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Giardia lamblia (G. intestinalis, G. duodenalis)

The infection agent is Giardia lamblia (also called Giardia intestinalis, Giardia duodenalis), a flagellate protozoan which can cause acute or chronic diarrhoeas. Infection with cysts occurs either by contaminated water or by the faecal-oral route from person to person. After excystation in the small intestine, trophozoites multiply and adhere to the surface of the gut epithelium. There is usually only intestinal colonization and no invasion of the mucosa. After encystation in the ileum, infective cysts pass out in the faeces. They can survive for long periods in cold water.

Life cycle of Giardia lamblia