Key Difference – E. histolytica vs E. coli
Entamoeba species are eukaryotic single celled protozoans which consist of both pathogenic and nonpathogenic forms. Most often they are the indicators of gastrointestinal disorders such as food poisoning caused by the consumption of contaminated food and beverages. Entamoeba species can be isolated from stool samples and would lead to fecal contamination of water ways; thus it acts as an indicator of fecal pollution. There are many species of Entamoeba; pathogenic forms, Entamoeba histolytica or E. histolytica, is the most studied species out of them since it is a common contaminant that causes Amoebiosis, a food borne illness. Entamoeba coli or E. coli, in contrast, is a nonpathogenic form of Entamoeba which is also isolated from stool samples and act as fecal contaminants and indicators of pollution, but not well studied as E. histolytica. This is the key difference between E. histolytica and E. coli is that E. histolytica is a pathogenic form of Entamoeba whereas E. coli is a non pathogenic form.
1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is E. histolytica
3. What is E. coli
4. Similarities Between E. histolytica and E. coli
5. Side by Side Comparison – E. histolytica vs E. coli in Tabular Form
What is E. histolytica?
E. histolytica is a pathogenic protozoan responsible for Amoebiosis in humans, which is caused by ingesting E. histolytica contaminated foods or beverages. They are anaerobic in nature and do not require oxygen for their survival; thus mitochondria are not present. The endoplasm constitutes of a prominent nucleus which has a central karyosome and a lining of chromatin in the nuclear membrane. E. histolytica depends on other bacteria for its nutrient requirements; hence their storage granules contain bacteria or cells such as red blood cells.
E. histolytica has a simple life cycle, and exist in two main forms; the trophozoite stage and the cyst stage. The trophozoite stage is the active stage whereas the cyst stage is the resistant and dormant stage which has the ability to survive for long periods of time.
The protozoan enters the body via the fecal oral route and stabilizes itself in the gastro intestinal tract, mainly along the small intestine. They are believed to alter to natural microbiome of the gut and disrupt the intestinal cells, thereby affecting the process of absorption, leading to infections depicting symptoms such as diarrhea. This infection leads to lesions in the small intestine and upon prolonged exposure if the protozoan manages to escape to the circulatory system it can cause lethal effects.
What is E. coli?
Entamoeba coli or E. coli is a nonpathogenic form of Entamoeba protozoa found mainly in the large intestine. These species also enters the host system via the oral fecal route and are readily passed through stools if ingested. It is distributed in any polluted water way and also acts as an indicator of pollution.
The endoplasm constitutes of a prominent nucleus which has a central karyosome and the chromatin is clumped and unevenly distributed in the nucleus. The cysts are capable of residing for a longer period, but the trophozoite is readily passed via stools.
What are the Similarities Between E. histolytica and E coli?
- histolytica and E coli belong to the genus Entamoeba.
- Both are eukaryotic single celled organisms.
- Both organisms exist in two forms; trophozoite and cyst.
- Both are anaerobic.
- Both organisms contain a central nucleus with a prominent karyosome.
- Both contain storage food granules in the cytoplasm.
- Mode of entry of both types is fecal-oral route.
- Both are indicators of fecal contamination.
What is the Difference Between E. histolytica and E. coli?
E. histolytica vs E. coli
|E. histolytica is a pathogenic form of Entamoeba protozoan responsible for causing Amoebiosis.||E. coli is non-pathogenic form of Entamoeba.|
|Chromatin is placed like a thin thread along the nuclear membrane of E. histolytica.||Chromatin is clumped and distributed in the nucleus of E. coli.|
|Visibility of Nucleus|
|The nucleus of E. histolytica is only visible when stained.||The nucleus of E. coli is visible under unstained condition.|
|E. histolytica is found in the small intestine.||E. coli is found in the large intestine.|
|Pseudopedia for Locomotion|
|Pseudopodia are present in E. histolytica.||Pseudopodia are absent in E. coli.|
|E. histolytica is actively motile.||E. coli is sluggishly motile.|
Summary – E. histolytica vs E. coli
Entamoeba species, which possess a life cycle that alternates between the trophozoite stage and the cystic stage, can be either parasitic or non-parasitic. E. histolytica is the parasitic form which causes the food borne disease Amoebiosis which can be lethal upon the protozoan entering the circulatory system, whereas, E coli the non-parasitic form is excreted via stools and can live as commensals in the large intestine. This is the difference between E. histolytica and E. coli. Both these species act as pollution indicators and used to determine fecal contamination of water ways.
Download PDF Version of E. histolytica vs E. coli
You can download PDF version of this article and use it for offline purposes as per citation notes. Please download PDF version here Difference Between E histolytica and E coli.
1. “Basic Information on Entamoeba.” Entamoeba Basics, Available here. Accessed 18 Aug. 2017.
2. Sodeman, William A., and Jr. “Intestinal Protozoa: Amebas.” Medical Microbiology. 4th edition., U.S. National Library of Medicine, 1 Jan. 1996. Available here. Accessed 18 Aug. 2017.
1. “Entamoeba histolytica 01” By CDC/ Dr. George Healy – from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Public Health Image Library (PHIL), with identification number #1474. (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Entamoeba coli 01” By U.S.A – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Entamoeba_coli_01.jpg (Public Domain) via Commons Wikimedia