Submitted to: Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/16/2008
Publication Date: 1/1/2009
Citation: Santin, M., Fayer, R. 2009. Enterocytozoon bieneusi genotypes nomenclature based on the ITS sequence– a consensus. Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology. 56(1):34-38.
Interpretive Summary: There are currently 80 genotypes of Enterocytozoon bieneusi that infect humans, domesticated and wild mammals, and birds. Of these, there are many molecularly similar genotypes that appear to be host specific. Other genotypes have been identified from a variety of host species. Because none of these genotypes have taxonomic status and therefore do not adhere to the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature regarding naming, some genotypes have received multiple names, each different and in separate publications by different authors. Consequently, even Microsporidia specialists have found that it is complicated and difficult to efficiently utilize the scientific literature because of the proliferation of genotypes with overlapping names and multiple hosts. A logical method for naming present and future genotypes is proposed that can be clearly understood and will prevent further confusion. This will benefit scientists in action and regulatory agencies as well as epidemiologists, veterinarians, and health care providers who must diagnose, determine sources of infection, and determine the need, if any, for treatment strategies.
Technical Abstract: There are 80 genotypes of Enterocytozoon bieneusi reported to infect humans, domesticated and wild mammals, and birds. Many molecularly similar genotypes cluster with specific host species and appear to be host specific such as the bovine isolates BEB1, 2, 3, 4, and 6. Others have been reported from infections in a variety of host species. For example, genotype D has been reported from humans in Germany, the United Kingdom, the United States, Peru, Gabon, Niger, the Cameroons, and Thailand, as well as from pigs, cats, macaques, muskrats, raccoons, beavers and foxes. Because genotypes are simply names that refer to gene sequences, they have no taxonomic status and do not follow any of the rules of the ICZN regarding species or other taxon naming. The present plethora of naming schemes has resulted in multiple names for the same genotype. Some genotypes have received 4, 5, or 6 names, each in a separate publication by different authors. For example, genotype D also has been reported as genotype pigEBITS9, WL8, and Peru 9. Even Microsporidia specialists find the names confusing and have difficulty in efficiently using the scientific literature. We propose a logical method for assigning names for the present and future genotypes that will be followed by investigators in this field, resulting in a system of names that can be clearly understood and will prevent further confusion.