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MOLECULAR ASSESSMENT OF APICOMPLEXAN PARASITES IN THE SNAKE PSAMMOPHIS FROM NORTH AFRICA: DO MULTIPLE PARASITE LINEAGES REFLECT THE FINAL VERTEBRATE HOST DIET?
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  23537006     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
Abstract/OtherAbstract:
Abstract The Apicomplexa are intracellular pathogens of animals, with the Coccidia being the largest group. Among these are the hemogregarines, which include some of the most common hemoparasites found in reptiles. Several studies have reported a possible pattern of prey-predator transmission for some of these parasites. Snakes from the Mediterranean region have been found to be parasitized with Hepatozoon spp. similar to those in lacertids and gekkonids, supporting the prey-predator transmission hypothesis. Here we analyzed specimens of the saurophagous genus Psammophis from North Africa, an ecologically different region. Through molecular analysis of tissue samples we detected 3 different apicomplexan parasites: Caryospora, Sarcocystis and Hepatozoon. Caryospora was detected in a Forskål's sand snake P. schokari from Algeria, constituting the first time these parasites have been detected from a tissue sample through molecular screening. The obtained Sarcocystis phylogeny does not reflect the relationships of their final hosts, with the parasites identified from snakes forming at least 3 unrelated groups, indicating that it is still premature to predict definitive host based on the phylogeny of these parasites. Three unrelated lineages of Hepatozoon parasites were identified in Psammophis, each closely related to lineages previously identified from different lizard groups, on which these snakes feed. This once again indicates that diet might be a key element in transmission, at least for Hepatozoon species of saurophagous snakes.
Authors:
Beatriz Tomé; João P M C Maia; David James Harris
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2013-3-28
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Journal of parasitology     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1937-2345     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Parasitol.     Publication Date:  2013 Mar 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2013-3-29     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7803124     Medline TA:  J Parasitol     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
Affiliation:
a CIBIO, Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos, CIBIO-UP, Centro de Investigação em Biodiversidade e Recursos Genéticos, Universidade do Porto.Departamento de Biologia, Faculdade de Ciências, Universidade do Porto.
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