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Giardia lamblia protozoan. Coloured transmission electron micrograph (TEM) of a Giardia lamblia protozoan cyst (red circle), a parasite that causes the intestinal illness giardiasis. The cyst is the infective form of the parasite and it can survive in the environment outside of the intestine, primarily in faecally contaminated water. If the contaminated water is swallowed, the cyst is carried to the intestine where the cyst transforms into a trophozoite, the second stage of the parasite's life cycle. The trophozoite grows and multiplies in the intestine, causing diarrhoea and cramps. Trophozoites form more cysts, which are passed out of the body in faeces.
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