Underreported and taxonomically problematic: Characterization of sanguinicolid larvae from freshwater limpets (Burnupiidae), with comments on the phylogeny and intermediate hosts of sanguinicolids

James Omondi Outa, Annemariè Avenant-Oldewage

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Blood flukes of freshwater fish are understudied worldwide. Consequently, genetic information and data on their intramolluscan stages are scarce. In the current study, freshwater limpets of the genus Burnupia (Burnupiidae) from South Africa were examined for digeneans. Of 1645 specimens, 3.10% were infected by Sanguinicolidae larvae. Four sanguinicolids were distinguished by body size, number of penetration glands, tegumental spines' patterns and relative sizes of the finfolds on the body and furcae. Analyses of 28S, 18S and ITS rDNA sequences showed that the morphotypes were distinct from each other and from sanguinicolids whose genetic data are available. The present study is the first genetic characterization of sanguinicolids from Africa. Phylogenetic reconstruction revealed that the present species clustered with a sanguinicolid from Poland and were sister to Sanguinicola and Pseudosanguinicola from Russia and USA, respectively. The results indicate that the current species represent an unknown genus. What is more, blood fluke sequences from East Africa (presumed to be sanguinicolids), were distant from Sanguinicolidae and showed a closer relationship with acipensericolids from the USA. Freshwater fish blood flukes seem to be more diverse than previously recorded and use species of at least 13 gastropod families as intermediate hosts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)108-124
Number of pages17
JournalParasitology
Volume151
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 29 Jan 2024

Keywords

  • Burnupia
  • Crocodile River
  • Vaal River
  • biodiversity
  • blood flukes
  • brevifurcate cercaria
  • lophocercous-apharyngeate
  • rDNA sequences
  • scanning electron microscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Parasitology

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