This genus was originally created by Frenkel in 1977. Its use was discontinued but was resurrected in 2005 by Barta et al. This genus is currently used to group species that have tetrasporozoic, diplosporocystic oocysts without Stieda bodies in their sporocysts. These species infect the entrocytes of mammals and are transmitted by the orofaecal route.
The type species of this genus is Cystoisospora felis.Wenyon 1923
These parasites normally infect the entrocytes of the small intestine and are spread by the orofaecal route. The definitive hosts are cats but other species including various species of rodents may be infected. No further development occurs in these paratenic hosts and the parastites remain dormant until ingested by a definitive host.
Clinical signs include watery diarrhea, vomiting, fever and weight loss. The diagnosis is made by microscopic examination of the stool. Distinguishing between the species of Cystoisospora is most easily done with PCR. This method can also be used to make the diagnosis.
Hygiene on the premises is important in prevention. Good litter tray hygiene is also critical in multi-cat households. Utensils, runs, cages and other implements should be steam-cleaned or washed in boiling water. Because of the importance of paratenic hosts such as cockroaches, insect control is critical.
- Barta JR, Schrenzel MD, Carreno R, Rideout BA (2005) The genus Atoxoplasma (Garnham 1950) as a junior objective synonym of the genus Isospora (Schneider 1881) species infecting birds and resurrection of Cystoisospora (Frenkel 1977) as the correct genus for Isospora species infecting mammals. J Parasitol 91(3):726-727
- Samarasinghe B et al (2008) Phylogenetic analysis of Cystoisospora species at the rRNA ITS1 locus and development of a PCR-RFLP assay. Exp Parasitol 118(4) 592–595
- Schuster RK et al (2009) The parasite fauna of stray domestic cats (Felis catus) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Parasitol Res 105(1): 125–134
- Coelho WM et al (2009) Occurrence of gastrointestinal parasites in fecal samples of cats in Andradina City, São Paulo. Rev Bras Parasitol Vet 18(2), 46–49
- Lloyd S (2001) Activity of toltrazuril and diclazuril against Isospora species in kittens and puppies. Vet Rec 148:509