Müller, Norbert; Müller, Joachim (2016). Giardia. In: Walochnik, Julia; Duchêne, Michael (eds.) Molecular Parasitology (pp. 93-114). Wien: Springer Verlag 10.1007/978-3-7091-1416-2_4

Full text not available from this repository. (Request a copy)

The intestinal protozoan parasite Giardia duodenalis (syn. Giardia lamblia ,
Giardia intestinalis ) causes diarrhoea in humans and animals worldwide. The
life cycle of G. duodenalis consists of two stages, the fl agellated trophozoite
proliferating in the upper part of the small intestine and the non proliferative cyst representing the infectious stage of the parasite. Both stages can be handled in vitro and in vivo. Trophozoites are pear-shaped, motile cells exhibiting a convex dorsal and a concave ventral side. The cell body is formed by a microtubule cytoskeleton. The whole genome contained in two diploid nuclei per trophozoite has been sequenced and characterised. It has some prokaryote-like features such as short promoter sequences. Moreover, some key enzymes of energy and intermediate metabolisms share common features with prokaryotic enzymes and may have been acquired by lateral transfer. Giardia does not contain mitochondria and peroxisomes, but mitosomes, most likely an evolutionarily reduced version of a mitochondrion. The energy metabolism is chemoheterotrophic and works under anaerobic or semiaerobic conditions with glucose as main energy and carbon source and arginine as another important energy source. The present book chapter selectively reviews current knowledge in Giardia research highlighting its basic genetic, physiological and, to a lower extent, its immunological properties. Furthermore, this chapter also shows that G. duodenalis is a suitable cellular
model system for the investigation of fundamental biological principles.

Item Type:

Book Section (Book Chapter)


05 Veterinary Medicine > Research Foci > Host-Pathogen Interaction
05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology (DIP) > Institute of Parasitology
05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology (DIP)

UniBE Contributor:

Müller, Norbert, Müller, Heinz Joachim


600 Technology > 630 Agriculture
500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology




Springer Verlag




Norbert Müller

Date Deposited:

21 Jul 2017 09:52

Last Modified:

02 Mar 2023 23:29

Publisher DOI:



Actions (login required)

Edit item Edit item
Provide Feedback