) occurred in women greater than 29 years of age compared to most Chlamydia trachomatis cases, who were aged 30 or less (97%; n = 30). © 2016, © The Author(s) 2016.


PubMed | Chalmers Center, Sexual Health Clinic, Clinical Microbiology, Aberdeen Sexual & Reproductive Health Center and 2 more.
Type: Journal Article | Journal: International journal of STD & AIDS | Year: 2015

Trichomoniasis caused by the protozoan parasite Trichomonas vaginalis (TV) is one of the most commonly occurring sexually transmitted infections of non-viral origin. This study examines the prevalence of TV infection amongst consenting symptomatic women attending three of the largest sexual health clinics in Scotland, United Kingdom. In addition, an evaluation of three testing methods to identify TV from vaginal fluid was performed involving the commercial Hologic APTIMA TV transcription-mediated amplification assay, a real-time PCR assay and microscopy. A total of 398 patients consented to participation and all were tested by the three methods. The prevalence of TV was 2.8% (n=11), with both molecular assays correctly detecting an additional two cases of TV compared to microscopy. The prevalence of three other sexually transmitted pathogens, namely Chlamydia trachomatis, Neisseria gonorrhoeae and herpes simplex virus were 7.3% (n=31), 0.3% (n=1) and 1.5% (n=6), respectively. The majority of TV cases (78%; n=8) occurred in women greater than 29 years of age compared to most Chlamydia trachomatis cases, who were aged 30 or less (97%; n=30).

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