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Naegleria (formes).png
Different stages of Naegleria fowleri
Scientific classification
Domain: Eukaryota
(unranked): Excavata
Phylum: Percolozoa
Class: Heterolobosea
Order: Schizopyrenida
Family: Vahlkampfiidae
Genus: Naegleria

Naegleria /nɛˈɡlɪəriə/ is a genus of protozoa. The genus was named after French zoologist Mathieu Naegler. Naegleria is a microscopic amoeba that can cause a very rare, but severe, infection of the brain. The amoeba is commonly found in warm freshwater (for example, lakes, rivers, and hot springs) and soil. Only one species, Naegleria fowleri infects humans.[1]

Naegleria fowleri infects people by entering the body through the nose. This typically occurs when people go swimming or diving in warm freshwater places, like lakes and rivers. In very rare instances, Naegleria infections may also occur when contaminated water from other sources (such as inadequately chlorinated swimming pool water or heated tap water < 47 °C) enters the nose. Once the amoeba enters the brain, it causes a usually fatal infection called primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM).[2] Naegleria are also notable because some species change their form based on the chemistry of their surroundings, transitioning from an immobile cell to a flagellated cell.

The amoeba lives as a cyst on the sediments of the bottom of freshwater like lakes, ponds, and rivers.

Species include:


Further reading[edit]

De Jonckheere, Johan F. (November 2014). "What do we know by now about the genus Naegleria?". Experimental Parasitology. 145 (SI): S2–S9. doi:10.1016/j.exppara.2014.07.011. PMID 25108159. 

Moussa, Mirna; Tissot, Oceane; Guerlotte, Jerome; De Jonckheere, Johan F.; Talarmin, Antoine (January 2015). "Soil is the origin for the presence of Naegleria fowleri in the thermal recreational waters". Parasitology Research. 114 (1): 311–315. doi:10.1007/s00436-014-4197-x. 

Siddiqui, Ruqaiyyah; Khan, Naveed Ahmed (August 2014). "Primary Amoebic Meningoencephalitis Caused by Naegleria fowleri: An Old Enemy Presenting New Challenges". PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases. 8 (8): e3017. doi:10.1371/journal.pntd.0003017. 

External links[edit]