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Sample records for brasilianum apicomplexa plasmodidae

  1. Time course production of indole alkaloids by an endophytic strain of Penicillium brasilianum cultivated in rice.

    PubMed

    Fill, Taicia Pacheco; Asenha, Heloísa Briganti Rodrigues; Marques, Anna Silvia; Ferreira, Antônio Gilberto; Rodrigues-Fo, Edson

    2013-01-01

    During our studies concerning endophytic fungi, two indole alkaloids were co-produced with verruculogen by Penicillium brasilianum isolated from Melia azedarach (Meliaceae). The compounds were isolated by the use of combined chromatographic procedures and identified by physical methods, mainly 1D- and 2D-NMR experiments. This article also describes the production of verruculogen TR-2, first described for this species of Penicillium, and a verruculogen TR-2C-11 epimer, that is a novel fungal natural product. The kinetic production of verruculogen and verruculogen TR-2 produced by P. brasilianum were evaluated in order to understand the involvement of verruculogen TR-2 in verruculogen biosynthesis. PMID:22757643

  2. Antimicrobial and allelopathic metabolites produced by Penicillium brasilianum.

    PubMed

    Tang, Hao-Yu; Zhang, Qiang; Li, He; Gao, Jin-Ming

    2015-01-01

    Six known compounds, isoroquefortine C (1), griseofulvin (2), ergosterol peroxide (3), 3β-hydroxy-(22E,24R)-ergosta-5,8,22-trien-7-one (4), cerevisterol (5) and (22E,24R)-6β-methoxyergosta-7,22-diene-3β,5α-diol (6), were produced by the fungus Penicillium brasilianum, and their structures were elucidated by spectroscopic methods. This is the first report on isoroquefortine C as naturally occurring compound. Their bioactivities against five phytopathogenic fungi (Gibeberalla saubinetti, Fusarium solani, Botrytis cinerea, Colletotrichum gloeosporioides and Alternaria solani) and four pathogenic bacteria (Escherichia coli, Bacillus subtilis, Staphyloccocus aureus and Bacillus cereus), as well as allelopathic activities on Raphanus sativus were tested. Compound 1 exhibited a remarkable antifungal activity with minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of 12.5 μM against C. gloeosporioides, in comparison with positive control hymexazol (MIC 25 μM). Compound 2 displayed strong inhibitory effects on the growth of A. solani and S. aureus with MIC of 3.13 μM for each. Compounds 2 and 3 displayed a significant growth-inhibition activity on R. sativus. PMID:25103127

  3. Discovery of Key Dioxygenases that Diverged the Paraherquonin and Acetoxydehydroaustin Pathways in Penicillium brasilianum.

    PubMed

    Matsuda, Yudai; Iwabuchi, Taiki; Fujimoto, Takayuki; Awakawa, Takayoshi; Nakashima, Yu; Mori, Takahiro; Zhang, Huiping; Hayashi, Fumiaki; Abe, Ikuro

    2016-09-28

    Paraherquonin (1), a fungal meroterpenoid produced by Penicillium brasilianum NBRC 6234, possesses a unique, highly congested hexacyclic molecular architecture. Here we identified the biosynthetic gene cluster of 1 (the prh cluster) and elucidated the pathway up to berkeleydione (2), which serves as the key intermediate for the biosynthesis of 1 as well as many other meroterpenoids. Interestingly, the nonheme iron and α-ketoglutarate-dependent dioxygenase PrhA constructs the cycloheptadiene moiety to afford 2 from preaustinoid A1 (6), probably via the homoallyl-homoallyl radical rearrangement. Additionally, another fungal strain, P. brasilianum MG11, which produces acetoxydehydroaustin instead of 1, was found to have a gene cluster nearly identical to the prh cluster. The dioxygenase encoded by the cluster shares 92% sequence identity with PrhA, and also accepts 6 but produces preaustinoid A3 (17) with a spiro-lactone system, generating a diverging point for the two different meroterpenoid pathways in the same species.

  4. Natural infection of Plasmodium brasilianum in humans: Man and monkey share quartan malaria parasites in the Venezuelan Amazon

    PubMed Central

    Lalremruata, Albert; Magris, Magda; Vivas-Martínez, Sarai; Koehler, Maike; Esen, Meral; Kempaiah, Prakasha; Jeyaraj, Sankarganesh; Perkins, Douglas Jay; Mordmüller, Benjamin; Metzger, Wolfram G.

    2015-01-01

    Background The quartan malaria parasite Plasmodium malariae is the widest spread and best adapted human malaria parasite. The simian Plasmodium brasilianum causes quartan fever in New World monkeys and resembles P. malariae morphologically. Since the genetics of the two parasites are nearly identical, differing only in a range of mutations expected within a species, it has long been speculated that the two are the same. However, no naturally acquired infection with parasites termed as P. brasilianum has been found in humans until now. Methods We investigated malaria cases from remote Yanomami indigenous communities of the Venezuelan Amazon and analyzed the genes coding for the circumsporozoite protein (CSP) and the small subunit of ribosomes (18S) by species-specific PCR and capillary based-DNA sequencing. Findings Based on 18S rRNA gene sequencing, we identified 12 patients harboring malaria parasites which were 100% identical with P. brasilianum isolated from the monkey, Alouatta seniculus. Translated amino acid sequences of the CS protein gene showed identical immunodominant repeat units between quartan malaria parasites isolated from both humans and monkeys. Interpretation This study reports, for the first time, naturally acquired infections in humans with parasites termed as P. brasilianum. We conclude that quartan malaria parasites are easily exchanged between humans and monkeys in Latin America. We hypothesize a lack of host specificity in mammalian hosts and consider quartan malaria to be a true anthropozoonosis. Since the name P. brasilianum suggests a malaria species distinct from P. malariae, we propose that P. brasilianum should have a nomenclatorial revision in case further research confirms our findings. The expansive reservoir of mammalian hosts discriminates quartan malaria from other Plasmodium spp. and requires particular research efforts. PMID:26501116

  5. Membrane-associated antigens of blood stages of Plasmodium, brasilianum, a quartan malaria parasite.

    PubMed Central

    Cochrane, A H; Matsumoto, Y; Kamboj, K K; Maracic, M; Nussenzweig, R S; Aikawa, M

    1988-01-01

    The localization of Plasmodium brasilianum-derived antigens in short and long clefts within the cytoplasm of infected erythrocytes and in association with knobs of the host cell membrane was demonstrated by immunoelectron microscopy with monoclonal antibodies. Our results document that malaria-induced short and long clefts, previously distinguishable only by morphology, differ also in antigenic composition. Another parasite-derived antigen was found to be associated with the parasitophorous vacuole space in schizonts. In segmenters, this antigen was present in large amounts between merozoites and in the cytoplasm of infected cells. These antigens were characterized by biosynthetic labeling and gel electrophoresis. Images PMID:3397184

  6. Production and partial characterization of arabinoxylan-degrading enzymes by Penicillium brasilianum under solid-state fermentation.

    PubMed

    Panagiotou, Gianni; Granouillet, Pierre; Olsson, Lisbeth

    2006-10-01

    The production of a battery of arabinoxylan-degrading enzymes by the fungus Penicillium brasilianum grown on brewer's spent grain (BSG) under solid-state fermentation was investigated. Initial moisture content, initial pH, temperature, and nitrogen source content were optimized to achieve maximum production of feruloyl esterase, xylanase, and alpha-L: -arabinofuranosidase. Under the optimum growth conditions (80% moisture, pH 6, 26.5 degrees C, and 5 g/l nitrogen source), the maximum level of feruloyl esterase (1,542 mU/g BSG) was found after 196 h, whereas xylanase (709 U/g BSG) and ArabF activity (3,567 mU/g BSG) were maximal after 108 h and 96 h, respectively. Based on substrate utilization data, the feruloyl esterases produced by P. brasilianum was anticipated to subclass B. A crude enzyme (CE) preparation from P. brasilianum culture grown on BSG was tested for the release of hydroxycinnamic acids and pentoses from BSG. The P. brasilianum CE produced in this work contains a balance of cell wall-modifying enzymes capable of degrading arabinoxylan of BSG by more than 40%.

  7. Penicillium brasilianum as an enzyme factory; the essential role of feruloyl esterases for the hydrolysis of the plant cell wall.

    PubMed

    Panagiotou, Gianni; Olavarria, Reyes; Olsson, Lisbeth

    2007-06-30

    The production of arabinoxylan-degrading enzymes by the fungus Penicillium brasilianum, grown on different carbon and nitrogen sources as well as different environmental conditions was investigated. Highest feruloyl esterase (225 mU/ml) and alpha-L-arabinofuranosidase (211 mU/ml) activities were obtained when P. brasilianum was grown on sugar beet pulp, whereas maximum xylanase (17 U/ml) activity was found during growth on oat spelt xylan. Yeast extract was the preferable nitrogen source for the production of all the three enzymes. Further optimization of the production of the crude enzyme mixture was examined by experimental design using a D-optimal quadratic model. Investigation of the microbial regulation of enzyme production showed that the presence of free ferulic acid further stimulated the production and pointing to that the fungal regulatory mechanism involved a coordinated production and secretion of feruloyl esterase, xylanase and alpha-L-arabinofuranosidase. Since agroindustrial by-products are a potential source of phenolic acids, crude enzyme mixtures of P. brasilianum were tested for their hydrolysis abilities against eight complex or model substrates. While total release of phenolic acids and pentoses was not observed, the synergistic enhancement of hydrolysis in the presence of feruloyl esterase was clearly demonstrated.

  8. Organochlorine Pesticides in the Ferruginous Pygmy Owl (Glaucidium brasilianum) in Chiapas, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Arrona-Rivera, Alicia E; Enríquez, Paula L; García-Feria, Luis M; Orellana, Sergio Alvarado; von Osten, Jaime Rendón

    2016-09-01

    Concentrations of organochlorine pesticides were quantified in samples of feathers (n = 17) and blood (n = 15) of the ferruginous pygmy owl (Glaucidium brasilianum). The individuals were captured near the Protected Natural Area Cerro Sonsonate, Chiapas, Mexico, between February and June 2014. In both tissues, pesticides belonging to seven organochlorine chemical families were detected. However, the organochlorine pesticide concentrations differed between feathers and blood. The highest concentrations of hexachlorocyclohexanes were found in feathers (0.63 ± 0.89 μg/g), whereas the highest concentrations of ΣDrines were found in blood (0.31 ± 0.47 μg/mL). By using the summed concentrations for each of the seven families of pesticides found in feathers, we did not find any significant correlation between the pesticides and pectoral muscle or body weight (p > 0.15). The ΣDDT group was the only pesticide family that showed a positive correlation with owl body weight (r = 0.60, p = 0.05); the concentrations of these pesticides were also high in feather and blood tissues (r = 0.87, p = 0.02). Our results confirm that ferruginous pygmy owls in the study area are exposed to these pesticides.

  9. Organochlorine Pesticides in the Ferruginous Pygmy Owl (Glaucidium brasilianum) in Chiapas, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Arrona-Rivera, Alicia E; Enríquez, Paula L; García-Feria, Luis M; Orellana, Sergio Alvarado; von Osten, Jaime Rendón

    2016-09-01

    Concentrations of organochlorine pesticides were quantified in samples of feathers (n = 17) and blood (n = 15) of the ferruginous pygmy owl (Glaucidium brasilianum). The individuals were captured near the Protected Natural Area Cerro Sonsonate, Chiapas, Mexico, between February and June 2014. In both tissues, pesticides belonging to seven organochlorine chemical families were detected. However, the organochlorine pesticide concentrations differed between feathers and blood. The highest concentrations of hexachlorocyclohexanes were found in feathers (0.63 ± 0.89 μg/g), whereas the highest concentrations of ΣDrines were found in blood (0.31 ± 0.47 μg/mL). By using the summed concentrations for each of the seven families of pesticides found in feathers, we did not find any significant correlation between the pesticides and pectoral muscle or body weight (p > 0.15). The ΣDDT group was the only pesticide family that showed a positive correlation with owl body weight (r = 0.60, p = 0.05); the concentrations of these pesticides were also high in feather and blood tissues (r = 0.87, p = 0.02). Our results confirm that ferruginous pygmy owls in the study area are exposed to these pesticides. PMID:27377751

  10. Particularities of mitochondrial structure in parasitic protists (Apicomplexa and Kinetoplastida).

    PubMed

    de Souza, Wanderley; Attias, Márcia; Rodrigues, Juliany C F

    2009-10-01

    Without mitochondria, eukaryotic cells would depend entirely on anaerobic glycolysis for ATP generation. This also holds true for protists, both free-living and parasitic. Parasitic protists include agents of human and animal diseases that have a huge impact on world populations. In the phylum Apicomplexa, several species of Plasmodium cause malaria, whereas Toxoplasma gondii is a cosmopolite parasite found on all continents. Flagellates of the order Kinetoplastida include the genera Leishmania and Trypanosoma causative agents of human leishmaniasis and (depending on the species) African trypanosomiasis and Chagas disease. Although clearly distinct in many aspects, the members of these two groups bear a single and usually well developed mitochondrion. The single mitochondrion of Apicomplexa has a dense matrix and many cristae with a circular profile. The organelle is even more peculiar in the order Kinetoplastida, exhibiting a condensed network of DNA at a specific position, always close to the flagellar basal body. This arrangement is known as Kinetoplast and the name of the order derived from it. Kinetoplastids also bear glycosomes, peroxisomes that concentrate enzymes of the glycolytic cycle. Mitochondrial volume and activity is maximum when glycosomal is low and vice versa. In both Apicomplexa and trypanosomatids, mitochondria show particularities that are absent in other eukaryotic organisms. These peculiar features make them an attractive target for therapeutic drugs for the diseases they cause. PMID:19379828

  11. Particularities of mitochondrial structure in parasitic protists (Apicomplexa and Kinetoplastida).

    PubMed

    de Souza, Wanderley; Attias, Márcia; Rodrigues, Juliany C F

    2009-10-01

    Without mitochondria, eukaryotic cells would depend entirely on anaerobic glycolysis for ATP generation. This also holds true for protists, both free-living and parasitic. Parasitic protists include agents of human and animal diseases that have a huge impact on world populations. In the phylum Apicomplexa, several species of Plasmodium cause malaria, whereas Toxoplasma gondii is a cosmopolite parasite found on all continents. Flagellates of the order Kinetoplastida include the genera Leishmania and Trypanosoma causative agents of human leishmaniasis and (depending on the species) African trypanosomiasis and Chagas disease. Although clearly distinct in many aspects, the members of these two groups bear a single and usually well developed mitochondrion. The single mitochondrion of Apicomplexa has a dense matrix and many cristae with a circular profile. The organelle is even more peculiar in the order Kinetoplastida, exhibiting a condensed network of DNA at a specific position, always close to the flagellar basal body. This arrangement is known as Kinetoplast and the name of the order derived from it. Kinetoplastids also bear glycosomes, peroxisomes that concentrate enzymes of the glycolytic cycle. Mitochondrial volume and activity is maximum when glycosomal is low and vice versa. In both Apicomplexa and trypanosomatids, mitochondria show particularities that are absent in other eukaryotic organisms. These peculiar features make them an attractive target for therapeutic drugs for the diseases they cause.

  12. Comparative Analysis of Apicomplexa and Genomic Diversity in Eukaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Templeton, Thomas J.; Iyer, Lakshminarayan M.; Anantharaman, Vivek; Enomoto, Shinichiro; Abrahante, Juan E.; Subramanian, G.M.; Hoffman, Stephen L.; Abrahamsen, Mitchell S.; Aravind, L.

    2004-01-01

    The apicomplexans Plasmodium and Cryptosporidium have developed distinctive adaptations via lineage-specific gene loss and gene innovation in the process of diverging from a common parasitic ancestor. The two lineages have acquired distinct but overlapping sets of surface protein adhesion domains typical of animal proteins, but in no case do they share multidomain architectures identical to animals. Cryptosporidium, but not Plasmodium, possesses an animal-type O-linked glycosylation pathway, along with >30 predicted surface proteins having mucin-like segments. The two parasites have notable qualitative differences in conserved protein architectures associated with chromatin dynamics and transcription. Cryptosporidium shows considerable reduction in the number of introns and a concomitant loss of spliceosomal machinery components. We also describe additional molecular characteristics distinguishing Apicomplexa from other eukaryotes for which complete genome sequences are available. PMID:15342554

  13. Lateral Gene Transfer of Family A DNA Polymerases between Thermophilic Viruses, Aquificae, and Apicomplexa

    PubMed Central

    Schoenfeld, Thomas W.; Murugapiran, Senthil K.; Dodsworth, Jeremy A.; Floyd, Sally; Lodes, Michael; Mead, David A.; Hedlund, Brian P.

    2013-01-01

    Bioinformatics and functional screens identified a group of Family A-type DNA Polymerase (polA) genes encoded by viruses inhabiting circumneutral and alkaline hot springs in Yellowstone National Park and the US Great Basin. The proteins encoded by these viral polA genes (PolAs) shared no significant sequence similarity with any known viral proteins but were remarkably similar to PolAs encoded by two of three families of the bacterial phylum Aquificae and by several apicoplast-targeted PolA-like proteins found in the eukaryotic phylum Apicomplexa, which includes the obligate parasites Plasmodium, Babesia, and Toxoplasma. The viral gene products share signature elements previously associated only with Aquificae and Apicomplexa PolA-like proteins and were similar to proteins encoded by prophage elements of a variety of otherwise unrelated Bacteria, each of which additionally encoded a prototypical bacterial PolA. Unique among known viral DNA polymerases, the viral PolA proteins of this study share with the Apicomplexa proteins large amino-terminal domains with putative helicase/primase elements but low primary sequence similarity. The genomic context and distribution, phylogeny, and biochemistry of these PolA proteins suggest that thermophilic viruses transferred polA genes to the Apicomplexa, likely through secondary endosymbiosis of a virus-infected proto-apicoplast, and to the common ancestor of two of three Aquificae families, where they displaced the orthologous cellular polA gene. On the basis of biochemical activity, gene structure, and sequence similarity, we speculate that the xenologous viral-type polA genes may have functions associated with diversity-generating recombination in both Bacteria and Apicomplexa. PMID:23608703

  14. Evolutionary origin of Plasmodium and other Apicomplexa based on rRNA genes.

    PubMed Central

    Escalante, A A; Ayala, F J

    1995-01-01

    We have explored the evolutionary history of the Apicomplexa and two related protistan phyla, Dinozoa and Ciliophora, by comparing the nucleotide sequences of small subunit ribosomal RNA genes. We conclude that the Plasmodium lineage, to which the malarial parasites belong, diverged from other apicomplexan lineages (piroplasmids and coccidians) several hundred million years ago, perhaps even before the Cambrian. The Plasmodium radiation, which gave rise to several species parasitic to humans, occurred approximately 129 million years ago; Plasmodium parasitism of humans has independently arisen several times. The origin of apicomplexans (Plasmodium), dinoflagellates, and ciliates may be > 1 billion years old, perhaps older than the three multicellular kingdoms of animals, plants, and fungi. Digenetic parasitism independently evolved several times in the Apicomplexa. PMID:7597031

  15. Apicomplexa-specific tRip facilitates import of exogenous tRNAs into malaria parasites

    PubMed Central

    Bour, Tania; Mahmoudi, Nassira; Kapps, Delphine; Thiberge, Sabine; Bargieri, Daniel; Ménard, Robert; Frugier, Magali

    2016-01-01

    The malaria-causing Plasmodium parasites are transmitted to vertebrates by mosquitoes. To support their growth and replication, these intracellular parasites, which belong to the phylum Apicomplexa, have developed mechanisms to exploit their hosts. These mechanisms include expropriation of small metabolites from infected host cells, such as purine nucleotides and amino acids. Heretofore, no evidence suggested that transfer RNAs (tRNAs) could also be exploited. We identified an unusual gene in Apicomplexa with a coding sequence for membrane-docking and structure-specific tRNA binding. This Apicomplexa protein—designated tRip (tRNA import protein)—is anchored to the parasite plasma membrane and directs import of exogenous tRNAs. In the absence of tRip, the fitness of the parasite stage that multiplies in the blood is significantly reduced, indicating that the parasite may need host tRNAs to sustain its own translation and/or as regulatory RNAs. Plasmodium is thus the first example, to our knowledge, of a cell importing exogenous tRNAs, suggesting a remarkable adaptation of this parasite to extend its reach into host cell biology. PMID:27071116

  16. Evolutionary relationships of avian Eimeria species among other Apicomplexan protozoa: monophyly of the apicomplexa is supported.

    PubMed

    Barta, J R; Jenkins, M C; Danforth, H D

    1991-05-01

    Direct, reverse transcriptase-mediated, partial sequencing of the small-subunit (16S-like) ribosomal RNA (srRNA) of Eimeria tenella and E. acervulina was performed. Sequences were aligned by eye with six previously published, partial or complete srRNA sequences of apicomplexan protists (Plasmodium berghei, Theileria annulata, Cryptosporidium sp., Toxoplasma gondii, Sarcocystis muris, and S. gigantea). Six eukaryotic protists (a slime mold, a yeast, two dinoflagellates, and two ciliates) acted as an outgroup for a parsimony-based phylogenetic analysis (PAUP Ver. 3.0). The 188 phylogenetically informative sites (i.e., those positions that neither were unvaried nor had only autapomorphic substitutions) supported a single tree topology 481 steps in length with a consistency index of 0.65 in which the monophyly of the Apicomplexa was supported. The two Eimeria species and S. muris, S. gigantea, and T. gondii formed a pair of monophyletic groups that were sister groups. The two Sarcocystis species were not hypothesized to be sister taxa. The genera Plasmodium and Cryptosporidium were hypothesized to form the sister group to these five coccidia and T. annulata. A priori data-editing techniques that deleted "variable" positions prior to analysis failed to recognize the monophyly of the Apicomplexa when the same parsimony-based tree-building algorithm was used. Inability of the outgroup taxa to root the well-supported ingroup tree (Apicomplexa) at a unique site when these taxa were used individually for this purpose reinforces the need for an appropriate, multiple-taxon outgroup in such analyses.

  17. Dense granules: are they key organelles to help understand the parasitophorous vacuole of all apicomplexa parasites?

    PubMed

    Mercier, Corinne; Adjogble, Koku D Z; Däubener, Walter; Delauw, Marie-France-Cesbron

    2005-07-01

    Together with micronemes and rhoptries, dense granules are specialised secretory organelles of Apicomplexa parasites. Among Apicomplexa, Plasmodium represents a model of parasites propagated by way of an insect vector, whereas Toxoplasma is a model of food borne protozoa forming cysts. Through comparison of both models, this review summarises data accumulated over recent years on alternative strategies chosen by these parasites to develop within a parasitophorous vacuole and explores the role of dense granules in this process. One of the characteristics of the Plasmodium erythrocyte stages is to export numerous parasite proteins into both the host cell cytoplasm and/or plasma membrane via the vacuole used as a step trafficking compartment. Whether this feature can be correlated to few storage granules and a restricted number of dense granule proteins, is not yet clear. By contrast, the Toxoplasma developing vacuole is decorated by abundantly expressed dense granule proteins and is characterised by a network of membranous nanotubes. Although the exact function of most of these proteins remains currently unknown, recent data suggest that some of these dense granule proteins could be involved in building the intravacuolar membranous network. Conserved expression of the Toxoplasma dense granule proteins throughout most of the parasite stages suggests that they could also be key elements of the cyst formation.

  18. Ultrastructure of Selenidium pendula, the Type Species of Archigregarines, and Phylogenetic Relations to Other Marine Apicomplexa.

    PubMed

    Schrével, Joseph; Valigurová, Andrea; Prensier, Gérard; Chambouvet, Aurélie; Florent, Isabelle; Guillou, Laure

    2016-08-01

    Archigregarines, an early branching lineage within Apicomplexa, are a poorly-known group of invertebrate parasites. By their phylogenetic position, archigregarines are an important lineage to understand the functional transition that occurred between free-living flagellated predators to obligatory parasites in Apicomplexa. In this study, we provide new ultrastructural data and phylogenies based on SSU rDNA sequences using the type species of archigregarines, the Selenidiidae Selenidium pendulaGiard, 1884. We describe for the first time the syzygy and early gamogony at the ultrastructural level, revealing a characteristic nuclear multiplication with centrocones, cryptomitosis, filamentous network of chromatin, a cyst wall secretion and a 9+0 flagellar axoneme of the male gamete. S. pendula belongs to a monophyletic lineage that includes several other related species, all infecting Sedentaria Polychaeta (Spionidae, Sabellaridae, Sabellidae and Cirratulidae). All of these Selenidium species exhibit similar biological characters: a cell cortex with the plasma membrane - inner membrane complex - subpellicular microtubule sets, an apical complex with the conoid, numerous rhoptries and micronemes, a myzocytosis with large food vacuoles, a nuclear multiplication during syzygy and young gamonts. Two other distantly related Selenidium-like lineages infect Terebellidae and Sipunculida, underlying the ability of archigregarines to parasite a wide range of marine hosts. PMID:27423403

  19. Isospora dromaii n. sp. (Apicomplexa, Eimeriidae) isolated from emus, Dromaius novaehollandiae (Casuariiformes, Casuariidae).

    PubMed

    dos Santos Teixeira, Carina; Gallo, Samira Salim Mello; Ederli, Nicole Brand; Berto, Bruno Pereira; de Oliveira, Francisco Carlos Rodrigues

    2014-11-01

    A new species of Coccidia (Protozoa: Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) isolated from emus, Dromaius novaehollandiae, which was observed in Brazil is described and named. Oocysts of Isospora dromaii n. sp. are subspheroidal to ovoid in shape, measure 21.6 × 19.8 μm, and have a double and smooth wall thickness of approximately 1.4 μm. In this species, micropyle, oocyst residuum, and polar granules are absent. The sporocysts are slightly ovoid in shape and measure 13.7 × 10.0 μm. Nipple-like Stieda body and prominent sub-Stieda body are present. The sporocyst residuum is composed of small dispersed granules of varying sizes. The sporozoites are characterized by an oblong refractile body and one centrally located nucleus. This is the first description of isosporid coccidia infecting birds of the family Dromaiidae. PMID:25195056

  20. Attenuated reproduction of Strombus gigas by an Apicomplexa: Emeriidae-like parasite in the digestive gland.

    PubMed

    Baqueiro Cardenas, Erick; Montero, Jorge; Frenkiel, Liliane; Aldana Aranda, Dalila

    2012-07-01

    An intense and generalized sporozoan infection was detected in every population of the queen conch, Strombus gigas through the Caribbean. In this contribution we establish the relationship between occurrences of an Apicomplexa: Emeriidae-like organism and reproductive activity at San Andres archipelago, Colombia. Occurrence of the parasites was estimated counting the feeding stage Merozoites and cysts Sporozoites at 40× magnification. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling analysis (NMDS) was made to correlate the parasites stages abundance with frequency of the reproductive stages. Gametogenesis and spawning were always low coinciding with high numbers of Merozoites, a positive correlation was established between parasite abundance with reabsorption and undifferentiated stages, and negative correlation was observed between parasite abundance with maturity and spawning stages. The nonmetric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) shows that gametogenesis, maturity and spawning increase as the number of parasites decrease, factor that could be threatening reproduction of S. gigas through the Caribbean.

  1. Attenuated reproduction of Strombus gigas by an Apicomplexa: Emeriidae-like parasite in the digestive gland.

    PubMed

    Baqueiro Cardenas, Erick; Montero, Jorge; Frenkiel, Liliane; Aldana Aranda, Dalila

    2012-07-01

    An intense and generalized sporozoan infection was detected in every population of the queen conch, Strombus gigas through the Caribbean. In this contribution we establish the relationship between occurrences of an Apicomplexa: Emeriidae-like organism and reproductive activity at San Andres archipelago, Colombia. Occurrence of the parasites was estimated counting the feeding stage Merozoites and cysts Sporozoites at 40× magnification. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling analysis (NMDS) was made to correlate the parasites stages abundance with frequency of the reproductive stages. Gametogenesis and spawning were always low coinciding with high numbers of Merozoites, a positive correlation was established between parasite abundance with reabsorption and undifferentiated stages, and negative correlation was observed between parasite abundance with maturity and spawning stages. The nonmetric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) shows that gametogenesis, maturity and spawning increase as the number of parasites decrease, factor that could be threatening reproduction of S. gigas through the Caribbean. PMID:22484565

  2. Calcium signaling in closely related protozoan groups (Alveolata): non-parasitic ciliates (Paramecium, Tetrahymena) vs. parasitic Apicomplexa (Plasmodium, Toxoplasma).

    PubMed

    Plattner, H; Sehring, I M; Mohamed, I K; Miranda, K; De Souza, W; Billington, R; Genazzani, A; Ladenburger, E-M

    2012-05-01

    The importance of Ca2+-signaling for many subcellular processes is well established in higher eukaryotes, whereas information about protozoa is restricted. Recent genome analyses have stimulated such work also with Alveolates, such as ciliates (Paramecium, Tetrahymena) and their pathogenic close relatives, the Apicomplexa (Plasmodium, Toxoplasma). Here we compare Ca2+ signaling in the two closely related groups. Acidic Ca2+ stores have been characterized in detail in Apicomplexa, but hardly in ciliates. Two-pore channels engaged in Ca2+-release from acidic stores in higher eukaryotes have not been stingently characterized in either group. Both groups are endowed with plasma membrane- and endoplasmic reticulum-type Ca2+-ATPases (PMCA, SERCA), respectively. Only recently was it possible to identify in Paramecium a number of homologs of ryanodine and inositol 1,3,4-trisphosphate receptors (RyR, IP3R) and to localize them to widely different organelles participating in vesicle trafficking. For Apicomplexa, physiological experiments suggest the presence of related channels although their identity remains elusive. In Paramecium, IP3Rs are constitutively active in the contractile vacuole complex; RyR-related channels in alveolar sacs are activated during exocytosis stimulation, whereas in the parasites the homologous structure (inner membrane complex) may no longer function as a Ca2+ store. Scrutinized comparison of the two closely related protozoan phyla may stimulate further work and elucidate adaptation to parasitic life. See also "Conclusions" section.

  3. Apoptosis of Ascogregarina taiwanensis (Apicomplexa: Lecudinidae), which failed to migrate within its natural host.

    PubMed

    Chen, Wei-June; Huang, Ching-Gi; Fan-Chiang, Mei-Huei; Liu, Yu-Han; Lee, Yi-Feng

    2013-01-15

    Sexual reproduction of Ascogregarina taiwanensis (Apicomplexa: Lecudinidae), a parasite specific to the mosquito Aedes albopictus, in Malpighian tubules is initiated by the entry of the trophotozoites developed in the midgut shortly after pupation (usually <5 h). However, only a low proportion of trophozoites are able to migrate; others end up dying. In this study, we demonstrated that those trophozoites that failed to migrate eventually died of apoptosis. Morphological changes such as shrinkage, chromatin aggregations and formation of blunt ridges on the surface were seen in moribund trophozoites. In addition, DNA fragmentation of trophozoites isolated from the midgut of pupae was demonstrated by the presence of DNA ladders, Annexin V staining and TUNEL assays. Detection of caspase-like activity suggests that apoptosis of those trophozoites may have occurred through a mechanism of an intrinsic or mitochondrial-mediated pathway. Although apoptosis has been observed in various protozoan species, it is not clear how apoptosis in single-celled organisms might result from evolution by natural selection. However, we speculate that apoptosis may regulate the parasite load of A. taiwanensis within its natural mosquito host, leading to an optimized state of the survival rate for both parasite and host.

  4. Occurrence of Apicomplexa-like structures in the digestive gland of Strombus gigas throughout the Caribbean.

    PubMed

    Aranda, Dalila Aldana; Frenkiel, Liliane; Brulé, Thierry; Montero, Jorge; Cárdenas, Erick Baqueiro

    2011-02-01

    The queen conch, Strombus gigas, is a marine resource of ecological and economical importance in the Caribbean region. Given its importance in this region, and the critical status of most populations, the reproductive biology of this species has been studied to support management decisions. It was from these studies that a generalized sporozoan infection was detected. This study describes the geographic distribution of a coccidian (Apicomplexa) parasite infecting the digestive gland of S. gigas throughout the Caribbean. The parasite was present in every location sampled. Based on histological analysis, the parasites from all locations are similar and appear to complete their life cycle within the digestive gland. The highest occurrence of the parasites was registered in samples from Puerto Rico (54 parasites per field) and Martinique (45 parasites per field). The lowest incidence was registered on the Mexican coast of Yucatan peninsula, at Alacranes and Chinchorro with 17 parasites per field. Data showed significant differences among sites (Kruskal Wallis H=106.957; p ≤ 0.05). The abundance of parasites found in the digestive ducts and in the faeces suggests the liberation of parasites to the environment. A gradual decrease in abundance was found from East to West of the Caribbean sea.

  5. Afternoon shedding of a new species of Isospora (Apicomplexa) in the endangered Regent Honeyeater (Xanthomyza phrygia).

    PubMed

    Morin-Adeline, Victoria; Vogelnest, Larry; Dhand, Navneet K; Shiels, Michael; Angus, Warrick; Šlapeta, Jan

    2011-05-01

    The Regent Honeyeater (Xanthomyza phyrigia) is an endangered Australian bird species. Breeding populations have been established at Australian zoos in support of re-introduction programmes. This species is the host of a new species of Isospora (Apicomplexa). Oocysts are spherical, 25·8 (22·5-28·75) by 23·8 (20-26·25) μm with a colourless to pale yellow smooth wall undergoing rapid exogenous sporulation, 90% sporulated oocysts in 8 h at 20°C. Each oocyst contains 1 polar granule. Sporocysts are ovoid, 18·67 (17-19) by 9·49 (9-10) μm with a flat Stieda body and spherical substieda body devoid of a hyaline body. The asexual stages and sexual phase is within the enterocytes of the duodenum and jejunum. Faeces collected in the morning (AM, n=84) and in the afternoon (PM, n=90) revealed significant diurnal periodicity in oocyst shedding; 21% (18 of 84) of the AM were positive with the mean of 499 oocysts.g-1 compared to the PM with 91% (82 of 90) bird faeces positive with the mean of 129 723 oocysts.g-1. Therefore, parasite checks for these birds should be carried out in the afternoon to obtain an accurate result. The ecological significance of the high parasite burden in captive birds requires further investigation and comparison to the wild counterparts.

  6. Afternoon shedding of a new species of Isospora (Apicomplexa) in the endangered Regent Honeyeater (Xanthomyza phrygia).

    PubMed

    Morin-Adeline, Victoria; Vogelnest, Larry; Dhand, Navneet K; Shiels, Michael; Angus, Warrick; Šlapeta, Jan

    2011-05-01

    The Regent Honeyeater (Xanthomyza phyrigia) is an endangered Australian bird species. Breeding populations have been established at Australian zoos in support of re-introduction programmes. This species is the host of a new species of Isospora (Apicomplexa). Oocysts are spherical, 25·8 (22·5-28·75) by 23·8 (20-26·25) μm with a colourless to pale yellow smooth wall undergoing rapid exogenous sporulation, 90% sporulated oocysts in 8 h at 20°C. Each oocyst contains 1 polar granule. Sporocysts are ovoid, 18·67 (17-19) by 9·49 (9-10) μm with a flat Stieda body and spherical substieda body devoid of a hyaline body. The asexual stages and sexual phase is within the enterocytes of the duodenum and jejunum. Faeces collected in the morning (AM, n=84) and in the afternoon (PM, n=90) revealed significant diurnal periodicity in oocyst shedding; 21% (18 of 84) of the AM were positive with the mean of 499 oocysts.g-1 compared to the PM with 91% (82 of 90) bird faeces positive with the mean of 129 723 oocysts.g-1. Therefore, parasite checks for these birds should be carried out in the afternoon to obtain an accurate result. The ecological significance of the high parasite burden in captive birds requires further investigation and comparison to the wild counterparts. PMID:24650932

  7. Two new species of Caryospora Léger, 1904 (Apicomplexa, Eimeriidae) from accipitrid raptors.

    PubMed

    Volf, J; Koudela, B; Modrý, D

    2000-05-01

    Two new species of Coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) are described from European accipitrid raptors (Falconiformes: Accipitridae). Oöcysts of Carvospora aquilae n. sp. found in faeces of the gold eagle Aquila chrysaetos are subspherical to broad ellipsoidal and measure 43 (40-49) x 37.5 (34-39) microm. Polar granule, oöcyst residuum and micropyle are absent. Each oöcyst contains one spherical to subspherical slightly polygonal sporocyst measuring 23.8 (23-25) x 23.3 (22-25) microm. Stieda and substieda bodies are absent. The sporocyst residuum is composed of numerous small granules less than 0.5 microm in diameter dispersed randomly among the sporozoites. Sporulated oöcysts of Carvospora circi n. sp. from faeces of the marsh harrier Circus aeruginosus are widely oval, measuring 24.5 (23-25) x 21.8 (21-24) microm. A polar granule, oöcyst residuum and micropyle are absent. Each oöcyst contains one spherical to subspherical sporocyst measuring 16.2 (15-17) x 15.6 (15-17) microm. A compact granular, spherical to subspherical sporocyst residuum, 10.4 (10-11) x 8.5 (7-9), was present in 76% of measured sporocysts. In 24% of sporocysts the granules of sporocyst residuum were scattered among the sporozoites. PMID:10803432

  8. Occurrence of Apicomplexa-like structures in the digestive gland of Strombus gigas throughout the Caribbean.

    PubMed

    Aranda, Dalila Aldana; Frenkiel, Liliane; Brulé, Thierry; Montero, Jorge; Cárdenas, Erick Baqueiro

    2011-02-01

    The queen conch, Strombus gigas, is a marine resource of ecological and economical importance in the Caribbean region. Given its importance in this region, and the critical status of most populations, the reproductive biology of this species has been studied to support management decisions. It was from these studies that a generalized sporozoan infection was detected. This study describes the geographic distribution of a coccidian (Apicomplexa) parasite infecting the digestive gland of S. gigas throughout the Caribbean. The parasite was present in every location sampled. Based on histological analysis, the parasites from all locations are similar and appear to complete their life cycle within the digestive gland. The highest occurrence of the parasites was registered in samples from Puerto Rico (54 parasites per field) and Martinique (45 parasites per field). The lowest incidence was registered on the Mexican coast of Yucatan peninsula, at Alacranes and Chinchorro with 17 parasites per field. Data showed significant differences among sites (Kruskal Wallis H=106.957; p ≤ 0.05). The abundance of parasites found in the digestive ducts and in the faeces suggests the liberation of parasites to the environment. A gradual decrease in abundance was found from East to West of the Caribbean sea. PMID:20851703

  9. A new species of Isospora Schneider, 1881 (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from Morafka's desert tortoise Gopherus morafkai (Testudines: Testudinidae).

    PubMed

    Hnida, John A

    2015-11-01

    Isospora gopheri n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) is described from 5 of 28 (18%) Morafka's desert tortoise Gopherus morafkai Murphy, Berry, Edwards, Leviton, Lathrop & Readle, housed by the Phoenix Herpetological Society, Maricopa County, Arizona, USA. Sporulated oöcysts of this new species were spheroidal to subspheroidal, 20-27 × 19-27 (23.0 × 21.7) µm, with a smooth, bi-layered wall and 1-3 polar granules; an oöcyst residuum was absent. Sporocysts were elongate-ovoidal to ellipsoidal, 13-18 × 9-12 (15.9 × 10.2) µm, with a Stieda body, sub-Stieda body and sporocyst residuum; sporozoites were banana-shaped with an ellipsoidal posterior refractile body and a spheroidal anterior refractile body. This is both the first coccidian to be described from this host species and only the second reported from the host genus.

  10. A Database of Plastid Protein Families from Red Algae and Apicomplexa and Expression Regulation of the moeB Gene

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    We report the database of plastid protein families from red algae, secondary and tertiary rhodophyte-derived plastids, and Apicomplexa constructed with the novel method to infer orthology. The families contain proteins with maximal sequence similarity and minimal paralogous content. The database contains 6509 protein entries, 513 families and 278 nonsingletons (from which 230 are paralog-free, and among the remaining 48, 46 contain at maximum two proteins per species, and 2 contain at maximum three proteins per species). The method is compared with other approaches. Expression regulation of the moeB gene is studied using this database and the model of RNA polymerase competition. An analogous database obtained for green algae and their symbiotic descendants, and applications based on it are published earlier. PMID:26114108

  11. A Database of Plastid Protein Families from Red Algae and Apicomplexa and Expression Regulation of the moeB Gene.

    PubMed

    Zverkov, Oleg A; Seliverstov, Alexandr V; Lyubetsky, Vassily A

    2015-01-01

    We report the database of plastid protein families from red algae, secondary and tertiary rhodophyte-derived plastids, and Apicomplexa constructed with the novel method to infer orthology. The families contain proteins with maximal sequence similarity and minimal paralogous content. The database contains 6509 protein entries, 513 families and 278 nonsingletons (from which 230 are paralog-free, and among the remaining 48, 46 contain at maximum two proteins per species, and 2 contain at maximum three proteins per species). The method is compared with other approaches. Expression regulation of the moeB gene is studied using this database and the model of RNA polymerase competition. An analogous database obtained for green algae and their symbiotic descendants, and applications based on it are published earlier.

  12. Isospora cardellinae n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the red warbler Cardellina rubra (Swainson) (Passeriformes: Parulidae) in Mexico.

    PubMed

    Salgado-Miranda, Celene; Medina, Juan Pablo; Zepeda-Velázquez, Andrea Paloma; García-Conejo, Michele; Galindo-Sánchez, Karla Patricia; Janczur, Mariusz Krzysztof; Soriano-Vargas, Edgardo

    2016-10-01

    A new coccidian species (Protozoa: Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) collected from the red warbler Cardellina rubra (Swainson) is reported from the Nevado de Toluca National Park, Mexico. Isospora cardellinae n. sp. has subspherical oöcysts, measuring on average 26.6 × 25.4 μm, with smooth, bi-layered wall, c.1.3 μm thick. Micropyle, oöcyst residuum, and polar granule are absent. Sporocysts are ovoidal, measuring on average 19.0 × 12.0 µm, with a knob-like Stieda body, a trapezoidal sub-Stieda body and sporocyst residuum composed of scattered spherules of different sizes. Sporozoites are vermiform with one refractile body and a nucleus. This is the fourth description of an isosporoid coccidian infecting a New World warbler.

  13. Isospora cardellinae n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the red warbler Cardellina rubra (Swainson) (Passeriformes: Parulidae) in Mexico.

    PubMed

    Salgado-Miranda, Celene; Medina, Juan Pablo; Zepeda-Velázquez, Andrea Paloma; García-Conejo, Michele; Galindo-Sánchez, Karla Patricia; Janczur, Mariusz Krzysztof; Soriano-Vargas, Edgardo

    2016-10-01

    A new coccidian species (Protozoa: Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) collected from the red warbler Cardellina rubra (Swainson) is reported from the Nevado de Toluca National Park, Mexico. Isospora cardellinae n. sp. has subspherical oöcysts, measuring on average 26.6 × 25.4 μm, with smooth, bi-layered wall, c.1.3 μm thick. Micropyle, oöcyst residuum, and polar granule are absent. Sporocysts are ovoidal, measuring on average 19.0 × 12.0 µm, with a knob-like Stieda body, a trapezoidal sub-Stieda body and sporocyst residuum composed of scattered spherules of different sizes. Sporozoites are vermiform with one refractile body and a nucleus. This is the fourth description of an isosporoid coccidian infecting a New World warbler. PMID:27638736

  14. Eimeria pileata n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the rufous-capped brush finch Atlapetes pileatus Wagler (Passeriformes: Emberizidae) in Mexico.

    PubMed

    Soriano-Vargas, Edgardo; Medina, Juan Pablo; Salgado-Miranda, Celene; García-Conejo, Michele; Galindo-Sánchez, Karla Patrícia; Janczur, Mariusz Krzysztof; Berto, Bruno Pereira; Lopes, Carlos Wilson Gomes

    2015-11-01

    A new coccidian species (Protista: Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) collected from the rufous-capped brush finch Atlapetes pileatus Wagler in the Nevado de Toluca Natural Protected Area, Mexico. Oöcysts of Eimeria pileata n. sp. are ellipsoidal, measuring on average 16.5 × 14.1 μm, with a smooth, bi-layered wall. Micropyle and oöcyst residuum are absent, but a polar granule is present. Sporocysts are ellipsoidal, measuring on average 9.0 × 5.4 μm. Stieda and sub-Stieda bodies are both present. A sporocyst residuum is present as a compact mass of granules. This is the third description of an eimeriid coccidian infecting passerines.

  15. Gene Discovery in the Apicomplexa as Revealed by EST Sequencing and Assembly of a Comparative Gene Database

    PubMed Central

    Li, Li; Brunk, Brian P.; Kissinger, Jessica C.; Pape, Deana; Tang, Keliang; Cole, Robert H.; Martin, John; Wylie, Todd; Dante, Mike; Fogarty, Steven J.; Howe, Daniel K.; Liberator, Paul; Diaz, Carmen; Anderson, Jennifer; White, Michael; Jerome, Maria E.; Johnson, Emily A.; Radke, Jay A.; Stoeckert, Christian J.; Waterston, Robert H.; Clifton, Sandra W.; Roos, David S.; Sibley, L. David

    2003-01-01

    Large-scale EST sequencing projects for several important parasites within the phylum Apicomplexa were undertaken for the purpose of gene discovery. Included were several parasites of medical importance (Plasmodium falciparum, Toxoplasma gondii) and others of veterinary importance (Eimeria tenella, Sarcocystis neurona, and Neospora caninum). A total of 55,192 ESTs, deposited into dbEST/GenBank, were included in the analyses. The resulting sequences have been clustered into nonredundant gene assemblies and deposited into a relational database that supports a variety of sequence and text searches. This database has been used to compare the gene assemblies using BLAST similarity comparisons to the public protein databases to identify putative genes. Of these new entries, ∼15%–20% represent putative homologs with a conservative cutoff of p < 10−9, thus identifying many conserved genes that are likely to share common functions with other well-studied organisms. Gene assemblies were also used to identify strain polymorphisms, examine stage-specific expression, and identify gene families. An interesting class of genes that are confined to members of this phylum and not shared by plants, animals, or fungi, was identified. These genes likely mediate the novel biological features of members of the Apicomplexa and hence offer great potential for biological investigation and as possible therapeutic targets. [The sequence data from this study have been submitted to dbEST division of GenBank under accession nos.: Toxoplasma gondii: –, –, –, –, – , –, –, –, –. Plasmodium falciparum: –, –, –, –. Sarcocystis neurona: , , , , , , , , , , , , , –, –, –, –, –. Eimeria tenella: –, –, –, –, –, –, –, –, – , –, –, –, –, –, –, –, –, –, –, –. Neospora caninum: –, –, , – , –, –.] PMID:12618375

  16. First report of Calyptospora sp. (Apicomplexa, Calyptosporidae) in forage characid fish from the Três Marias Reservoir, São Francisco Basin, Brazil.

    PubMed

    de Albuquerque, Marcia Cavalcanti; de Carvalho Brasil-Sato, Marilia

    2010-05-01

    Coccidians are parasitic protozoans, and Calyptospora is an important genus of coccidia found in freshwater and marine fish of the Americas. This paper describes Calyptospora sp. that were found parasitizing the liver and intestine of Triportheus guentheri and the intestine of Tetragonopterus chalceus, two forage fish species from the Três Marias Reservoir, Upper São Francisco River, State of Minas Gerais, Brazil. Apicomplexa found in the São Francisco Basin are reported here for the first time. PMID:20163938

  17. First report of Calyptospora sp. (Apicomplexa, Calyptosporidae) in forage characid fish from the Três Marias Reservoir, São Francisco Basin, Brazil.

    PubMed

    de Albuquerque, Marcia Cavalcanti; de Carvalho Brasil-Sato, Marilia

    2010-05-01

    Coccidians are parasitic protozoans, and Calyptospora is an important genus of coccidia found in freshwater and marine fish of the Americas. This paper describes Calyptospora sp. that were found parasitizing the liver and intestine of Triportheus guentheri and the intestine of Tetragonopterus chalceus, two forage fish species from the Três Marias Reservoir, Upper São Francisco River, State of Minas Gerais, Brazil. Apicomplexa found in the São Francisco Basin are reported here for the first time.

  18. Gregarines infecting Ischnura spp. in Texas, U.S.A., including description of Septemlaterospora rasberryi n. gen. n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Actinocephalidae: Acanthosporinae) and revision of Steganorhynchus dunwoodyi (Apicomplexa: Actinocephalidae: Menosporinae).

    PubMed

    Cook, Tamara J; Smith-Herron, Autumn J

    2014-02-01

    Septemlaterospora rasberryi n. gen. n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eugregarinida: Actinocephalidae: Acanthosporinae) is described from adults of Ischnura ramburii (Odonata: Zygoptera: Coenagrionidae). Septemlaterospora n. gen is distinguished by the form of the oocysts: terminally truncated heptagonal bipyramids bearing 7 equatorial spines, 1 at each equatorial vertex, 7 terminal spines obliquely inserted at each pole, 1 at each vertex created by polar truncation; 21 spines total. The holdfast is compound, comprising a terminal epimerite and intercalating diamerite; epimerite is a thick disk or linearly crateriform sucker; diamerite is short (less than half of the total holdfast length) and very broadly obdeltoid. Association occurs immediately before syzygy and is cephalolateral and biassociative. Gametocysts are spherical with a conspicuous hyaline coat. Lacking conspicuous sporoducts, they dehisce by simple rupture. Steganorhynchus dunwoodyi is redescribed utilizing a new complete taxonomic data set, consisting of a larger set of metric characters and based on uniformly prepared, permanent specimens. New host and geographic records are reported for Calyxocephalus karyopera, Domadracunculus janovyi, Nubenocephalus secundus, and Steganorhynchus dunwoodyi, and the type host of D. janovyi is amended.

  19. Detection of antibodies against Brucella abortus, Leptospira spp., and Apicomplexa protozoa in water buffaloes in the Northeast of Argentina.

    PubMed

    Konrad, José L; Campero, Lucía M; Caspe, Gastón S; Brihuega, Bibiana; Draghi, Graciela; Moore, Dadin P; Crudeli, Gustavo A; Venturini, María C; Campero, Carlos M

    2013-11-01

    Water buffalo industry has become a profitable activity worldwide, including the Northeast of Argentina (NEA). However, research on diseases affecting this species is scarce. The aim of the present study was to detect antibodies against Brucella abortus, Leptospira spp., Neospora caninum, Toxoplasma gondii, and Sarcocystis spp. in 500 water buffalo cows from five ranches (100 animals each) in the NEA. Serum samples were tested for B. abortus by fluorescence polarization assay, Leptospira spp. by microagglutination test, and N. caninum, T. gondii, and Sarcocystis spp. by indirect fluorescent antibody tests. Overall, the proportion of seropositive animals was 6.4, 22.2, 42.2, 25.4, and 50.8 % for brucellosis, leptospirosis, neosporosis, toxoplasmosis, and sarcocystosis, respectively. The proportion of seropositive animals for all diseases was statistically different among herds (p < 0.05). Statistical differences were also detected among age groups for brucellosis and neosporosis (p < 0.05). The detection of specific antibodies to B. abortus, Leptospira spp., and several Apicomplexa protozoans in water buffaloes in the NEA is reported in this study. PMID:23765549

  20. Detection of antibodies against Brucella abortus, Leptospira spp., and Apicomplexa protozoa in water buffaloes in the Northeast of Argentina.

    PubMed

    Konrad, José L; Campero, Lucía M; Caspe, Gastón S; Brihuega, Bibiana; Draghi, Graciela; Moore, Dadin P; Crudeli, Gustavo A; Venturini, María C; Campero, Carlos M

    2013-11-01

    Water buffalo industry has become a profitable activity worldwide, including the Northeast of Argentina (NEA). However, research on diseases affecting this species is scarce. The aim of the present study was to detect antibodies against Brucella abortus, Leptospira spp., Neospora caninum, Toxoplasma gondii, and Sarcocystis spp. in 500 water buffalo cows from five ranches (100 animals each) in the NEA. Serum samples were tested for B. abortus by fluorescence polarization assay, Leptospira spp. by microagglutination test, and N. caninum, T. gondii, and Sarcocystis spp. by indirect fluorescent antibody tests. Overall, the proportion of seropositive animals was 6.4, 22.2, 42.2, 25.4, and 50.8 % for brucellosis, leptospirosis, neosporosis, toxoplasmosis, and sarcocystosis, respectively. The proportion of seropositive animals for all diseases was statistically different among herds (p < 0.05). Statistical differences were also detected among age groups for brucellosis and neosporosis (p < 0.05). The detection of specific antibodies to B. abortus, Leptospira spp., and several Apicomplexa protozoans in water buffaloes in the NEA is reported in this study.

  1. Characterisation of Isospora lusitanensis n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the Eurasian blackbird Turdus merula Linnaeus (Passeriformes: Turdidae) in mainland Portugal.

    PubMed

    Cardozo, Sergian Vianna; Berto, Bruno Pereira; da Fonseca, Isabel Pereira; Tomás, André; Thode, Fátima Regina P B; Lopes, Carlos Wilson G

    2015-10-01

    A new coccidian species (Protozoa: Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) is described from a specimen of the Eurasian blackbird Turdus merula Linnaeus held for rehabilitation and reintroduction into the wild in a centre for research and recovery of wild animals in Quinta de Marim, Olhão, Portugal. Isospora lusitanensis n. sp. has subspherical to ovoidal oöcysts, measuring on average 26.4 × 23.4 μm, with smooth, bi-layered wall c.1.1 μm thick. Micropyle and oöcyst residuum are absent, but a polar granule is present. Sporocysts are ellipsoidal, measuring on average 16.0 × 10.9 µm. Stieda body is knob-like and sub-Stieda body is prominent and rounded. Sporocyst residuum is composed of scattered spherules. Sporozoites are vermiform, with one refractile body and a nucleus. The morphological and morphometric data for the new species were compared with those for species parasitising birds of the Muscicapidae, Turdidae, Timaliidae, Troglodytidae and Cinclidae, which are considered phylogenetically close. The original histograms of Isospora turdi Schwalbach, 1959 were redrawn for comparison with I. lusitanensis n. sp. and a linear regression of width against length of the oöcysts is presented for characterisation. This is the first isosporoid coccidian described from T. merula in mainland Portugal.

  2. The response of Gregarina niphandrodes (Apicomplexa: Eugregarinida: Septatina) to host starvation in Tenebrio molitor (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae) adults.

    PubMed

    Schawang, J E; Janovy, J

    2001-06-01

    Numerous studies of host starvation have emphasized pathological effects of parasites on their insect host, but little attention has been focused on the effects of host starvation on the parasites. This study addressed the possibility that parasite life-cycle events could be manipulated by withholding food from the host. The system used was Gregarina niphandrodes (Apicomplexa: Eugregarinida) in Tenebrio molitor (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae) adults. Gregarine gametocyst formation and shedding ceased after 1 day in starved beetles but continued in fed controls. There were no statistically significant differences between total lengths of associated (3 of 5 trials) or unassociated (5 of 5 trials) gregarines found between experimental and control groups, but average numbers of the 2 life cycle events were generally higher in fed hosts than in starved ones. If infected, fed control beetles continued to form gametocysts throughout the 7-day trial periods, and gametocysts could be observed in the gut. Starved experimental beetles had no gametocysts in their guts. Refeeding of starved beetles after 4 days resulted in resumption of gametocyst formation and shedding. The studies demonstrated that the gregarine life cycle could be stopped and then started at the gametocyst formation stage like an off/on switch, simply by withholding food from, then refeeding, the host.

  3. The troublesome parasites--molecular and morphological evidence that Apicomplexa belong to the dinoflagellate-ciliate clade.

    PubMed

    Wolters, J

    1991-01-01

    Large insertions and deletions in the variable regions of eukaryotic 16S-like rRNA relative to the archaebacterial structure have been defined as a marker for rapidly evolving taxa. Deletions in the rRNA occur in the diplomonad Giardia and the microsporidian Vairimorpha, whereas insertions occur in Euglenozoa (Euglena and the kinetoplastids), Acanthamoeba, Naegleria, Physarum, Dictyostelium, the apicomplexan Plasmodium, the ciliate Euplotes, and some metazoa. Except Acanthamoeba and Euplotes, all of these protists were previously placed at the base of the eukaryote phylogeny. A re-analysis of the 16S-like rRNA and 5S rRNA data with the neighborliness method revealed a close relationship of Apicomplexa to the dinoflagellate-ciliate clade, most probably closer to the dinoflagellates. Morphological evidence that supports this grouping is the layer of sacs underneath the plasma membrane in all three taxa and the identical structure of trichocysts in the apicomplexan Spiromonas and dinoflagellates. The remaining rapidly evolving organisms might still be misplaced in the 16S-like rRNA trees.

  4. The complete mitochondrial genome sequence of Hepatozoon catesbianae (Apicomplexa: Coccidia: Adeleorina), a blood parasite of the green frog, Lithobates (formerly Rana) clamitans.

    PubMed

    Leveille, Alexandre N; Ogedengbe, Mosun E; Hafeez, Mian A; Tu, Hsiang-Hsien Abby; Barta, John R

    2014-10-01

    A complete mitochondrial genome for the blood parasite Hepatozoon catesbianae (Alveolata; Apicomplexa; Coccidia; Adeleorina; Hepatozoidae) was obtained through PCR amplification and direct sequencing of resulting PCR products. The mitochondrial genome of H. catesbianae is 6,397 bp in length and contains 3 protein-coding genes (cytochrome c oxidase subunit I [COI]; cytochrome c oxidase subunit III [COIII]; and cytochrome B [CytB]). Sequence similarities to previously published mitochondrial genomes of other apicomplexan parasites permitted annotation of 23 putative rDNA fragments in the mitochondrial genome of H. catesbianae, 14 large subunit rDNA fragments, and 9 small subunit rDNA fragments. Sequences corresponding to rDNA fragments RNA5, RNA8, RNA11, and RNA19 of Plasmodium falciparum were not identified in the mitrochondrial genome sequence of H. catesbianae. Although the presence of 3 protein-coding regions and numerous putative rDNA fragments is a feature typical for apicomplexan mitochondrial genomes, the mitochondrial genome of H. catesbianae possesses a structure and gene organization that is distinct among the Apicomplexa. This is the first complete mitochondrial genome sequence obtained from any apicomplexan parasite in the suborder Adeleorina.

  5. Aggregata (Protozoa: Apicomplexa) infection in the common octopus Octopus vulgaris from the West Mediterranean Sea: The infection rates and possible effect of faunistic, environmental and ecological factors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mayo-Hernández, E.; Barcala, E.; Berriatua, E.; García-Ayala, A.; Muñoz, P.

    2013-10-01

    Prevalence and distribution of the coccidian parasite Aggregata octopiana (Protozoa: Apicomplexa) in common octopus (Octopus vulgaris) in the Mediterranean Spanish coasts were studied. A total of 114 octopuses were sampled from 30 geographic sectors by trawl fleet, and whitish macroscopic oocysts typical of A. octopiana infection were recorded in 96% of octopuses in the digestive tract and mainly in intestine and spiral caecum. The univariate analysis showed that lesion extension varied according to specific octopus, environmental and faunistic variables. A subsequent multivariable analysis indicated that the risk of macroscopic lesions in the caecum was greater in males compared to females, in octopuses living in deeper compared to shallower waters and in hauls where the crustacean Pagurus excavatus was present. The study provides further evidence of the abundance of A. octopiana in octopus ecosystems urging for further studies to evaluate its health impact. The combined abundance of infected octopuses and P. excavatus merits attention.

  6. Isospora pitiguari n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the rufous-browed peppershrike (Aves: Passeriformes: Vireonidae) Cyclarhis gujanensis Gmelin, 1789.

    PubMed

    Lopes, Bruno do Bomfim; Berto, Bruno Pereira; Luz, Hermes Ribeiro; Galvão, Gideão da Silva; Ferreira, Ildemar; Lopes, Carlos Wilson Gomes

    2014-01-01

    In the current study, a new coccidian species (Protozoa: Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae), collected from the rufous-browed peppershrike Cyclarhis gujanensis Gmelin, 1789, is reported from Brazil. Isospora pitiguari n. sp. has oocysts, which are spherical to sub-spherical, 26.8 × 25.7 μm, with smooth, bilayered wall ~1.5 μm thick. Micropyle, oocyst residuum, and polar granule are absent. Sporocysts are rounded to slightly ovoidal, 14.4 × 11.6 µm. Stieda body flattened and substieda body prominent and rounded. Sporocyst residuum is composed of granules of different sizes. Sporozoites are vermiform with one refractile body and a nucleus. This is the first description of an isosporoid coccidium infecting a New World vireo. PMID:24870075

  7. Circadian variation in shedding of the oocysts of Isospora turdi (Apicomplexa) in blackbirds (Turdusmerula): an adaptative trait against desiccation and ultraviolet radiation.

    PubMed

    Martinaud, G; Billaudelle, M; Moreau, J

    2009-05-01

    Many parasite species spend part of their life cycle in the external environment waiting for a new host. Emergence of parasites often occurs once a day, which may help to minimise mortality in an inhospitable environment and increase transition rates. Many intestinal parasites in birds are released in faeces only in the late afternoon. However, the adaptative significance of this pattern is unclear. One hypothesis is that a particular time of emergence may prevent parasite desiccation and therefore increase the parasite's life expectancy in the external environment. We tested this hypothesis experimentally using the blackbird (Turdus merula) infected with Isospora turdi (Protozoa: Apicomplexa). We found that short exposure of faeces to natural sunlight has a dramatic effect on oocyst survival. This appears to be due to the effect of warmth and ultraviolet (UV) radiation with UVB waves being more damaging than UVA. Oocysts contained in faeces shed in water are protected from the effect of sunlight. Together, these results suggest that the release of oocysts in the late afternoon is an adaptative trait to avoid desiccation and UV radiation, thus reducing mortality of the oocysts in the external environment.

  8. Molecular phylogeny of Pacific Archigregarines (Apicomplexa), including descriptions of Veloxidium leptosynaptae n. gen., n. sp., from the sea cucumber Leptosynapta clarki (Echinodermata), and two new species of Selenidium.

    PubMed

    Wakeman, Kevin C; Leander, Brian S

    2012-01-01

    Although archigregarines are poorly understood intestinal parasites of marine invertebrates, they are critical for understanding the earliest stages in the evolution of the Apicomplexa. Previous studies suggest that archigregarines are a paraphyletic stem group from which other lineages of gregarines, and possibly all other groups of apicomplexans, evolved. However, substantiating this inference is difficult because molecular phylogenetic data from archigregarines, in particular, and other gregarines, in general, are severely limited. In an attempt to help fill gaps in our knowledge of archigregarine diversity and phylogeny, we set out to discover and characterize novel lineages of archigregarines with high-resolution light and scanning electron microscopy and analyses of small subunit (SSU) rDNA sequences derived from single-cell (SC) PCR techniques. Here, we describe two novel species of Selenidium, namely Selenidium idanthyrsae n. sp. and S. boccardiellae n. sp., and demonstrate the surface morphology and molecular phylogenetic position of the previously reported species S. cf. mesnili. We also describe a novel genus of archigregarine, Veloxidium leptosynaptae n. gen., n. sp., which branches with an environmental sequence and, together, forms the nearest sister lineage to a diverse clade of marine eugregarines (i.e. lecudinids and urosporids). This molecular phylogenetic result is consistent with the hypothesis that archigregarines are deeply paraphyletic within apicomplexans, and suggests that convergent evolution played an important role in shaping the diversity of eugregarine trophozoites.

  9. Phylogenetic relationships of Hepatozoon (Haemogregarina) boigae, Hepatozoon sp., Haemogregarina clelandi and Haemoproteus chelodina from Australian reptiles to other Apicomplexa based on cladistic analyses of ultrastructural and life-cycle characters.

    PubMed

    Jakes, K; O'Donoghue, P J; Cameron, S L

    2003-06-01

    The phylogeny of representative haemozoan species of the phylum Apicomplexa was reconstructed by cladistic analyses of ultrastructural and life-cycle characteristics. The analysis incorporated 4 apicomplexans previously not included in phylogenetic reconstructions: Haemogregarina clelandi from the Brisbane River tortoise (Emydura signata), Hepatozoon sp. from the slaty grey snake (Stegonotus cucullatus), Hepatozoon (Haemogregarina) boigae from the brown tree snake (Boiga irregularis), and Haemoproteus chelodina from the saw-shelled tortoise (Elseya latisternum). There was no apparent correlation between parasite phylogeny and that of their vertebrate hosts, but there appeared to be some relationship between parasites and their intermediate hosts, suggestive of parasite/vector co-evolution. PMID:12866793

  10. Species of coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) in shrews from Alaska, U.S.A., and northeastern Siberia, Russia, with description of two new species.

    PubMed

    Lynch, A J; Duszynski, D W

    2008-08-01

    Fecal samples (n = 636) from 10 species of shrews collected in Alaska (n = 540) and northeastern Siberia (n = 96) were examined for the presence of coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae). Five distinct oocyst morphotypes were observed. Three types were consistent with oocysts of previously recognized coccidia species from other shrew hosts. These were Eimeria inyoni, E. vagrantis, and Isospora brevicauda, originally described from the inyo shrew (Sorex tenellus), dusky shrew (S. monticolus), and northern short-tailed shrew (Blarina brevicauda), respectively. We found 5 new host records for E. inyoni, 3 for E. vagrantis, and 3 for I. brevicauda. The 2 additional oocyst morphotypes, both from the tundra shrew (Sorex tundrensis), are putative new species. Sporulated oocysts of Eimeria beringiacea n. sp. are subspheroidal, 17.7 x 15.6 microm (14-24 x 13-20 microm) with a length (L)/width (W) ratio of 1.1 (1.0-1.4); these lack a micropyle (M), an oocyst residuum (OR), and a polar granule (PG). Sporocysts are ellipsoidal, 10.3 x 6.1 microm (7-14 x 4-8 microm), with a L/W ratio of 1.7 (1.3-2.3) and have a Stieda body (SB), Substieda body (SSB), and sporocyst residuum (SR). Oocysts of Eimeria tundraensis n. sp. are spheroidal to subspheroidal, 24.8 x 23.5 microm (23-26 x 22-25 microm), with a L/W ratio of 1.1 (1.0-1.2); these lack a M and OR, but a single PG is present. Sporocysts are elongate ellipsoidal, 15.4 x 8.3 microm (13-17 x 7-9 microm), with a L/W ratio of 1.9 (1.4-2.1) and have a SB, SSB, and SR. PMID:18576829

  11. Molecular assessment of Hepatozoon (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina) infections in wild canids and rodents from north Africa, with implications for transmission dynamics across taxonomic groups.

    PubMed

    Maia, João P; Alvares, Francisco; Boratyński, Zbyszek; Brito, José C; Leite, João V; Harris, D James

    2014-10-01

    Parasites play a major role in ecosystems, and understanding of host-parasite interactions is important for predicting parasite transmission dynamics and epidemiology. However, there is still a lack of knowledge about the distribution, diversity, and impact of parasites in wildlife, especially from remote areas. Hepatozoon is a genus of apicomplexan parasites that is transmitted by ingestion of infected arthropod vectors. However, alternative modes of transmission have been identified such as trophic transmission. Using the 18S rRNA gene as a marker, we provide an assessment of Hepatozoon prevalence in six wild canid and two rodent species collected between 2003 and 2012 from remote areas in North Africa. By combining this with other predator-prey systems in a phylogenetic framework, we investigate Hepatozoon transmission dynamics in distinct host taxa. Prevalence was high overall among host species (African jerboa Jaculus jaculus [17/47, 36%], greater Egyptian jerboa Jaculus orientalis [5/7, 71%], side-striped jackal Canis adustus [1/2, 50%], golden jackal Canis aureus [6/32, 18%], pale fox Vulpes pallida [14/28, 50%], Rüppell's fox Vulpes rueppellii [6/11, 55%], red fox Vulpes vulpes [8/16, 50%], and fennec fox Vulpes zerda [7/11, 42%]). Phylogenetic analysis showed further evidence of occasional transmission of Hepatozoon lineages from prey to canid predators, which seems to occur less frequently than in other predator-prey systems such as between snakes and lizards. Due to the complex nature of the Hepatozoon lifecycle (heteroxenous and vector-borne), future studies on these wild host species need to clarify the dynamics of alternative modes of Hepatozoon transmission and identify reservoir and definitive hosts in natural populations. We also detected putative Babesia spp. (Apicomplexa: Piroplasmida) infections in two canid species from this region, V. pallida (1/28) and V. zerda (1/11). PMID:25050803

  12. Four new coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the Plateau zokor, Myospalax baileyi Thomas (Rodentia: Myospalacinae), a subterranean rodent from Haibei area, Qinghai Province, China.

    PubMed

    Cao, Yi-Fan; Nie, Xu-Heng; Zhang, Tong-Zuo; Du, Shou-Yang; Duszynski, Donald W; Bian, Jiang-Hui

    2014-02-01

    Thirty-eight faecal samples from the Plateau zokor, Myospalax baileyi Thomas, collected in the Haibei Area, Qinghai Province, China, were examined for the presence of coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae). Seventeen of 38 faecal samples (44.7%) were found to contain coccidian oöcysts representing four new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875, and four of 17 (23.5%) infected zokors were concurrently infected with two or three of these eimerian species. The sporulated oöcysts of Eimeria myospalacensis n. sp. are ovoidal, 9.5-17.0 × 8.0-13.0 (mean 13.0 × 10.4) μm; a polar granule is present, oöcyst residuum is absent; sporocysts are ovoidal, 4.5-7.5 × 3.0-5.0 (mean 6.3 × 4.2) μm and have both a Stieda body and residuum. Oöcysts of Eimeria fani n. sp. are ellipsoidal to cylindroidal, 12.5-16.0 × 8.0-11.0 (mean 14.6 × 9.9) μm; a polar granule is present, but micropyle and residuum are lacking; sporocysts are ovoidal, 4.5-7.5 × 3.0-5.3 (mean 6.7 × 4.4) μm; a residuum and a Steida body are present. Oöcysts of Eimeria baileyii n. sp. are ellipsoidal, 15.0-23.0 × 12.0-18.0 (mean 18.2 × 13.7) μm; a polar granule is present but oöcyst residuum is absent; sporocysts are ovoidal, 8.0-11.0 × 5.0-7.0 (mean 9.5 × 5.9) μm and have both a Stieda body and residuum. Oöcysts of Eimeria menyuanensis n. sp. are ovoidal, 12.5-21.0 × 11.0-18.0 (mean 17.1 × 14.6) μm, with a distinct micropyle c.2.5 μm wide; a polar granule is present but a residuum is absent; sporocysts are ovoidal, 8.0-12.0 × 5.0-7.0 (mean 10.2 × 6.4) μm, and have both a Stieda body and residuum.

  13. Morpho-functional characterization and esterase patterns of the midgut of Tribolium castaneum Herbst, 1797 (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae) parasitized by Gregarina cuneata (Apicomplexa: Eugregarinidae).

    PubMed

    Gigliolli, Adriana A Sinópolis; Lapenta, Ana Silva; Ruvolo-Takasusuki, Maria Claudia Colla; Abrahão, Josielle; Conte, Hélio

    2015-09-01

    Tribolium castaneum (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae) is a common pest of stored grains and byproducts and is normally infected by Gregarina cuneata (Apicomplexa: Eugregarinidae). The life cycle of this parasite includes the sporozoite, trophozoite, gamont, gametocyte, and oocyst stages, which occur between the epithelium and lumen of the host's midgut. This study aims to describe the morphofunctional alterations in the midgut and determine the esterase patterns in T. castaneum when parasitized by gregarines. To achieve this purpose, midguts of adult insects were isolated, processed, and analysed using light and electron microscopy. We determined total protein content, amylase activity, and the expression and related activities of the esterases by using polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PAGE). The midgut of T. castaneum is formed by digestive, regenerative, and endocrine cells. The effects of parasitism on the digestive cells are severe, because the gregarines remain attached to these cells to absorb all the nutrients they need throughout their development. In these cells, the most common alterations observed include expansion and fragmentation of the rough endoplasmic reticulum, development of the smooth endoplasmic reticulum, changes in mitochondrial cristae, cytoplasmic vacuolization, formation of myelin structures, spherites, large intercellular spaces, autophagic vesicles, expansion of the basal labyrinth, and cytoplasmic protrusions. Deposits of glycogen granules were also observed. Amylase activity was reduced in parasitized insects. Regenerative cells were found in disorganized crypts and did not differentiate into new cells, thus, compromising the restoration of the damaged epithelium. Though few morphological alterations were observed in the endocrine cells, results suggest that the synthesis and/or release of hormones might be impaired. Nine esterases (EST-1 to 9) were identified in the midgut of T. castaneum and were expressed in varying levels in response

  14. A new species of Caryospora Léger, 1904 (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the endangered Round Island boa Casarea dussumieri (Schlegel) (Serpentes: Bolyeridae) of Round Island, Mauritius: an endangered parasite?

    PubMed

    Daszak, Peter; Ball, Stanley J; Streicker, Daniel G; Jones, Carl G; Snow, Keith R

    2011-02-01

    A new species of Caryospora Léger, 1904 (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae), C. durelli n. sp., is described from the endangered Round Island boa Casarea dussumieri (Schlegel) (Serpentes: Bolyeridae) from Round Island, Mauritius. Six of 11 hosts were infected. Oöcysts are spherical to subspherical, 19.2 × 18.2 (17.5-21 × 16-21) μm, n = 20, and have a shape index (mean length/mean width) of 1.05 (1.02-1.09). The bi-layered wall is composed of an outer layer of c.0.6 μm thick and an inner layer of c.0.4 μm thick. A micropyle, oöcyst residuum and polar granule are absent. Sporocysts are ellipsoidal, 14.7 × 11.0 (13-16 × 9.5-11.5) μm, n = 20, and have a shape index of 1.33. Both Stieda and substieda bodies are present. The sporocyst residuum measures c.12 × 4.5 μm, is surrounded by sporozoites and composed of numerous granules. Refractile bodies are present but not clearly visible. This is the first coccidian parasite reported from the family Bolyeridae and the first species of Caryospora durrelli [corrected] reported from the Mascarenes. Conservation issues concerning parasites of endangered host species are discussed.

  15. Tomaculocystis corpulenta n. gen., n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eugregarinorida) parasitizing the little yellow cockroach, Cariblatta lutea (Blattodea: Ectobiidae), in Alabama and Florida with recognition of Tomaculocystis cylindrosa n. comb. and Tomaculocystis mukundai n. comb. parasitizing ectobiid cockroaches in India.

    PubMed

    Clopton, Richard E

    2015-02-01

    Tomaculocystis corpulenta n. gen., n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eugregarinorida: Septatorina: Gregarinidae) is described from populations of the little yellow cockroach, Cariblatta lutea (Blattodea: Ectobiidae), established in laboratory culture from samples collected in Alabama and Florida. Tomaculocystis n. gen. are differentiated from other members of Gregarina by a markedly elliptoid gametocyst inside a persistent, lomentiform hyaline epicyst; developmental organization and growth of the spore tubes from gametocyst surface tumidi; and dehiscence by extrusion of non-chain forming oocysts through spore tubes that barely extend beyond the epicyst wall. Gregarina cylindrosa, Gregarina discocephala, and Gregarina mukundai are recognized as members of Tomaculocystis, and G. cylindrosa is recognized as the senior synonym of G. discocephala. Thus, Tomaculocystis cylindrosa n. comb. and Tomaculocystis mukundai n. comb. are formed. Species of Tomaculocystis are distinguished based on gamont deutomerite and oocyst shape and size. The oocysts of T. corpulenta are broadly dolioform, lack 4 polar knobs, and possess distinct, unique polar plates. Oocysts of all other known species in the genus are more oblong in shape, possess 4 polar knobs, and lack the distinct polar plates observed in the oocysts of T. corpulenta. Host utilization and geographic distribution among gregarine genera parasitizing the cockroach family Ectobiidae reveal a pattern of host-parasite specificity linking gregarine genera with ectobiidid subfamilies. Overall patterns suggest a hypothesis of European endemicy for Gamocystis, but hypotheses for the origin and radiation of Tomaculocystis or species of Gregarina infecting cockroaches are confounded by the cosmopolitan spread of pest cockroach species among humans.

  16. Some corrections in Haemogregarine (Apicomplexa: Protozoa) nomenclature.

    PubMed

    Levine, N D

    1982-11-01

    The nomenclature of three genera in the family Haemogregarinidae (Haemogregarina, Karyolysus, and Hepatozoon) has been reviewed and the following new names are introduced to replace homonyms or for previously unnamed species: haemogregarina carlosi n. nom., in the erythrocytes of the lizard Lacerta ocellata; Haemogregarina tincae n. nom., in the stomach and intestine of the tench Tinca tinca; Hepatozoon insectivorae n. sp., in the leucocytes of the shrews Sorex araneus and Crocidura leucodon; Hepatozoon krampitzi n. sp., in the leucocytes of the vole Microtus oeconomus; Hepatozoon peromysci n. sp., in the leucocytes of the deermice Peromyscus boylii and P. truei gilberti; and Hepatozoon pallida (Pessoa et al., 1971) n. comb., in the erythrocytes of the snake Thamnodynastes pallidus nattereri.

  17. LIFE CYCLE OF CALYPTOSPORA FUNDULI (APICOMPLEXA: CALYPTOSPORIDAE)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The taxonomic status of the extraintestinal piscine coccidium Calyptospora funduli is based in part on its requirement of an intermediate host (the daggerblade grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio). In this study, grass shrimp fed livers of Gulf killifish (Fundulus grandis) infected ...

  18. CALYPTOSPORA FUNDULI (APICOMPLEXA): LIFE CYCLE AND TAXONOMY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The taxonomic status of the extraintestinal piscine coccidium Calyptospora funduli is based in part on its requirement of an intermediate host (the daggerblade grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio). Grass shrimp fed livers of Gulf killifish (Fundulus grandis) infected with sporulated...

  19. Two new eimerians (Apicomplexa) from insectivorous mammals in Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Couch, Lee; Laakkonen, Juha; Goodman, Steven; Duszynski, Donald W

    2011-04-01

    Fecal samples from 126 insectivorous mammals in Madagascar were collected between spring 1999 and fall 2001. In the Afrosoricida, 21 species in 5 genera were sampled, including 17 species of Microgale (31/96, 32% infected), Hemicentetes semispinosus (1/2, 50%), Oryzorictes hova (1/5, 20%), Setifer setosus (8/13, 61.5%), and Tenrec ecaudatus (5/8, 62.5%); in the Soricomorpha, only Suncus murinus was examined and 1/2 (50%) were infected. Two morphotypes of eimeriid oocysts, representing 2 presumptive new species, were found in 47 (37%) infected animals; only 2 afrosoricid hosts (2% of all hosts, 4% of infected hosts) had both oocyst morphotypes. Sporulated oocysts of the first morphotype, Eimeria tenrececaudata n. sp., are subspheroidal, 18.8 × 17.4 (17-22 × 15-20), with a length∶width ratio (L/W) of 1.1 (1.0-1.2); they lack a micropyle but may contain 0-2 polar granules and a single, small round oocyst residuum, 3 × 2.3. Sporocysts are lemon-shaped, 9.9 × 6.6 (9-11 × 5-8), with a L/W of 1.5 (1.2-2.0); they have a prominent, slightly flattened Stieda body and a substieda body but lack a parastieda body. The sporocyst residuum consists of only a few granules between the sporozoites, which are sausage-shaped and have a large posterior refractile body. Oocysts of the second morphotype, Eimeria setifersetosa n. sp. are spheroidal to subspheroidal, 30.1 × 28.6 (27-34 × 25-34), with a L/W of 1.1 (1.0-1.2); they lack both micropyle and oocyst residuum, but 1-2 polar granules are usually present. Sporocysts are subspheroidal to broadly ellipsoidal, 9.6 × 7.3 (9-11 × 6-8), with a L/W of 1.3 (1.1-1.7); they have a broad Stieda body, lack sub- and parastieda bodies, and have a residuum of a few granules scattered throughout the sporocyst. Sporozoites were not clearly defined, but what seemed to be a single large refractile body is seen, presumably in each sporozoite.

  20. Klossiella (Apicomplexa, Klossiellidae) in petaurid and macropodid marsupials in Australia.

    PubMed

    Barker, I K; Munday, B L; Hartley, W J

    1985-08-01

    Six new species of Klossiella are described in the kidneys of Australian marsupials: Klossiella rufogrisei in Bennett's Wallaby, Macropus rufogriseus; Klossiella rufi in the Red Kangaroo, Macropus rufus; Klossiella thylogale in the Red-Bellied or Tasmanian Pademelon, Thylogale billardierii; Klossiella beveridgei in the Spectacled Hare-Wallaby, Lagorchestes conspicillatus; Klossiella bettongiae in the Tasmanian Bettong, Bettongia gaimardi; and Klossiella schoinobatis in the petaurid Greater Glider, Petauroides volans. It is concluded that the genus Klossiella has radiated widely among Australian marsupials, and that since it is present in American marsupials, it may have an ancient association with the subclass.

  1. Cryptosporidium avium n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporidiidae) in birds.

    PubMed

    Holubová, Nikola; Sak, Bohumil; Horčičková, Michaela; Hlásková, Lenka; Květoňová, Dana; Menchaca, Sarah; McEvoy, John; Kváč, Martin

    2016-06-01

    The morphological, biological, and molecular characteristics of Cryptosporidium avian genotype V are described, and the species name Cryptosporidium avium is proposed to reflect its specificity for birds under natural and experimental conditions. Oocysts of C. avium measured 5.30-6.90 μm (mean = 6.26 μm) × 4.30-5.50 μm (mean = 4.86 μm) with a length to width ratio of 1.29 (1.14-1.47). Oocysts of C. avium obtained from four naturally infected red-crowned parakeets (Cyanoramphus novaezealandiae) were infectious for 6-month-old budgerigars (Melopsittacus undulatus) and hens (Gallus gallus f. domestica). The prepatent periods in both susceptible bird species was 11 days postinfection (DPI). The infection intensity of C. avium in budgerigars and hens was low, with a maximum intensity of 5000 oocysts per gram of feces. Oocysts of C. avium were microscopically detected at only 12-16 DPI in hens and 12 DPI in budgerigars, while PCR analyses revealed the presence of specific DNA in fecal samples from 11 to 30 DPI (the conclusion of the experiment). Cryptosporidium avium was not infectious for 8-week-old SCID and BALB/c mice (Mus musculus). Naturally or experimentally infected birds showed no clinical signs of cryptosporidiosis, and no pathology was detected. Developmental stages of C. avium were detected in the ileum and cecum using scanning electron microscopy. Phylogenetic analyses based on small subunit rRNA, actin, and heat shock protein 70 gene sequences revealed that C. avium is genetically distinct from previously described Cryptosporidium species. PMID:26905074

  2. Natural infection of Cryptosporidium muris (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporiidae) in Siberian chipmunks.

    PubMed

    Hůrková, Lada; Hajdusek, Ondrej; Modrý, David

    2003-04-01

    Coprologic examination of nine Siberian chipmunks (Eutamias sibiricus) imported from Southeast Asia revealed infection with Cryptosporidium sp. Experimental inoculation of BALB/c mice proved their susceptibility to the infection. Infected mice shed oocysts 14-35 days postinfection. Oocyst morphology was similar to that reported for C. muris in previous studies, oocysts were 8.1 (7.0-9.0) x 5.9 (5.0-6.5) microns. Clinical signs were absent in naturally infected chipmunks and experimental mice. Histologic examinations of mice revealed numerous developmental stages of C. muris in the glandular stomach. Analysis of partial small subunit rRNA gene sequences confirmed identity of these isolates as C. muris. Our results represent the first report of C. muris in members of the family Sciuridae.

  3. Life cycle of Hammondia hammondi (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) in cats

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Hammondia hammondi and Toxoplasma gondii are feline coccidian that are morphologically, antigenically, and phylogenitically related. Both parasites multiply asexually and sexually in feline intestinal enterocytes but H. hammondi remains confined to enterocytes whereas T. gondii also parasitizes extr...

  4. Phylogeny of Fish-Infecting Calyptospora species (Apicomplexa: Eimeriorina)

    EPA Science Inventory

    There are numerous species of apicomplexans that infect poikilothermic vertebrates such as fishes, and possess unique morphological features that provide insight into the evolution of this important phylum of parasites. Here the relationship of the fish-infecting Calyptospora spe...

  5. Developmental biology of Cystoisospora (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) monozoic tissue cysts

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Tissue cyst stages are an intriguing aspect of the developmental cycle and transmission of members of the Family Sarcocystidae. Tissue cyst stages of the genera Toxoplasma, Hammondia, Neospora, Besnoitia, and Sarcocystis contain many infectious stages (bradyzoites).The tissue cyst stage of Cystoisos...

  6. Studies on eimerians (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) of wild ruminants.

    PubMed

    Pyziel, Anna

    2012-01-01

    The studies were carried out in W. Stefanski Institute of Parasitology Polish Academy of Sciences. Doctoral thesis defense took place on May 29th 2012. Supervisor: prof. dr hab. Aleksander W. Demiaszkiewicz. PMID:25165763

  7. Building the perfect parasite: cell division in apicomplexa.

    PubMed

    Striepen, Boris; Jordan, Carly N; Reiff, Sarah; van Dooren, Giel G

    2007-06-01

    Apicomplexans are pathogens responsible for malaria, toxoplasmosis, and crytposporidiosis in humans, and a wide range of livestock diseases. These unicellular eukaryotes are stealthy invaders, sheltering from the immune response in the cells of their hosts, while at the same time tapping into these cells as source of nutrients. The complexity and beauty of the structures formed during their intracellular development have made apicomplexans the darling of electron microscopists. Dramatic technological progress over the last decade has transformed apicomplexans into respectable genetic model organisms. Extensive genomic resources are now available for many apicomplexan species. At the same time, parasite transfection has enabled researchers to test the function of specific genes through reverse and forward genetic approaches with increasing sophistication. Transfection also introduced the use of fluorescent reporters, opening the field to dynamic real time microscopic observation. Parasite cell biologists have used these tools to take a fresh look at a classic problem: how do apicomplexans build the perfect invasion machine, the zoite, and how is this process fine-tuned to fit the specific niche of each pathogen in this ancient and very diverse group? This work has unearthed a treasure trove of novel structures and mechanisms that are the focus of this review.

  8. Life cycle of Cystoisospora felis (Coccidia: Apicomplexa) in cats and mice

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cystoisospora felis is a ubiquitous apicomplexan protozoon of cats. The endogenous development of C. felis was studied in cats after feeding them infected mice. For this, 5 newborn cats were killed at 24, 48, 72, 96, and 120 h after having been fed mesenteric lymph nodes and spleens of mice that wer...

  9. Cryptosporidium fayeri n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporidiidae) from the Red Kangaroo (Macropus rufus).

    PubMed

    Ryan, Una M; Power, Michelle; Xiao, Lihua

    2008-01-01

    The morphology and infectivity of the oocysts of a new species of Cryptosporidium from the faeces of the red kangaroo (Macropus rufus) are described. Oocysts are structurally indistinguishable from those of Cryptosporidium parvum. Oocysts of the new species are passed fully sporulated, lack sporocysts, and measure 4.5-5.1 microm (mean=4.9) x 3.8-5.0 microm (mean=4.3 microm) with a length to width ratio 1.02:1.18 (mean 1.14) (n=50). Oocysts were not infectious for neonate ARC Swiss mice. Multi-locus analysis of numerous unlinked loci demonstrated this species to be distinct (90.64%-97.88% similarity) from C. parvum. Based on biological and molecular data, this Cryptosporidium infecting marsupials is proposed to be a new species Cryptosporidium fayeri n. sp.

  10. [Formation and diversity of parasitophorous vacuoles in parasitic protozoa. The Coccidia (Sporozoa, Apicomplexa)].

    PubMed

    Beĭer, T V; Svezhova, N V; Radchenko, A I; Sidorenko, N V

    2003-01-01

    Data on parasitophorous vacuole (PV) formation in host cells (HC) harbouring different intracellular protozoan parasites have been reviewed and critically analysed, with special reference to the main representatives of the Coccidia. The vacuole membrane (PVM) is the interface between host and parasite, playing a role in nutrient acquisition by the parasite from the HC. The PV phenomenon is regarded as a generalized HC response to the introduction of alien bodies (microorganisms), which eventually reflects the evolutionary established host-parasite relationships at cellular, subcellular and molecular levels. Special attention has been paid to the existing morpho-functional diversity of the PVs within the same genera and species of parasites, and even at different stages of the parasite life cycle. The PVM is generally considered to derive from the HC plasmalemma, whose biochemical composition undergoes significant changes as the intravacuolar parasite grows. The original HC proteins are selectively excluded from the PVM, while those of the parasite are incorporated. As the result, the changed PVM becomes not fusigenic for HC lysosomes. For Toxoplasma gondii and other cyst-forming coccidia (Isospora, Sarcocystis), a definite correlation has been noticed between the extent of rhoptry and dense granule secrets released by a zoite during HC internalization, on the one hand, and the pattern of the PV that forms, on the other one. In T. gondii, tachyzoites, known to discharge abundant secrets, commonly force the development of PVs limited with a single unit membrane and equipped with a tubulovesicular network in the lumen. Unlike, bradyzoites known to be deficient in secretory materials trigger the formation of PVs with a three-membrane lining composed of the changed invaginated plasmalemma in addition to two membranes of endoplasmic reticulum. The two different types of PV harbour, respectively, exoenteric and enteric stages of T. gondii, the latter being confined to the cat intestine only. Unlike, all endogenous stages of the classic intestinal coccidia (Eimeria spp.) develop within PVs limited with a single membrane, with some invaginations extending into the PV lumen. Unusual PV patterns are characteristic of the extracytoplasmic eimerian coccidia (Cryptosporidium, Epieimeria) and adeleid haemogreagarines (Karyolysus). In cyst-forming coccidia, the PVM is actively involved in tissue cyst wall formation, thus protecting the encysted parasites from recognition by the host immune system. All this strongly suggests that the PV is far from being an indifferent membraneous vesicle containing a parasite, but represents a metabolically active compartment in infected cells. Since all the coccidia are obligate intracellular parasites, the mode of their intimate interaction with the HC, largely accomplished via the PV and its membrane, is vital for their survival as biological species.

  11. Didelphis aurita (Marsupialia: Didelphidae): a new host for Sarcocystis lindsayi (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae).

    PubMed

    da Silva Stabenow, Cristiane; Ederli, Nicole Brand; Lopes, Carlos Wilson Gomes; de Oliveira, Francisco Carlos Rodrigues

    2012-12-01

    Nine opossums, Didelphis aurita , were captured in the city of Seropédica, State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and examined for species of Sarcocystis. Sporocysts were observed in the mucosal scrapings of the small intestine from 3 opossums. Five budgerigars, Melopsittacus undulatus , were infected with sporocysts from each of these infected opossums and 5 budgerigars were used as controls. Of the 15 sporocyst-treated budgerigars, 5 birds that received sporocysts from 1 of the infected opossums developed tissue parasites. Meronts in the vascular endothelium of the lung venous capillaries and cysts in the skeletal and cardiac muscle cells were observed in histological sections stained with hematoxylin and eosin. The microscopic cysts, which were predominantly in the tongue and leg muscles, ranged from 65.3 to 118.1 μm in length and 14.0 to 29.4 μm in width and from 0.9 to 1.9 μm in thickness of the cystic wall. Sections examined by transmission electron microscopy revealed that the cyst wall contained numerous slender and jagged-shaped protrusions, each with a finger-like formation at the end. The morphology, especially of the cyst wall, and the morphometry of the tissue cysts indicate that the parasite is Sarcocystis lindsayi and, therefore, the opossum, D. aurita , is now considered a definitive host for this species in Brazil. PMID:22571294

  12. Acquisition and transmission of Hepatozoon canis (Apicomplexa: Hepatozoidae) by the tick Amblyomma ovale (Acari: Ixodidae).

    PubMed

    Rubini, A S; Paduan, K S; Martins, T F; Labruna, M B; O'Dwyer, L H

    2009-10-14

    The present study aimed to evaluate under controlled conditions the acquisition of Hepatozoon canis by Amblyomma ovale after feeding on infected dogs, and the subsequent induction of infection in uninfected dogs that ingested the experimentally infected ticks. Two H. canis naturally infected dogs were infested with A. ovale adult ticks derived from an uninfected laboratory tick colony. After feeding, two A. ovale females presented H. canis oocysts in the hemolymph at the first and fourth days after removal of ticks from dogs. The oocysts had an average size of 244.34 microm x 255.46 microm. Three uninfected dogs were fed with ticks previously fed on the infected dogs. Only one dog became infected 32 days after oral inoculation, presenting circulating gametocytes, parasitemia less than 1%, and positive PCR confirmed to be H. canis by DNA sequencing. The results obtained indicated A. ovale ticks as potential vector of H. canis in rural areas of Brazil. PMID:19501969

  13. Parasites and malignancies, a review, with emphasis on digestive cancer induced by Cryptosporidium parvum (Alveolata: Apicomplexa)

    PubMed Central

    Benamrouz, S.; Conseil, V.; Creusy, C.; Calderon, E.; Dei-Cas, E.; Certad, G.

    2012-01-01

    The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) identifies ten infectious agents (viruses, bacteria, parasites) able to induce cancer disease in humans. Among parasites, a carcinogenic role is currently recognized to the digenetic trematodes Schistosoma haematobium, leading to bladder cancer, and to Clonorchis sinensis or Opisthorchis viverrini, which cause cholangiocarcinoma. Furthermore, several reports suspected the potential association of other parasitic infections (due to Protozoan or Metazoan parasites) with the development of neoplastic changes in the host tissues. The present work shortly reviewed available data on the involvement of parasites in neoplastic processes in humans or animals, and especially focused on the carcinogenic power of Cryptosporidium parvum infection. On the whole, infection seems to play a crucial role in the etiology of cancer. PMID:22348213

  14. Sarcocystis tuagulusi, n.sp. (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) from Williamson's mouse deer (Tuagulus williamsoni) (Artiodactyla:Tragulidae).

    PubMed

    Hu, Jun Jie; Huang, Si; Chen, Ming Yong; Wen, Tao; Esch, Gerald Wisler; Liu, Qiong; Liu, Ting Ting

    2016-03-01

    Numerous species of Sarcocystis have been reported from wild ruminants, but none has been from Williamson's mouse deer (Tuagulus williamsoni). Here, we describe a new species, Sarcocystis tuagulusi, infecting five of 12 Williamson's mouse deer from southwest China. Mature sarcocysts are microscopic, up to 2280-μm long. The sarcocyst wall had 8.2-μm long villar protrusions, type 24. Using transmission electron microscopy, the protrusions on sarcocysts appeared as elongated, lancet- or leaf-like shapes in longitudinal sections; in contrast, the cross-sections revealed mushroom-shaped protrusions. In the core of the protrusion, a bundle of microtubules penetrated diagonally into a ground substance along the longitudinal axis. A phyogenetic analysis based on 18S rRNA and cox1 sequences suggested S. tuagulusi is closely related to Sarcocystis species from ruminants that employ felids as definitive hosts. PMID:26677097

  15. Morphologic and morphometric analysis of Hepatozoon spp. (Apicomplexa, Hepatozoidae) of snakes.

    PubMed

    Moço, Tatiana Cristina; O'Dwyer, Lucia Helena; Vilela, Fabiana Custódio; Barrella, Thomaz Henrique; da Silva, Reinaldo José

    2002-12-01

    Hepatozoon species are the most abundant hemoparasites of snakes. Its identification has been based mainly on the morphologic characterization of the gamonts in the peripheral blood of the vertebrate host and also of the cysts found in the internal organs of the vertebrate and invertebrate hosts. Using a computerized image analysis system, we studied five species of Hepatozoon from recently captured snakes in Botucatu, State of S o Paulo, Brazil, to evaluate the importance of the morphology and morphometry of the gamonts for the characterization of Hepatozoon species and to analyze the morphologic changes induced in the erythrocytes by the parasite. The studied species were H. terzii of Boa constrictor amarali, Hepatozoon sp. of Crotalus durissusterrificus, H. philodryasi of Philodryas patagoniensis, and H. migonei and H. cyclagrasi of Hydrodynastes gigas. We observed three different groups, one of them including the species H. terzii, H. philodryasi and Hepatozoon sp. of C. durissus terrificus; and the other two consisting of H. migonei and H. cyclagrasi. Degree of alterations in the erythrocytes was variable and it may be useful for characterization of Hepatozoon species.

  16. Sarcocystis oreamni, n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) from the mountain goat (Oreamnos americanus).

    PubMed

    Calero-Bernal, Rafael; Van Wilpe, Erna; White, Kevin; Verma, Shiv K; Cerqueira-Cézar, Camila K; Dubey, Jitender P

    2015-11-01

    Numerous species of Sarcocystis have been reported from wild ruminants, but none has been named from the Rocky Mountain goat (Oreamnos americanus). Mature sarcocysts were found in frozen muscle samples of three of seven mountain goats from Alaska, USA. Two morphological types of sarcocysts were found; one had Sarcocystis cornagliai-like sarcocysts, previously named from the Alpine ibex (Capra ibex) from Europe. Two other goats were infected with a new species, Sarcocystis oreamni. Sarcocystis oreamni sarcocysts were microscopic with 2 μm-thick sarcocyst wall. By transmission electron microscopy, the sarcocyst wall had 1.7 μm-thick with unusual molar tooth-like villar protrusions (vp), type 29. The vp had an electron dense core and two disc-shaped plaques at the tip with fine microtubules. Bradyzoites were 8.6-9.1 μm long. Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) identified in 18S rRNA, and 28S rRNA loci of rDNA regions that suggested S. oreamni molecularly apart from related species. The phylogenetic analysis based on 18S rRNA and 28S rRNA sequences suggested S. oreamni is related with Sarcocystis species that employ members of the Canidae family as their definitive host. PMID:26255900

  17. First report of Hepatozoon (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina) in caecilians, with description of a new species.

    PubMed

    Harris, D James; Damas-Moreira, Isabel; Maia, João P M C; Perera, Ana

    2014-02-01

    Hepatozoon spp. are identified for the first time in the amphibian order Gymnophiona, or caecilians, from the Seychelles island of Silhouette. Estimate of relationships derived from partial 18S rRNA gene sequences indicate these are not related to Hepatozoon spp. from frogs or to other Hepatozoon spp. from reptiles in the Seychelles. Assessment of mature gamonts from blood smears indicate that these can be recognized as a new species, Hepatozoon seychellensis n. sp.

  18. Sarcocystis cafferi n. sp. (Protozoa: Apicomplexa) from the African buffalo (Syncerus caffer).

    PubMed

    Dubey, J P; Lane, Emily P; van Wilpe, Erna; Suleman, Essa; Reininghaus, Bjorn; Verma, S K; Rosenthal, B M; Mtshali, Moses S

    2014-12-01

    Sarcocystis infections have been reported from the African buffalo ( Syncerus caffer ), but the species have not been named. Here we propose a new name Sarcocystis cafferi from the African buffalo. Histological examination of heart (92), skeletal muscle (36), and tongue (2) sections from 94 buffalos from the Greater Kruger National Park, South Africa, and a review of the literature revealed only 1 species of Sarcocystis in the African buffalo. Macrocysts were up to 12 mm long and 6 mm wide and were located in the neck muscles and overlying connective tissue. They were pale yellow; shaped like a lychee fruit stone or cashew nut; turgid or flaccid and oval to round (not fusiform). By light microscopy (LM) the sarcocyst wall was relatively thin. By scanning electron microscopy (SEM), the sarcocyst wall had a mesh-like structure with irregularly shaped villar protrusions (vp) that were of different sizes and folded over the sarcocyst wall. The entire surfaces of vp were covered with papillomatous structures. By transmission electron microscopy (TEM), the sarcocyst wall was up to 3.6 μm thick and had highly branched villar protrusions that were up to 3 μm long. The villar projections contained filamentous tubular structures, most of which were parallel to the long axis of the projections, but some tubules criss-crossed, especially at the base. Granules were absent from these tubules. Longitudinally cut bradyzoites were 12.1 × 2.7 μm in size, had a long convoluted mitochondrion, and only 2 rhoptries. Phylogenetic analysis of 18S rRNA and cytochrome C oxidase subunit 1 (cox1) gene sequences indicated that this Sarcocystis species is very closely related to, but distinct from, Sarcocystis fusiformis and Sarcocystis hirsuta. Thus, morphological findings by LM, SEM, and TEM together with molecular phylogenetic data (from 18S rRNA and cox1) confirm that the Sarcocystis species in the African buffalo is distinct from S. fusiformis and has therefore been named Sarcocystis cafferi. PMID:25026178

  19. Sarcocystis mehlhorni, n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) from the black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus columbianus).

    PubMed

    Calero-Bernal, Rafael; Verma, Shiv K; Cerqueira-Cézar, Camila K; Schafer, Laurence M; Van Wilpe, Erna; Dubey, Jitender P

    2015-12-01

    Infection with Sarcocystis is common in many species of wild cervids but none is reported from the black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus columbianus). Here, we report Sarcocystis infection in two black-tailed deer from northwest USA for the first time. Sarcocysts were microscopic, up to 556 μm long and mature. The sarcocyst wall was up to 1.39 μm thick and had rectangular 1.17-μm-long villar protrusions, type 17, with thin (230 nm) electron dense ground substance layer. Molecular characterization and phylogenetic analysis indicated that Sarcocystis in the black-tailed deer is related to structurally distinct Sarcocystis species in cervids. A new name, Sarcocystis mehlhorni, is proposed for the Sarcocystis species in black-tailed deer.

  20. Sarcocystis mehlhorni n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) from the black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus columbianus)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Infection with Sarcocystis is common in many species of wild cervids but none is reported from the black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemionus columbianus). Here, we report Sarcocystis infection in two black-tailed deer from northwest USA for the first time. Sarcocysts were microscopic, up to 556 µm long...

  1. CRYPTOSPORIDIUM HOMINIS N. SP (APICOMPLEXA : CRYPTOSPORIDIIDAE) FROM HOMO SAPIENS. (R826138)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  2. Theileria gilberti n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Theileriidae) in the Gilbert's potoroo (Potorous gilbertii).

    PubMed

    Lee, Jeremy Y; Ryan, Una M; Jefferies, Ryan; McInnes, Linda M; Forshaw, David; Friend, J Anthony; Irwin, Peter J

    2009-01-01

    The morphology and genetic characterisation of a new species of piroplasm identified in the blood of the Gilbert's potoroo (Potorous gilbertii) from the Two Peoples Bay Nature Reserve near Albany, Western Australia, is described from blood and tissue samples from 16 Gilbert's potoroos. Microscopy of blood showed these parasites are highly pleomorphic with a mean length of 1.8 mum and mean width of 0.85 mum. Phylogenetic analysis of 18S rRNA sequence data identified the piroplasm as a new species of Theileria that is closely related to other Australian marsupial piroplasm species. Based on biological and molecular data, it is proposed that the parasite from Gilbert's potoroo be given the name Theileria gilberti n. sp.

  3. Sarcocystis cafferi, n. sp. (Protozoa: Apicomplexa) from the African buffalo (Syncerus caffer)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Four species of Sarcocystis are currently recognized in the Asian water buffalo (Bubalus bubalis): Sarcocystis fusiformis with macrocysts and cats as definitive hosts, S. buffalonis also with macrocysts and cats as definitive hosts, S. levinei with microcysts and dogs as definitive hosts, and S. dub...

  4. Sarcocystis heydorni, n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Protozoa) with cattle (Bos taurus) and human (Homo sapiens) cycle

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Cattle (Bos taurus) are intermediate hosts for four species of Sarcocystis, S. cruzi, S. hirsuta, S. hominis, and S. rommeli. Of these four species, mature sarcocysts of S. cruzi are thin-walled (< 1µm) whereas S. hirsuta, S. hominis, and S. rommeli have thick walls (4 µm or more). Here we describe ...

  5. Molecular and morphologic characterization of Sarcocystis felis (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) in South American wild felids from Brazil.

    PubMed

    Cañón-Franco, William Alberto; López-Orozco, Natalia; Christoff, Alexandre Uarth; de Castilho, Camila Schlieper; de Araújo, Flavio Antônio Pacheco; Verma, Shiv Kumar; Dubey, J P; Soares, Rodrigo Martins; Gennari, Solange Maria

    2016-02-15

    Wild felids are thought to share parasites with domestic cats. However, little is known of the coccidian parasites of wild felids. We investigated the presence of Sarcocystis spp. in tissues of 6 species of 90 Neotropical small felids killed in road accidents in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil by using microscopic and molecular techniques. Formalin-fixed tissues from 28 felids were examined, and Sarcocystis felis-like sarcocysts were detected in 4 wild cats (2 Puma yagouaroundi and 2 Leopardus guttulus). By transmission electron microscopy, sarcocysts from a P. yagouaroundi were identical to S. felis from domestic cats in the USA. Direct sequencing of PCR amplicons resulted the unambiguous sequences of the ITS-1 region from 18 of the 31 PCR positive wild cats; 5 sequences from each P. yagouaroundi, and Leopardus geoffroyi, 4 sequences from L. guttulus, and 2 sequences from each Leopardus wiedii, and Leopardus colocolo. Sequences analysis of ITS-1 region revealed the highest identiy (97-99%) with that of previously describe isolates of S. felis from domestic cats in the USA and identified them as S. felis. Tissues of 1 Leopardus pardalis tested by PCR and histology were negative. The phylogenetic relationship indicated that S. felis is quite different to species which employ opossums as their definitive host. This is the first report of S. felis infection in small wild felids from Brazil. PMID:26827854

  6. Three new species of Coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from Skinks, Lipinia spp. (Sauria: Scincidae), from Oceania

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McAllister, Chris T.; Duszynski, Donald W.; Austin, Christopher C.; Fisher, Robert N.

    2013-01-01

    Between September 1991 and March 1993, 25 moth skinks (Lipinia noctua) were collected from various localities on the Cook Islands, Fiji, Papua New Guinea (PNG), and Vanuatu and examined for coccidians. In addition, a single Roux's lipinia skink (Lipinia rouxi) was collected from PNG and examined for coccidia. Sixteen (64%) L. noctua were found to harbor 2 new eimerians, and L. rouxi harbored another new Eimeria sp. Oocysts of Eimeria lipinia n. sp. from 9 (36%) L. noctua from the Cook Islands, Fiji, and PNG were subspherical with a bilayered wall and measured (L × W) 18.6 × 16.9 μm, with a L/W ratio of 1.1. Both micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent, but a polar granule was present. Oocysts of Eimeria melanesia n. sp. from 6 (24%) L. noctua from Fiji and Vanuatu and a single L. rouxi from PNG were subspherical to ellipsoidal with a bilayered wall and measured 19.8 × 17.5 μm, and L/W was 1.1. Both micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent, but a single or fragmented polar granule was present. Oocysts of Eimeria lessoni n. sp. from 1 (4%) L. noctua from PNG were cylindroidal with a bilayered wall and measured 28.1 × 15.7 μm, and L/W was 1.8. Both micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent, but a single polar granule was present. These represent the third report of Eimeria spp. reported from any host on PNG and the only coccidians, to our knowledge, ever described from L. noctua and L. rouxi and from the Cook Islands and Vanuatu.

  7. SARCOCYSTIS URSUSI, N. SP (APICOMPLEXA; SARCOCYSTIDAE) FROM THE BLACK BEAR (URSUS AMERICANUS)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Infection with Sarcocystis species is common in hervibores but is rare in bears. Histological sections of 374 black bears (Ursus americanus) from Pennsylvania were examined for sarcocysts. A total of 3 sarcocysts were found in 3 bears, 1 sarcocyst per section. Sarcocysts from 2 bears were considered...

  8. Enteric coccidia (Apicomplexa) in the small intestine of the northern spotted owl (Strix occidentalis caurina).

    PubMed

    Hoberg, E P; Cawthorn, R J; Hedstrom, O R

    1993-07-01

    Sporulated oocysts (mean dimensions = 13.0 x 10.8 microns) and sporocysts (11.3 x 5.5 microns) of a coccidian resembling Frenkelia sp. or Sarcocystis sp. were present in the lamina propria of the small intestine of a naturally-infected northern spotted owl (Strix occidentalis caurina) collected near Medford, Oregon (USA). Dimensions of these oocytes and sporocysts appear to be considerably smaller than those from other sarcocystid species with avian definitive hosts. Additionally, numerous developmental stages and unsporulated oocysts (mean dimensions 22.8 x 17.8 microns) of a possible species of Isospora also were observed in the intestinal epithelium. This constitutes the first report of enteric coccidia from spotted owls. Neither parasite appeared to cause the death of the bird. PMID:8355357

  9. The life cycle of Cryptosporidium baileyi n. sp. (Apicomplexa, Cryptosporidiidae) infecting chickens.

    PubMed

    Current, W L; Upton, S J; Haynes, T B

    1986-05-01

    The life cycle and morphology of a previously undescribed species of Cryptosporidium isolated from commercial broiler chickens is described. The prepatent period for Cryptosporidium baileyi n. sp. was three days post oral inoculation (PI) of oocysts, and the patent period was days 4-24 PI for chickens inoculated at two days of age and days 4-14 for chickens inoculated at one and six months of age. During the first three days PI, most developmental stages of C. baileyi were found in the microvillous region of enterocytes of the ileum and large intestine. By day 4 PI, most parasites occurred in enterocytes of the cloaca and bursa of Fabricius (BF). Mature Type I meronts with eight merozoites first appeared 12 h PI and measured 5.0 x 4.9 micrometers. Mature Type II meronts with four merozoites and a large granular residuum first appeared 48 h PI and measured 5.1 x 5.1 micrometers. Type III meronts with eight short merozoites and a large homogeneous residuum first appeared 72 h PI and measured 5.2 x 5.1 micrometers. Microgamonts (4.0 x 4.0 micrometers) produced approximately 16 microgametes that penetrated into macrogametes (4.7 x 4.7 micrometers). Macrogametes gave rise to two types of oocysts that sporulated within the host cells. Most were thick-walled oocysts (6.3 x 5.2 micrometers), the resistant forms that passed unaltered in the feces. Some were thin-walled oocysts whose wall (membrane) readily ruptured upon release from the host cell. Sporozoites from thin-walled oocysts were observed penetrating enterocytes in mucosal smears. The presence of thin-walled, autoinfective oocysts and the recycling of Type I meronts may explain why chickens develop heavy intestinal infections lasting up to 21 days. Oocysts of C. baileyi were inoculated orally into several animals to determine its host specificity. Cryptosporidium baileyi did not produce infections in suckling mice and goats or in two-day-old or two-week-old quail. One of six 10-day-old turkeys had small numbers of asexual stages only in the BF. Four of six one-day-old turkeys developed mild infections only in the BF, and sexual stages of the parasite were observed in only one of the four. All seven one-day-old ducks and seven two-day-old geese developed heavy infections only in the BF with all known developmental stages present. PMID:3735157

  10. Coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) of the lowland European bison Bison bonasus bonasus (L.).

    PubMed

    Pyziel, Anna M; Jóźwikowski, Michał; Demiaszkiewicz, Aleksander W

    2014-05-28

    Coprological studies conducted between 2007 and 2011 in free-roaming and captive European bison Bison bonasus (Linnaeus, 1758) from Poland revealed 11 species of Eimeria infecting the host, i.e., Eimeria alabamensis, Eimeria auburnensis, Eimeria bovis, Eimeria brasiliensis, Eimeria bukidnonensis, Eimeria canadensis, Eimeria cylindrica, Eimeria ellipsoidalis, Eimeria pellita, Eimeria subspherica, and Eimeria zuernii. The typical host for all isolated species is cattle. The most prevalent species was E. bovis (29.7%), while E. brasiliensis was the rarest (0.5%). Five of the species (E. bovis, E. bukidnonensis, E. canadensis, E. ellipsoidalis, E. zuernii) have been observed previously in bison by other authors, 3 species were noticed by us in bison previously (E. alabamensis, E. cylindrica, E. pellita), while for 3 species (E. auburnensis, E. brasiliensis, and E. subspherica) these are new host and locality records. Oocysts of two species (E. brasiliensis, E. bukidnonensis) were noted only in the feces of bison kept in captivity. Moreover, the prevalence of positive samples was higher in the group of captive animals (55.4%) in comparison with the free-roaming herds (29.5%); although, oocysts per gram (OPG), counted with the conventional McMaster technique, was comparable in both groups, reaching maximally 6550 and 6400 in free-roaming and captive individuals, respectively. Overall, 142 fecal samples from 424 samples examined were positive for Eimeria (prevalence=33.5%). Age-related analysis revealed a higher percentage of Eimeria spp. positive samples and higher OPG values in bison under 1 year old as compared to older individuals (93.3% and 50-4050; 37.3% and 50-550, respectively). Additionally, greater eimerian species diversity was present among calves in comparison with older bison. In most cases single-species infections were observed (59.8%) with a predominance of E. bovis (85.9%). Multiple-species infections consisted of 2-7 species, usually including E. bovis. The observation was made that E. bovis infection appears conducive to the host acquiring more eimerian species. No symptoms of clinical coccidiosis occurred during the study.

  11. Lipid biology of Apicomplexa: perspectives for new drug targets, particularly for Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Sonda, Sabrina; Hehl, Adrian B

    2006-01-01

    Development of effective therapies for intracellular eukaryotic pathogens is a serious challenge, given the protected location of these pathogens and the similarity of their biology to that of the host. Identifying cellular processes that are unique to the parasite is therefore a crucial step towards defining appropriate drug targets. In the case of the apicomplexan parasite Toxoplasma gondii, the need to find alternative treatments is imperative because of the poor tolerability and frequent side-effects associated with existing therapeutic strategies. The discovery that the parasite uses lipid synthetic pathways which are different from, or absent in, the mammalian host is now driving a renewed interest in T. gondii lipid biology. Recent achievements in this field are promising and suggest that the elucidation of lipid pathways will provide new opportunities for designing potent antiparasitic strategies. PMID:16300997

  12. Cryptosporidium huwi n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the guppy (Poecilia reticulata).

    PubMed

    Ryan, Una; Paparini, Andrea; Tong, Kaising; Yang, Rongchang; Gibson-Kueh, Susan; O'Hara, Amanda; Lymbery, Alan; Xiao, Lihua

    2015-03-01

    The morphological, biological, and molecular characteristics of Cryptosporidium piscine genotype 1 from the guppy (Poecilia reticulata) are described, and the species name Cryptosporidium huwi n. sp. is proposed to reflect its genetic and biological differences from gastric and intestinal Cryptosporidium species. Oocysts of C.huwi n. sp. over-lap in size with Cryptosporidium molnari, measuring approximately 4.4-4.9 µm (mean 4.6) by 4.0-4.8 µm (mean 4.4 µm) with a length to width ratio of 1.04 (0.92-1.35) (n = 50). Similar to C.molnari, C.huwi n. sp. was identified in the stomach only and clusters of oogonial and sporogonial stages were identified deep within the epithelium. However, phylogenetic analysis of 18S rRNA sequences indicated that C. huwi n. sp. exhibited 8.5-9.2% and 3.5% genetic distance from C.molnari isolates and piscine genotype 7 respectively. At the actin locus, the genetic distance between C.huwi n. sp. and C.molnari was 16.6%. The genetic distance between C.huwi n. sp. and other Cryptosporidium species at the 18S locus was 13.2%-17% and at the actin locus was 18.9%-26.3%. Therefore C. huwi n. sp. is genetically distinct from previously described Cryptosporidium species.

  13. Sarcocystis arctica (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae): ultrastructural description and its new host record, the Alaskan wolf (Canis lupus).

    PubMed

    Calero-Bernal, Rafael; Cerqueira-Cézar, Camila K; Verma, Shiv Kumar; Mowery, Joseph; Carmena, David; Beckmen, Kimberlee; Dubey, Jitender P

    2016-07-01

    Sarcocystis sarcocysts are common in muscles of herbivores but are rare in muscles of carnivores. Here, we report sarcocysts in the muscles of a gray wolf (Canis lupus) from Alaska, USA, for the first time. Sarcocysts extracted from the tongue of the wolf were up to 900 μm long and slender and appeared to have a relatively thin wall by light microscope. By transmission electron microscopy, the sarcocyst wall most closely resembled "type 9c," and had a wavy parasitophorous vacuolar membrane folded as pleomorphic villar protrusions (vp), with anastomoses of tips. The vp and the ground substance (gs) layer were smooth without tubules or granules. The gs was up to 2.0 μm thick. The total width of the wall including vp and the gs was 3.5 μm. The vp were up to 1.5 μm long. Mature sarcocysts contained numerous bradyzoites and few metrocytes. The bradyzoites were 9.5 μm long and 1.5 μm wide, and contained all organelles found in Sarcocystis bradyzoites with at least two rhoptries. Molecular characterization showed the highest identity for 18S rRNA, 28S rRNA, ITS-1, and cox1 sequences of Sarcocystis arctica of the Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) from Norway. The ultrastructure of S. arctica from the fox is unknown. Here, we provide ultrastructure of S. arctica from the Alaskan wolf for the first time. The definitive host of S. arctica remains unknown. PMID:27112760

  14. Cryptosporidium rubeyi n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporidiidae) in multiple Spermophilus ground squirrel species

    PubMed Central

    Li, Xunde; Pereira, Maria das Graças Cabral; Larsen, Royce; Xiao, Chengling; Phillips, Ralph; Striby, Karl; McCowan, Brenda; Atwill, Edward R.

    2015-01-01

    Previously we reported the unique Cryptosporidium sp. “c” genotype (e.g., Sbey03c, Sbey05c, Sbld05c, Sltl05c) from three species of Spermophilus ground squirrel (Spermophilus beecheyi, Spermophilus beldingi, Spermophilus lateralis) located throughout California, USA. This follow-up work characterizes the morphology and animal infectivity of this novel genotype as the final step in proposing it as a new species of Cryptosporidium. Analysis of sequences of 18S rRNA, actin, and HSP70 genes of additional Cryptosporidium isolates from recently sampled California ground squirrels (S. beecheyi) confirms the presence of the unique Sbey-c genotype in S. beecheyi. Phylogenetic and BLAST analysis indicates that the c-genotype in Spermophilus ground squirrels is distinct from Cryptosporidium species/genotypes from other host species currently available in GenBank. We propose to name this c-genotype found in Spermophilus ground squirrels as Cryptosporidium rubeyi n. sp. The mean size of C. rubeyi n. sp. oocysts is 4.67 (4.4–5.0) μm × 4.34 (4.0–5.0) μm, with a length/width index of 1.08 (n = 220). Oocysts of C. rubeyi n. sp. are not infectious to neonatal BALB/c mice and Holstein calves. GenBank accession numbers for C. rubeyi n. sp. are DQ295012, AY462233, and KM010224 for the 18S rRNA gene, KM010227 for the actin gene, and KM010229 for the HSP70 gene. PMID:26543805

  15. Note on the Taxonomy of Frenkelia microti (Findlay & Middleton, 1934) (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae).

    PubMed

    Modrý, David; Votýpka, Jan; Svobodová, Milena

    2004-07-01

    Based on biological, morphological and molecular data, species of Frenkelia Biocca, 1968 should be reclassified within the genus Sarcocystis Poche, 1913. This taxonomic change leads to the secondary homonymy of S. microti (Findlay & Middleton, 1934) n. comb. and S. microti Dubey, 1983. The recently suggested conspecificity and consequent synonymy of S. microti (Findlay & Middleton, 1934) and S. buteonis (Henry, 1932) is not really justifiable and thus S. microti (Findlay & Middleton, 1934) should be considered a valid species. S. jaypeedubeyi nom. nov. is, therefore, proposed as a nomen novum for S. microti Dubey, 1983 to alleviate the problem of this secondary homonymy.

  16. Sarcocystis cafferi n. sp. (Protozoa: Apicomplexa) from the African buffalo (Syncerus caffer).

    PubMed

    Dubey, J P; Lane, Emily P; van Wilpe, Erna; Suleman, Essa; Reininghaus, Bjorn; Verma, S K; Rosenthal, B M; Mtshali, Moses S

    2014-12-01

    Sarcocystis infections have been reported from the African buffalo ( Syncerus caffer ), but the species have not been named. Here we propose a new name Sarcocystis cafferi from the African buffalo. Histological examination of heart (92), skeletal muscle (36), and tongue (2) sections from 94 buffalos from the Greater Kruger National Park, South Africa, and a review of the literature revealed only 1 species of Sarcocystis in the African buffalo. Macrocysts were up to 12 mm long and 6 mm wide and were located in the neck muscles and overlying connective tissue. They were pale yellow; shaped like a lychee fruit stone or cashew nut; turgid or flaccid and oval to round (not fusiform). By light microscopy (LM) the sarcocyst wall was relatively thin. By scanning electron microscopy (SEM), the sarcocyst wall had a mesh-like structure with irregularly shaped villar protrusions (vp) that were of different sizes and folded over the sarcocyst wall. The entire surfaces of vp were covered with papillomatous structures. By transmission electron microscopy (TEM), the sarcocyst wall was up to 3.6 μm thick and had highly branched villar protrusions that were up to 3 μm long. The villar projections contained filamentous tubular structures, most of which were parallel to the long axis of the projections, but some tubules criss-crossed, especially at the base. Granules were absent from these tubules. Longitudinally cut bradyzoites were 12.1 × 2.7 μm in size, had a long convoluted mitochondrion, and only 2 rhoptries. Phylogenetic analysis of 18S rRNA and cytochrome C oxidase subunit 1 (cox1) gene sequences indicated that this Sarcocystis species is very closely related to, but distinct from, Sarcocystis fusiformis and Sarcocystis hirsuta. Thus, morphological findings by LM, SEM, and TEM together with molecular phylogenetic data (from 18S rRNA and cox1) confirm that the Sarcocystis species in the African buffalo is distinct from S. fusiformis and has therefore been named Sarcocystis cafferi.

  17. A new species of Cryptosporidium (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporidiidae) from eastern grey kangaroos (Macropus giganteus).

    PubMed

    Power, Michelle L; Ryan, Una M

    2008-10-01

    Cryptosporidium macropodum n. sp is described. Oocysts of C. macropodum from the feces of kangaroos (Macropus spp.) are morphologically indistinguishable from other mammalian Cryptosporidium species, including C. parvum, C. hominis, C. suis, and C. canis. The oocysts are fully sporulated on excretion, lack sporocysts, and have an average width of 4.9 microm (4.5-6.0), a length of 5.4 microm (5.0-6.0), and a length:width ratio of 1.1. Phylogenetic analyses of the 18S ribosomal RNA, actin, and heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) loci demonstrate that C. macropodum is genetically distinct from all described Cryptosporidium species, including others found in marsupials. The parasite seems to be highly host-specific, because it has been found only in marsupials to date. Therefore, based on biological and molecular data, we consider C. macropodum a new species.

  18. Hemosporid (Apicomplexa, Hematozoea, Hemosporida) community structure off pattern in wintering wild turkeys.

    PubMed

    Fedynich, A M; Rhodes, O E

    1995-07-01

    The hemosporid community of 76 wild turkeys (Meleagris gallopavo silvestris) from South Carolina (USA) was examined using thin blood smears collected during January and February 1994. High prevalences and low abundances of hemosporids characterized this community. Leucocytozoon smithi and Haemoproteus meleagridis occurred in 100% and 54% of the turkeys, respectively; a Plasmodium sp. was found in one bird. Prevalence of H. meleagridis was significantly higher in juvenile turkeys than adults, but prevalences did not differ significantly among four trap sites or by host sex. Mean (+/- SE) intensities of L. smithi, H. meleagridis, and Plasmodium sp. were 3.4 +/- 0.4, 1.8 +/- 0.3, and 3.0 per 10,000 erythrocytes, respectively. Abundances of L. smithi, H. meleagridis, and Plasmodium sp. were 3.4 +/- 0.9 +/- 0.2, and < 0.1 +/- < 0.1 per 10,000 erythrocytes, respectively. Juvenile turkeys had higher rank abundance values of L. smithi than adults, whereas no differences were found among trap sites or between sexes. No differences in rank abundances of H. meleagridis were found among trap sites, host age, or host sex variables. Collectively, both common hemosporid species varied by host age, reflecting higher abundances in juvenile turkeys. patterns of hemosporid prevalence appeared similar to patterns found in subtropical regions. Based on our data, we recommend using prevalence and abundance data to analyze the structure and pattern of hemosporid communities at the component community level.

  19. Coccidian parasites (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from insectivores. VI. Six new species from the eastern mole, Scalopus aquaticus.

    PubMed

    Ford, P L; Duszynski, D W

    1988-05-01

    Thirteen eastern moles, Scalopus aquaticus, collected in West Texas were examined for coccidian oocysts; 11 (85%) were infected and eight (73%) of these had multiple infections representing two or more species. One cyclosporan, three eimerians, and two isosporans were studied and all are described as new species. Sporulated oocysts of Cyclospora megacephali n. sp. were subspheroidal, 18.5 X 15.7 (14-21 X 12-18) microns; they had sporocysts pointed at one end with Stieda bodies nearly as wide as the sporocysts themselves, and were 15.0 X 7.2 (11-17 X 6-9) microns; C. megacephali was found in four (31%) hosts. Sporulated oocysts of Eimeria scalopi n. sp. were spheroidal to subspheroidal, 13.6 X 12.6 (11-17 X 11-15) microns with sporocysts lemon-shaped, 8.7 X 5.5 (7-10 X 4-7) microns; it was found in six (46%) hosts. Sporulated oocysts of Eimeria aquatici n. sp. were asymmetrically ellipsoidal, 17.0 X 10.6 (14-20 X 9-14) microns with sporocysts elongately ovoidal, 9.0 X 5.2 (8-11 X 4-6) microns; it was found in two (15%) hosts. Sporulated oocysts of Eimeria motleiensis n. sp. were subspheroidal, 17.0 X 15.3 (15-20 X 13-18) microns with sporocysts ovoidal, 10.7 X 6.8 (10-13 X 6-8) microns; it was found in seven (54%) hosts. Sporulated oocysts of Isospora motleiensis n. sp. were spheroidal to subspheroidal, 13.6 X 12.0 (10-17 X 8-15) microns with sporocysts broadly ovoidal, 9.5 X 6.7 (7-11 X 4-8) microns; it was found in nine (69%) hosts. Sporulated oocysts of Isospora aquatici n. sp. were subspheroidal, 20.9 X 18.4 (15-24 X 13-21) microns with sporocysts ellipsoidal, 11.8 X 9.0 (9-14 X 7-11) microns; it was found in two (15%) hosts.

  20. Coccidian parasites (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from insectivores. IV. Four new species in Talpa europaea from England.

    PubMed

    Duszynski, D W; Wattam, A R

    1988-02-01

    Moles from England were examined for coccidian oocysts and all 64 Talpa europaea were infected; of 64 infected hosts, 56 (88%) had multiple infections representing two to six coccidian species when examined. Oocysts in 31 of the 64 samples remainedunsporulated. Three eimerians and one isosporan were studied from the 33 fecal samples that had sporulated oocysts and these are described as new species; Cyclospora talpae Pellérdy & Tanyi, 1968, and Isospora sofiae (Golemansky, 1978) Levine & Ivens, 1979, are redescribed; and Cyclospora sp., similar to C. talpae, is discussed. Sporulated oocysts of C. talpae are ellipsoidal, 14.3 X 9.6 (12-19 X 6-13) microns with sporocysts ovoid, 9.4 X 5.7 (6-13 X 4-8) microns; it was found in 21 of the 33 (63.6%) sporulated samples. Sporulated oocysts of Cyclospora sp. are subspheroidal to ellipsoidal, 12.5 X 8.9 (10-14 X 6-12) microns with sporocysts ovoid, 8.6 X 5.3 (6-10 X 4-6) microns; it was found in 21 of the 33 (63.6%) sporulated samples. Sporulated oocysts of Eimeria avonensis n. sp. are elongate-ellipsoidal, 15.0 X 9.6 (13-20 X 7-12) microns with sporocysts ovoid, 6.6 X 3.6 (5-9 X 3-7) microns; it was found in 15 of the 33 (45.5%) sporulated samples. Sporulated oocysts of Eimeria berea n. sp. are subspheroidal, 12.1 X 10.5 (10-15 X 8-14) microns with sporocysts ovoid, 6.3 X 3.9 (5-10 X 2-5) microns; it was found in 8 of the 33 (24.2%) sporulated samples.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  1. Besnoitia neotomofelis n. sp. (Protozoa: Apicomplexa) from the southern plains woodrat (Neotoma micropus)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Certain species of the protozoan genus Besnoitia cause clinical disease in livestock and wildlife. In the present paper a new species, Besnoitia neotomofelis is described from the southern planes woodrat (Neotoma micropus). The parasite was detected by bioassay of woodrat tissues in out bred Swiss W...

  2. Eimeria biarmicus sp.n. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) infecting falcons from the genus Falco in Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Alfaleh, F A; Alyousif, M S; Al-Quraishy, S; Al-Shawa, Y R

    2012-05-01

    The oocysts of Eimeria biarmicus sp. n. were described from the feces of the lanner falcon, Falco biarmicus, collected from the falcon market in Riyadh City, Saudi Arabia. The prevalence of infection was 5% (2/40). The majority of the oocysts examined had completed sporulation within 84 h at 24 ± 2°C. Sporulated oocysts are ovoid in shape, measuring 22.4 × 17.9 (20.5-24.7 × 15.8-18.5) μm; shape index (L/W) is 1.25 (1.14-1.36) μm. The oocyst wall is smooth and bi-layered. Micropyle and oocyst residuum are absent. A polar granule is present, consisting of 2-4 globules. Sporocysts are ovoid, 10.1 × 6.1 (9.4-11.2 × 5.4-6.8) μm; with a smooth single-layered wall and a minute Stieda body, but there is no substieda body. The sporocyst residuum consists of numerous small granules. Sporozoites are comma shaped, each contains two refractile bodies. E. biarmicus sp. n. is the second eimerian species described from F. biarmicus.

  3. Caryospora biarmicusis sp.n. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) infecting falcons from the genus Falco in Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Alyousif, M S; Alfaleh, F A; Al-Shawa, Y R

    2011-04-01

    The oocysts of Caryospora biarmicusis sp.n. is described from the feces of the lanner falcon, Falco biarmicus, from the falcon market in Riyadh City, Saudi Arabia. Sporulated oocysts are ovoid in shape, measuring 40.2 x 34.7 (37.5-42.4 x 32.9-35.7) microm; shape index (L/W) is 1.16 (1.08-1.31) microm. The oocyst wall is smooth and bi-layered. Micropyle and polar granule are absent, but an oocyst residuum is present. Sporocysts are spheroid, 20.1 (18.6-21.3) microm; with a smooth single-layered wall, lacking Stieda body. Sporocyst residuum is present as numerous small granules. Sporozoites are stout with a large single refractile body.

  4. Individual oocysts of Isospora (Apicomplexa: Coccidia) parasites from avian feces: from photo to sequence.

    PubMed

    Dolnik, Olga V; Palinauskas, Vaidas; Bensch, Staffan

    2009-02-01

    Numerous microscopic studies of coccidian oocysts from avian feces have become the basis for species identification. In contrast, molecular studies of wild birds' Coccidia are still in their infancy and are mostly based on DNA extracted from the blood stages of these parasites. Linking microscopic and molecular data requires a method that reliably extracts DNA from single oocysts with parallel detailed morphological examination of the same cell. We offer a thorough manual of isolating, photographing, and trapping single oocysts from avian feces, followed by extraction of parasite DNA and amplification of mitochondrial DNA from the same cells. In 39 single oocysts from 6 wild blackcaps, we combined microscopic studies of individual cells with studies on their mitochondrial haplotype. In 72% of the single oocysts sampled, we detected unambiguous sequences. From feces and blood of investigated birds, we obtained 6 different haplotypes of Isospora sp. (iSAT1-iSAT 6), finding both the same haplotype in different host individuals and various haplotypes in the same host individual. Our described methodology enables linking the huge amount of morphological data with innovative gene analysis. This method expands the scope of genetic studies conducted on Isospora species, including routine molecular analysis of single oocysts isolated from fecal samples. PMID:19245285

  5. Sarcocystis oreamni, n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) from the mountain goat (Oreamnos americanus).

    PubMed

    Calero-Bernal, Rafael; Van Wilpe, Erna; White, Kevin; Verma, Shiv K; Cerqueira-Cézar, Camila K; Dubey, Jitender P

    2015-11-01

    Numerous species of Sarcocystis have been reported from wild ruminants, but none has been named from the Rocky Mountain goat (Oreamnos americanus). Mature sarcocysts were found in frozen muscle samples of three of seven mountain goats from Alaska, USA. Two morphological types of sarcocysts were found; one had Sarcocystis cornagliai-like sarcocysts, previously named from the Alpine ibex (Capra ibex) from Europe. Two other goats were infected with a new species, Sarcocystis oreamni. Sarcocystis oreamni sarcocysts were microscopic with 2 μm-thick sarcocyst wall. By transmission electron microscopy, the sarcocyst wall had 1.7 μm-thick with unusual molar tooth-like villar protrusions (vp), type 29. The vp had an electron dense core and two disc-shaped plaques at the tip with fine microtubules. Bradyzoites were 8.6-9.1 μm long. Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) identified in 18S rRNA, and 28S rRNA loci of rDNA regions that suggested S. oreamni molecularly apart from related species. The phylogenetic analysis based on 18S rRNA and 28S rRNA sequences suggested S. oreamni is related with Sarcocystis species that employ members of the Canidae family as their definitive host.

  6. Cryptosporidium rubeyi n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporidiidae) in multiple Spermophilus ground squirrel species.

    PubMed

    Li, Xunde; Pereira, Maria das Graças Cabral; Larsen, Royce; Xiao, Chengling; Phillips, Ralph; Striby, Karl; McCowan, Brenda; Atwill, Edward R

    2015-12-01

    Previously we reported the unique Cryptosporidium sp. "c" genotype (e.g., Sbey03c, Sbey05c, Sbld05c, Sltl05c) from three species of Spermophilus ground squirrel (Spermophilus beecheyi, Spermophilus beldingi, Spermophilus lateralis) located throughout California, USA. This follow-up work characterizes the morphology and animal infectivity of this novel genotype as the final step in proposing it as a new species of Cryptosporidium. Analysis of sequences of 18S rRNA, actin, and HSP70 genes of additional Cryptosporidium isolates from recently sampled California ground squirrels (S. beecheyi) confirms the presence of the unique Sbey-c genotype in S. beecheyi. Phylogenetic and BLAST analysis indicates that the c-genotype in Spermophilus ground squirrels is distinct from Cryptosporidium species/genotypes from other host species currently available in GenBank. We propose to name this c-genotype found in Spermophilus ground squirrels as Cryptosporidium rubeyi n. sp. The mean size of C. rubeyi n. sp. oocysts is 4.67 (4.4-5.0) μm × 4.34 (4.0-5.0) μm, with a length/width index of 1.08 (n = 220). Oocysts of C. rubeyi n. sp. are not infectious to neonatal BALB/c mice and Holstein calves. GenBank accession numbers for C. rubeyi n. sp. are DQ295012, AY462233, and KM010224 for the 18S rRNA gene, KM010227 for the actin gene, and KM010229 for the HSP70 gene.

  7. Apicomplexa primers amplify Proteromonas (Stramenopiles, Slopalinida, Proteromonadidae) in tissue and blood samples from lizards.

    PubMed

    Maia, João P M C; Gómez-Díaz, Elena; Harris, D James

    2012-12-01

    Microscopy has traditionally been the most common method in parasitological studies, but in recent years molecular screening has become increasingly frequent to detect protozoan parasites in a wide range of vertebrate hosts and vectors. During routine molecular screening of apicomplexan parasites in reptiles using the 18S rRNA gene, we have amplified and sequenced Proteromonas parasites from three lizard hosts (less than 1% prevalence). We conducted phylogenetic analysis to confirm the taxonomic position and infer their relationships with other stramenopiles. Although our phylogeny is limited due to scarcity of molecular data on these protists, our results confirm they are closely related to Proteromonas lacertae. Our findings show that unexpected parasites can be amplified from host samples (blood and tissue) using general procedures to detect hemoparasites, and stress that positive PCR amplifications alone should not be considered as definitive proof of infection by particular parasites. Further validation by sequence confirmation and thorough phylogenetic assessment will not only avoid false positives and biased prevalence estimates but also provide valuable information on the biodiversity and phylogenetic relationships of other parasitic organisms. More generally, our results illustrate the perils of general diagnosis protocols in parasitological studies and the need of cross-validation procedures.

  8. Molecular characterisation of Cryptosporidium (Apicomplexa) in children and cattle in Romania.

    PubMed

    Vieira, Patricia Manuela; Mederle, Narcisa; Lobo, Maria Luisa; Imre, Kalman; Mederle, Ovidiu; Xiao, Lihua; Darabus, Gheorghe; Matos, Olga

    2015-01-01

    To investigate the transmission of species of Cryptosporidium Tyzzer, 1907 in Timis County, Romania, 48 isolates of Cryptosporidium coccidia from 11 children, 29 calves and eight pigs were characterised by molecular analysis of two loci (SSU rRNA and 60-kDa glycoprotein gene). Overall, 22 isolates were amplified and sequence analyses revealed that all isolates were Cryptosporidium parvum Tyzzer, 1912. Two subtype families were identified, IIa and IId. Subtype IIdA22G1 (n = 4) was the single C. parvum subtype found in children. Subtypes found in calves included IIdA27G1 (n = 8), a novel subtype, IIdA25G1 (n = 5), IIdA22G1 (n = 2), IIdA21G1a (n = 1), and IIaA16G1R1 (n = 1). Subtype IIdA26G1 was found in a pig. These results were significantly different from previous Romanian reports, as the five subtypes of family IId identified in this study were never identified previously in this country. Thus, cattle may be a source of Cryptosporidium infections for humans and the transmission dynamics of C. parvum in Romania is more complex than previously believed.

  9. KLOSSIELLA DULCIS N. SP. (APICOMPLEXA: KLOSSIELLIDAE) IN THE KIDNEYS OF PETAURUS BREVICEPS (MARSUPIALIA: PETAURIDAE).

    PubMed

    Ardiaca, Maria; Bennett, Mark D; Montesinos, Andres; Juan-Sallés, Carles; Soriano-Navarro, Mario

    2016-06-01

    Two cases of renal klossiellosis were diagnosed by histopathology in pet sugar gliders (Petaurus breviceps). In both cases, parasites were associated with tubular dilation and mild interstitial nephritis. Rare schizonts were seen in the proximal convoluted renal tubular epithelium, whereas all other life cycle stages were found within distal convoluted tubule cells or the urinary space of the structures distal to the loop of Henle. Conventional optical and transmission electron microscopies were used to assess the life stages of the parasite. The morphologic characteristics and measurements observed differ from those of previously described species of Klossiella infecting marsupial hosts, and the name Klossiella dulcis n. sp. is hereby proposed. This is the first report of a Klossiella sp. infection in Petaurus breviceps .

  10. Cryptosporidium scrofarum n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporidiidae) in domestic pigs (Sus scrofa)

    PubMed Central

    Kváč, Martin; Kestřánová, Michaela; Pinková, Martina; Květoňová, Dana; Kalinová, Jana; Wagnerová, Pavla; Kotková, Michaela; Vítovec, Jiří; Ditrich, Oleg; McEvoy, John; Stenger, Brianna; Sak, Bohumil

    2012-01-01

    We describe the morphological, biological, and molecular characteristics of Cryptosporidium pig genotype II and propose the species name Cryptosporidium scrofarum n. sp. to reflect its prevalence in adult pigs worldwide. Oocysts of C. scrofarum are morphologically indistinguishable from C. parvum, measuring 4.81–5.96 µm (mean = 5.16) × 4.23–5.29 µm (mean = 4.83) with a length to width ratio of 1.07 ± 0.06 (n = 400). Oocysts of C. scrofarum obtained from a naturally infected pig were infectious for 8-week-old pigs but not 4-week-old pigs. The prepatent period in 8-week-old Cryptosporidium-naive pigs was 4–6 days and the patent period was longer than 30 days. The infection intensity of C. scrofarum in pigs was generally low, in the range 250-4000 oocysts per gram of faeces. Infected pigs showed no clinical signs of cryptosporidiosis and no pathology was detected. Cryptosporidium scrofarum was not infectious for adult SCID mice, adult BALB c mice, Mongolian gerbils (Meriones unguiculatus), southern multimammate mice (Mastomys coucha), yellow-necked mice (Apodemus flavicollis), or guinea pigs (Cavia porcellus). Phylogenetic analyses based on Small subunit rRNA, actin, and heat shock protein 70 gene sequences revealed that C. scrofarum is genetically distinct from all known Cryptosporidium species. PMID:23021264

  11. [Species of the genus Eimeria (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) in giant anteaters (Myrmecophaga tridactyla Linnaeus, 1758) in captivity].

    PubMed

    Freitas, Fagner Luiz da C; Almeida, Katyane de S; Zanetti, André S; do Nascimento, Adjair A; Machado, Cé Lio R; Machado, Rosangela Z

    2006-01-01

    The parasitism of the two giant anteaters adults (Myrmecophaga tridactyla), one male and one female, infected naturally with Eimeria escomeli, E. tamanduae e E. marajoensis was related in the present research. In E. escomeli oocysts were 23.9 +/- 1.89 by 19.7 +/- 1.60 microm and its sporocysts were 11.47 +/- 1.25 by 6.48 +/- 0.80 microm. In E. tamanduae oocysts were 23.52 +/- 0.95 by 20.59 +/- 0.92 microm and its sporocysts were 12.19 +/- 0.65 by 7.15 +/- 0.55 microm. In E. marajoensis oocysts were 13.5 +/- 1.7 by 13.1 +/- 1.8 microm and its sporocysts were 7.4 +/- 0.58 by 5.4 +/- 0.8 microm. Eimeria escomeli was described before parasitizing giants anteater from Bolivia, and it was point out as the first time in Brazil. The presence of E. tamanduae and E. marajoensis parasitizing giant anteaters indicate the possibility of having co-infection of them among animals of the family Myrmecophagidae.

  12. Experimental Infection with Sporulated Oocysts of Eimeria maxima (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) in Broiler

    PubMed Central

    Brito, Luciana da S.; Pereira, Elder N.; da Silva, Augusta A.; Bentivóglio Costa Silva, Vinícius; Freitas, Fagner L. da C.

    2014-01-01

    Through this study we assessed the metabolic and pathological changes in broilers experimentally infected with oocysts of Eimeria maxima. To perform the experiment, we used 150 broiler strain cooB males, with ten days of age, were randomized according to weight and randomly assigned to two experimental groups: the control group was inoculated with 0.5 mL of distilled water; the infected group inoculated with 0.5 mL of solution containing 5 × 104 sporulated oocysts of Eimeria maxima. The live performance was evaluated on day 0 (day of inoculation), 5°, 10°, 15°, 25°, and 35° dpi, being slaughtered by cervical dislocation, fifteen birds/group. Although the sum in meat production was higher in the control group, the weight of the heart and gizzard of the experimental animals showed no significant difference, while the liver had difference on day 5°, 15°, and 35° dpi. The pathologic evaluation showed congested mucosa and presence of large amounts of mucus at 6 dpi. Therefore, it is concluded that the dose of 5 × 104 E. maxima inoculated in the experimental group was enough to cause harm to the animal organism. PMID:26464925

  13. Parasitization by Sauroplasma sp. (Apicomplexa: Haemohormidiidae) in Chelonian Podocnemis expansa (Testudines: Podocnemididae) in the Brazilian Amazon.

    PubMed

    Picelli, Amanda M; Carvalho, Aluísio V; Viana, Lúcio A; Malvasio, Adriana

    2016-02-01

    The prevalence and parasitemia of the piroplasm Sauroplasma sp. were evaluated in the Amazon chelonian Podocnemis expansa in Brazil. Samples were collected from 75 chelonians from 3 locations, including a commercial breeding facility, an indigenous subsistence breeding facility, and a wild population. Sauroplasma were found in 72% (54/75) of the chelonians, and the prevalence varied among the sampling sites. No significant correlations were found between the prevalence and the sex and body condition index of the chelonians. The mean parasitemia rate was 44.14/2,000 erythrocytes (2.2%), and no significant correlation was found between the parasitemia and sex and body condition index of the chelonians. These results suggest that the parasite is not pathogenic to P. expansa. No ectoparasites were found in the animals evaluated in the present study; however, due to the aquatic habit of the chelonian, it is likely that the piroplasm is transmitted by leeches and not by ticks, as would be expected for piroplasms. PMID:26561340

  14. Molecular survey of Apicomplexa in Podarcis wall lizards detects Hepatozoon, Sarcocystis, and Eimeria species.

    PubMed

    Harris, D James; Maia, João P M C; Perera, Ana

    2012-06-01

    The occurrence of apicomplexan parasites in Podarcis sp. wall lizards from the Iberian Peninsula and Balearic islands was studied by amplification and sequencing of the 18S rRNA gene. Species from 3 genera, Hepatozoon , Sarcocystis , and Eimeria , were found. The phylogenetic analysis of the 18S rRNA gene provides unexpected insights into the evolutionary history of these parasites. All Hepatozoon spp. specimens were recovered as part of a clade already identified in lizards from North Africa. The Sarcocystis species, detected in Podarcis lilfordi from Cabrera Island in the Balearic Islands, appears related to Sarcocystis gallotiae , known only from endemic Gallotia sp. lizards from the Canary Islands. Based on the lack of snake predators on this island, this parasite presumably presents an atypical transmission cycle that uses the same host species as both intermediate and final host through cannibalism, like S. gallotiae . Eimeria sp. is reported for the first time from Podarcis spp. lizards. This study shows the power of detecting multiple different apicomplexan parasites through screening of tail tissue samples and blood drops that are often collected in reptiles for other purposes. PMID:22746392

  15. First report of Hepatozoon (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina) in caecilians, with description of a new species.

    PubMed

    Harris, D James; Damas-Moreira, Isabel; Maia, João P M C; Perera, Ana

    2014-02-01

    Hepatozoon spp. are identified for the first time in the amphibian order Gymnophiona, or caecilians, from the Seychelles island of Silhouette. Estimate of relationships derived from partial 18S rRNA gene sequences indicate these are not related to Hepatozoon spp. from frogs or to other Hepatozoon spp. from reptiles in the Seychelles. Assessment of mature gamonts from blood smears indicate that these can be recognized as a new species, Hepatozoon seychellensis n. sp. PMID:23971488

  16. CRYPTOSPORIDIUM ANDERSONI N. SP. (APICOMPLEXA: CRYPTOSPORIDIIDAE) FROM CATTLE, BOS TAURUS. (R825148)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The perspectives, information and conclusions conveyed in research project abstracts, progress reports, final reports, journal abstracts and journal publications convey the viewpoints of the principal investigator and may not represent the views and policies of ORD and EPA. Concl...

  17. Leucocytozoon (Apicomplexa: Leucocytozoidae) from West African birds, with descriptions of two species.

    PubMed

    Jones, Hugh I; Sehgal, Ravinder N M; Smith, Thomas B

    2005-04-01

    Five species of Leucocytozoon were recovered from 35/828 birds of 95 species examined from 6 sites in West Africa between May 1995 and June 2001. Leucocytozoon pogoniuli n. sp. is described from the tinker barbets Pogoniulus subsulphureus and Pogoniulus atroflavus. Leucocytozoon trachyphoni n. sp. is described from the barbet Trachyphonus purpureus. No leucocytozoids have been reported previously in species of Pogoniulus. Leucocytozoon nectariniae was identified from the sunbird Nectarinia olivacea, and Leucocytozoon brimonti was recovered from 4 species of Pycnonotidae (bulbuls), all of which are new host records. We also report the first Leucocytozoon to be recovered from the phylogenetically isolated bird, Picathartes sp. (Picathartidae). This parasite is similar in appearance to Leucocytozoon sakharoffi, and probably represents a previously undescribed species. In view of the intraspecific variability and, frequently, relatively minor interspecific differences within Leucocytozoidae, we suggest that the development and application of molecular techniques would greatly advance understanding of speciation and relationships within this family.

  18. Sarcocystis rommeli, n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) from Cattle (Bos taurus) and its Differentiation from Sarcocystis hominis.

    PubMed

    Dubey, Jitender P; Moré, Gastón; van Wilpe, Erna; Calero-Bernal, Rafael; Verma, Shiv K; Schares, Gereon

    2016-01-01

    Cattle (Bos taurus) are intermediate hosts for three named species of Sarcocystis, S. cruzi, S. hirsuta, and S. hominis. Recently, a fourth species was identified and named S. sinensis. However, S. sinensis originally named a species of Sarcocystis in water buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) in China. Based on unverifiable evidence, it was suggested that the same parasite infects cattle. In addition, S. sinensis was recently declared as nomen nudum because its naming violated the rules of International Code of Zoological Nomenclature. Thus, the fourth species using cattle as an intermediate host does not have a valid name. Here, we propose a new name, Sarcocystis rommeli for the S. sinensis-like parasite from cattle in Argentina, and differentiate it ultrastructurally from S. hominis sarcocysts from experimentally infected cattle. Sarcocystis rommeli sarcocysts were microscopic with a 5-μm-thick wall with slender villar protrusions (Vp); the Vp were up to 5 μm long, up to 0.5 μm wide, and of uneven thickness, often bent at an angle. The ground substance layer (Gs) was up to 0.8 μm thick and smooth. Vesicular structures were seen at the base of the Vp. The bradyzoites were 10-12 μm long. Sarcocystis hominis sarcocysts had Vp that were often upright, up to 7.5 μm long, and up to 1.8 μm wide; the Gs was up to 2 μm thick and without vesicles. Its sarcocyst wall was up to 5.6 μm thick, the vp were bent at an angle, up to 5.8 μm long, the Gs was up to 2 μm thick, but without vesicles seen in S. rommeli. Beef containing sarcocysts of S. rommeli was not orally infectious for two human volunteers and a red fox (Vulpes vulpes). The Sarcocystis described here is molecularly different from S. cruzi, S. hirsuta, and S. hominis based on 18S rRNA and cox1 gene sequences.

  19. Haemogregarines of the genus Hepatozoon (Apicomplexa: Adeleina) in rodents from northern Europe.

    PubMed

    Laakkonen, J; Sukura, A; Oksanen, A; Henttonen, H; Soveri, T

    2001-01-01

    We studied the prevalence and distribution of Hepatozoon infections in small rodents from Finland and other areas in northern Europe. Hepatozoon infections were more common in voles (Arvicolinae) than mice (Murinae) and more prevalent in voles of the genus Clethrionomys than in voles of the genus Microtus. Transmission electron microscopical examination of Hepatozoon erhardovae Krampitz, 1964 from bank voles Clethrionomys glareolus (Schreber) showed that intracellular lung meronts were located in alveolar septa. Meronts consisted of varying numbers of merozoites packed with amylopectin vacuoles inside electron-lucent parasitophorous vacuole. The size of the meronts was approximately 19 x 14 microm. Monozoic or dizoic cysts were frequent findings in the lung alveoles; the size of cysts was approximately 10 x 6 microm. Gametocytes were found inside eosinophilic granulocytes in the capillaries of lung tissue. Ultrastructurally, micronemes, microtubules, mitochondria, nuclei and lipid droplets were visible. PMID:11817449

  20. Development of Eimeria nieschulzi (Coccidia, Apicomplexa) Gamonts and Oocysts in Primary Fetal Rat Cells.

    PubMed

    Chen, Hong; Wiedmer, Stefanie; Hanig, Sacha; Entzeroth, Rolf; Kurth, Michael

    2013-01-01

    The in vitro production of gametocytes and oocysts of the apicomplexan parasite genus Eimeria is still a challenge in coccidiosis research. Until today, an in vitro development of gametocytes or oocysts had only been shown in some Eimeria species. For several mammalian Eimeria species, partial developments could be achieved in different cell types, but a development up to gametocytes or oocysts is still lacking. This study compares several permanent cell lines with primary fetal cells of the black rat (Rattus norvegicus) concerning the qualitative in vitro development of the rat parasite Eimeria nieschulzi. With the help of transgenic parasites, the developmental progress was documented. The selected Eimeria nieschulzi strain constitutively expresses the yellow fluorescent protein and a macrogamont specific upregulated red tandem dimer tomato. In the majority of all investigated host cells the development stopped at the second merozoite stage. In a mixed culture of cells derived from inner fetal organs the development of schizont generations I-IV, macrogamonts, and oocysts were observed in crypt-like organoid structures. Microgamonts and microgametes could not be observed and oocysts did not sporulate under air supply. By immunohistology, we could confirm that wild-type E. nieschulzi stages can be found in the crypts of the small intestine. The results of this study may be helpful for characterization of native host cells and for development of an in vitro cultivation system for Eimeria species. PMID:23862053

  1. KLOSSIELLA DULCIS N. SP. (APICOMPLEXA: KLOSSIELLIDAE) IN THE KIDNEYS OF PETAURUS BREVICEPS (MARSUPIALIA: PETAURIDAE).

    PubMed

    Ardiaca, Maria; Bennett, Mark D; Montesinos, Andres; Juan-Sallés, Carles; Soriano-Navarro, Mario

    2016-06-01

    Two cases of renal klossiellosis were diagnosed by histopathology in pet sugar gliders (Petaurus breviceps). In both cases, parasites were associated with tubular dilation and mild interstitial nephritis. Rare schizonts were seen in the proximal convoluted renal tubular epithelium, whereas all other life cycle stages were found within distal convoluted tubule cells or the urinary space of the structures distal to the loop of Henle. Conventional optical and transmission electron microscopies were used to assess the life stages of the parasite. The morphologic characteristics and measurements observed differ from those of previously described species of Klossiella infecting marsupial hosts, and the name Klossiella dulcis n. sp. is hereby proposed. This is the first report of a Klossiella sp. infection in Petaurus breviceps . PMID:27468038

  2. The good, the bad and the ugly: Emys trinacris, Placobdella costata and Haemogregarina stepanowi in Sicily (Testudines, Annelida and Apicomplexa).

    PubMed

    Arizza, Vincenzo; Sacco, Francesco; Russo, Debora; Scardino, Rita; Arculeo, Marco; Vamberger, Melita; Marrone, Federico

    2016-01-01

    Endemic Sicilian pond turtles Emys trinacris Fritz, Fattizzo, Guicking, Tripepi, Pennisi, Lenk, Joger et Wink were examined for the presence of haemogregarine parasites. The presence of haemogregarines, occurring mainly in the microgametocyte stage (13.2 ± 0.12 μm in length and 6.4 ± 0.52 μm in width), was observed in approximately 9% of the sampled E. trinacris. Based on the observed morphology and on the sequencing of nuclear 18S rDNA, we identified the parasite as Haemogregarina stepanowi Danilewsky, 1885. Morphometric study of uninfected and infected red blood cells has shown that H. stepanowi induces different changes in erythrocyte shape depending on the infective stage. The differential count of leukocytes in specimens infected with H. stepanowi showed no significant difference compared with healthy specimens. However, considering the health problems which might be induced by H. stepanowi in the closely related European pond turtle Emys orbicularis (Linneaus), monitoring of the health status of the infected Sicilian populations of E. trinacris is desirable. The restricted distribution of populations of Emys infected with haemogregarines in Sicily is quite puzzling and the possible human-mediated introduction of the parasite in Sicily is briefly discussed. PMID:27579559

  3. Red and Problematic Green Phylogenetic Signals among Thousands of Nuclear Genes from the Photosynthetic and Apicomplexa-Related Chromera velia

    PubMed Central

    Woehle, Christian; Dagan, Tal; Martin, William F.; Gould, Sven B.

    2011-01-01

    The photosynthetic and basal apicomplexan Chromera velia was recently described, expanding the membership of this otherwise nonphotosynthetic group of parasite protists. Apicomplexans are alveolates with secondary plastids of red algal origin, but the evolutionary history of their nuclear genes is still actively discussed. Using deep sequencing of expressed genes, we investigated the phylogenetic affinities of a stringent filtered set of 3,151 expressed sequence tag-contigs by generating clusters with eukaryotic homologs and constructing phylogenetic trees and networks. The phylogenetic positioning of this alveolate alga was determined and sets of phyla-specific proteins extracted. Phylogenetic trees provided conflicting signals, with 444 trees grouping C. velia with the apicomplexans but 354 trees grouping C. velia with the alveolate oyster pathogen Perkinsus marinus, the latter signal being reinforced from the analysis of shared genes and overall sequence similarity. Among the 513 C. velia nuclear genes that reflect a photosynthetic ancestry and for which nuclear homologs were available both from red and green lineages, 263 indicated a red photosynthetic ancestry, whereas 250 indicated a green photosynthetic ancestry. The same 1:1 signal ratio was found among the putative 255 nuclear-encoded plastid proteins identified. This finding of red and green signals for the alveolate mirrors the result observed in the heterokont lineage and supports a common but not necessarily single origin for the plastid in heterokonts and alveolates. The inference of green endosymbiosis preceding red plastid acquisition in these lineages leads to worryingly complicated evolutionary scenarios, prompting the search for other explanations for the green phylogenetic signal and the amount of hosts involved. PMID:21965651

  4. Coccidia of the collared peccary (Tayassu tajacu) in southern Texas with descriptions of three new species of Eimeria (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae).

    PubMed

    Wilber, P G; Hellgren, E C; Gabor, T M

    1996-08-01

    In February 1993, fresh fecal samples were collected from 47 collared peccaries (Tayassu tajacu) killed by hunters at the Chaparral Wildlife Management Area, southern Texas, USA. Five species of coccidia (Eimeria chaparralensis n. sp. [9/47, 19%], Eimeria dicotylensis n. sp. [21/47, 21%], Eimeria pecari n. sp. [2/47, 4%], Eimeria sp. [1/47, 2%], and Klossia sp. [1/47, 2%]) were observed. Measurements are in micron. Sporulated oocysts of E. chaparralensis are rough-walled, elongate ovoidal, 43.3 x 28.5 (37-52 x 26-35); sporocysts are elongate ellipsoidal 21.8 x 9.0 (16-27 x 7-12); micropyle (approximately 4.9), Stieda, and substieda body are present; sporocyst residuum is present in newly sporulated oocysts; polar granule and oocyst residuum are absent. Sporulated oocysts of E. dicotylensis are smooth-walled, ovoidal, 25.7 x 20.1 (23-29 x 17-23); sporocysts are ellipsoidal 13.0 x 6.9 (11-17 x 6-9); micropyle and oocyst residuum are absent; polar body sometimes present; Stieda body and sporocyst residuum always present. Sporulated oocysts of E. pecari are smooth-walled, elongate ellipsoidal, 26.8 x 18.1 (22-31 x 15-21); sporocysts are elongate ellipsoidal 16.4 x 5.9 (13-22 x 4-7); micropyle (approximately 5.8) with collar, Stieda body, substieda body, and sporocyst residuum are present; polar granule and small oocyst residuum sometimes present. There were no sex or age differences in prevalences of infection, and there were no positive or negative associations between any species of eimerian. The majority of hosts were infected with a single species of Eimeria. Overall prevalence of infection with eimerians was 23/47 (49%).

  5. Novel anti-infective molecule from innate immune cells as an antibiotic-alternative to control infections caused by Apicomplexa

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    With increasing needs for the global animal industry to address the regulatory restrictions on the use of antibiotic growth promoters (AGPs) in animal production, there is much interest to find alternatives to AGPs. To develop alternatives to antibiotics against the major poultry parasitic disease, ...

  6. A new eimerian species (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the blue-fronted Amazon parrot Amazona aestiva L. (Aves: Psittacidae) in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Hofstatter, P G; Guaraldo, A M A

    2011-12-01

    The Neotropical psittacine species Amazona aestiva, commonly known as the blue-fronted Amazon, is one of the most common and best-known psittacine birds kept as a pet worldwide. However, very little is known about the diseases or parasites of these birds. In this study, we describe a new species, Eimeria aestivae, associated with these parrots. The new species is characterized by: ovoid smooth oocysts (n  =  60), 36.8 (33.2-41.5) × 23.7 (21.7-25.7) µm, length/width ratio  =  1.55; polar granule present; ellipsoidal sporocysts (n  =  25), 19.8 (17.5-21.6) × 9.3 (8.3-9.9) µm; Stieda, sub-Stieda body, and sporocyst residuum present. Sporozoites (n  =  20), 2 per sporocyst, elongate and curved, 17.6 (15.8-19.2) × 3.8 (3.2-4.8) µm; each with 2 refractile bodies. The oocysts of the other 2 eimerian species described for Amazona are larger than those of the presented species, but they all seem to be closely related because of some similarities among them.

  7. Two new species of Eimeria (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from eastern red bats, Lasiurus borealis (Chiroptera: Vespertilionidae), in Arkansas and North Carolina.

    PubMed

    McAllister, Chris T; Upton, Steve J

    2009-08-01

    During August 2003 and August 2004, 11 adult eastern red bats, Lasiurus borealis, were collected and their feces examined for coccidian parasites. Bats were obtained in August 2003 from Garland, Montgomery, and Yell counties, Arkansas (n=6) and in August 2004 from Anson and Montgomery counties, North Carolina (n=5). Seven (63.6%) of the bats were passing oocysts of 2 undescribed species of Eimeria. Oocysts of Eimeria dowleri n. sp. were subspherical to ellipsoidal, 24.7 x 22.0 (23-26 x 20-23) microm, with a bilayered wall, externally moderately pitted, internally smooth, and with a shape index of 1.1. Micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent, but a polar granule was present. Sporocysts were ovoidal, 13.4 x 9.2 (12-14 x 8-9) pm; shape index was 1.5; Stieda and sub-Stieda bodies were present. A sporocyst residuum consisting of homogeneous granules was scattered among the sporozoites; sporozoites were elongate, with a subspherical anterior refractile body and an elongate posterior refractile body; a nucleus was not discernable. Oocysts of Eimeria sealanderi n. sp. were subspherical to ellipsoidal, 16.7 x 14.4 (15-18 x 13-16) microm, with a bilayered wall, externally lightly pitted, internally smooth, and with a shape index of 1.2. A micropyle was absent, but the oocyst residuum and polar granule were present. Oocyst residuum consisted of a single, membrane-bound homogenous granule. Sporocysts were ovoidal, 8.9 x 5.7 (8-10 x 5-6) microm, with a shape index of 1.6; Stieda and sub-Stieda bodies were present. The sporocyst residuum consisted of 10, to several dozen, homogeneous granules of various sizes loosely clustered among the sporozoites, which were elongate and without obvious refractile bodies and nucleus. This is the first time any coccidian has been reported from this host and the first instance of a bat coccidian reported from North Carolina.

  8. Seasonal variation of Hepatozoon spp. (Apicomplexa, Hepatozoidae) parasitemia from Boa constrictor amarali (Serpentes, Boidae) and Hydrodynastes gigas (Serpentes, Colubridae).

    PubMed

    de Vieira Santos, Mariana Morena; O'Dwyer, Lucia Helena; da Silva, Reinaldo José

    2005-09-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the parasitemia variation of three Hepatozoon species in Brazilian snakes. This study was conducted between 2001 and 2003 and included Hepatozoon terzii from Boa constrictor amarali, and Hepatozoon migonei and Hepatozoon cyclagrasi from Hydrodynastes gigas. It was observed that the parasitemia tended to decrease in all three Hepatozoon species but the parasites were not eliminated. This data suggest that Hepatozoon infection may be similar to Toxoplasma gondii infection, in that it persists throughout host life.

  9. A new species of Hepatozoon (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina) from Python regius (Serpentes: Pythonidae) and its experimental transmission by a mosquito vector.

    PubMed

    Sloboda, Michal; Kamler, Martin; Bulantová, Jana; Votýpka, Jan; Modrý, David

    2007-10-01

    Hepatozoon ayorgbor n. sp. is described from specimens of Python regius imported from Ghana. Gametocytes were found in the peripheral blood of 43 of 55 snakes examined. Localization of gametocytes was mainly inside the erythrocytes; free gametocytes were found in 15 (34.9%) positive specimens. Infections of laboratory-reared Culex quinquefasciatus feeding on infected snakes, as well as experimental infection of juvenile Python regius by ingestion of infected mosquitoes, were performed to complete the life cycle. Similarly, transmission to different snake species (Boa constrictor and Lamprophis fuliginosus) and lizards (Lepidodactylus lugubris) was performed to assess the host specificity. Isolates were compared with Hepatozoon species from sub-Saharan reptiles and described as a new species based on the morphology, phylogenetic analysis, and a complete life cycle.

  10. Cryptosporidium proliferans n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporidiidae): Molecular and Biological Evidence of Cryptic Species within Gastric Cryptosporidium of Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Kváč, Martin; Havrdová, Nikola; Hlásková, Lenka; Daňková, Tereza; Kanděra, Jiří; Ježková, Jana; Vítovec, Jiří; Sak, Bohumil; Ortega, Ynes; Xiao, Lihua; Modrý, David; Chelladurai, Jeba Rose Jennifer Jesudoss; Prantlová, Veronika; McEvoy, John

    2016-01-01

    The morphological, biological, and molecular characteristics of Cryptosporidium muris strain TS03 are described, and the species name Cryptosporidium proliferans n. sp. is proposed. Cryptosporidium proliferans obtained from a naturally infected East African mole rat (Tachyoryctes splendens) in Kenya was propagated under laboratory conditions in rodents (SCID mice and southern multimammate mice, Mastomys coucha) and used in experiments to examine oocyst morphology and transmission. DNA from the propagated C. proliferans isolate, and C. proliferans DNA isolated from the feces of an African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) in Central African Republic, a donkey (Equus africanus) in Algeria, and a domestic horse (Equus caballus) in the Czech Republic were used for phylogenetic analyses. Oocysts of C. proliferans are morphologically distinguishable from C. parvum and C. muris HZ206, measuring 6.8–8.8 (mean = 7.7 μm) × 4.8–6.2 μm (mean = 5.3) with a length to width ratio of 1.48 (n = 100). Experimental studies using an isolate originated from T. splendens have shown that the course of C. proliferans infection in rodent hosts differs from that of C. muris and C. andersoni. The prepatent period of 18–21 days post infection (DPI) for C. proliferans in southern multimammate mice (Mastomys coucha) was similar to that of C. andersoni and longer than the 6–8 DPI prepatent period for C. muris RN66 and HZ206 in the same host. Histopatologicaly, stomach glands of southern multimammate mice infected with C. proliferans were markedly dilated and filled with necrotic material, mucus, and numerous Cryptosporidium developmental stages. Epithelial cells of infected glands were atrophic, exhibited cuboidal or squamous metaplasia, and significantly proliferated into the lumen of the stomach, forming papillary structures. The epithelial height and stomach weight were six-fold greater than in non-infected controls. Phylogenetic analyses based on small subunit rRNA, Cryptosporidium oocyst wall protein, thrombospondin-related adhesive protein of Cryptosporidium-1, heat shock protein 70, actin, heat shock protein 90 (MS2), MS1, MS3, and M16 gene sequences revealed that C. proliferans is genetically distinct from C. muris and other previously described Cryptosporidium species. PMID:26771460

  11. A new species of Caryospora (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the bald eagle, Haliaeetus leucocephalus (Accipitriformes: Accipitridae), from Kansas.

    PubMed

    McAllister, Chris T; Duszynski, Donald W; McKown, Richard D

    2013-04-01

    Between March 1989 and February 1994, 4 bald eagles ( Haliaeetus leucocephalus ) from various localities in Kansas were examined for coccidia. One (25%) of the bald eagles was found to be passing an undescribed species of Caryospora in its feces. Oocysts of Caryospora hanebrinki n. sp. are ellipsoidal to ovoidal with a bilayered wall and measure 48.1 × 42.1 μm with a shape index of 1.2. A micropyle, oocyst residuum, and polar granule were absent. Sporocysts are spheroidal, 24.8 μm wide. Stieda, substieda, and parastieda bodies were absent; a spheroidal sporocyst residuum is present; it measures 17.5 μm and is composed of many intact homogenous globules with a few dispersed in a loose spiral around the sporocysts. This is the first caryosporan documented from the bald eagle and is the largest known Caryospora from raptors.

  12. A new coccidian (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from Galápagos tortoise, Chelonoidis sp. (Testudines: Testudinidae), from the Dallas Zoo.

    PubMed

    McAllister, Chris T; Duszynski, Donald W; Roberts, David T

    2014-02-01

    During January 1994, feces from a captive juvenile Galápagos tortoise, Chelonoidis sp., from the Dallas Zoo, Dallas County, Texas was examined for coccidia. The tortoise was found to harbor an eimerian which is described as new. Sporulated oocysts of Eimeria iversoni n. sp. were ovoidal with a smooth, single-layered wall (∼ 0.5-0.8) that measured (L × W) 13.5 × 10.3 μm, with a length/width (L/W) ratio of 1.3; micropyle, oocyst residuum, and polar granule(s) were all absent; 2 conical projections were present on 1 end of oocyst and measured 1.0-1.5. Sporocysts were elongate-ellipsoidal and measured 8.3 × 4.5 μm, with L/W of 1.8; a Stieda body (∼ 0.5 high) was present, but substieda and parastieda bodies were absent; a sporocyst residuum was composed of 2-5 granules in a compact mass between sporozoites; sporozoites were banana-shaped and measured 9.5 × 2.5 in situ, with an ellipsoidal posterior refractile body and a spheroidal anterior refractile body. This is only the second time an eimerian has been reported from Galápagos tortoises.

  13. Experimental infection of adult and juvenile coyotes with domestic dog and wild coyote isolates of Hepatozoon americanum (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina).

    PubMed

    Garrett, Jennifer Jane; Kocan, A Alan; Reichard, Mason V; Panciera, Roger J; Bahr, Robert J; Ewing, Sidney A

    2005-07-01

    Each of five adult and four juvenile coyotes (Canis latrans) was exposed to an oral dose of 50 Hepatozoon americanum oocysts recovered from Amblyomma maculatum ticks that previously fed on either naturally infected domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) or naturally infected wild coyotes. All coyotes exposed to H. americanum became infected, regardless of isolate source, and all exhibited mild to moderate clinical disease that simulated American canine hepatozoonosis in naturally infected dogs. At 100 days postexposure, parasitemia was greater in juvenile than adult coyotes (0.9% and 0.3%, respectively); radiographic imaging of femurs revealed moderate exostosis in all juveniles and mild to moderate new bone growth in four of five (80%) adult coyotes. Gross postmortem analysis of bone lesions demonstrated variation between age groups of coyotes but not between isolates of H. americanum. Microscopic evaluation of skeletal muscle revealed that parasite-induced lesions were significantly more numerous (t = 5.0, df = 7, P = 0.001) in juvenile than adult coyotes. Results of this study indicate that juvenile and adult coyotes are equally susceptible to experimental infection with H. americanum isolated from domestic dog and wild coyote sources. The age of coyotes at the time of exposure, and possibly the number of H. americanum oocysts ingested, might influence morbidity and mortality, but it appears that both adult and juvenile coyotes could be reservoirs of H. americanum.

  14. Haemoproteus ilanpapernai n. sp. (Apicomplexa, Haemoproteidae) in Strix seloputo from Singapore: morphological description and reassignment of molecular data.

    PubMed

    Karadjian, Grégory; Martinsen, Ellen; Duval, Linda; Chavatte, Jean-Marc; Landau, Irène

    2014-01-01

    Haemoproteus ilanpapernai Karadjian and Landau n. sp. from the Spotted Wood Owl, Strix seloputo, in Singapore is described from material from Ilan Paperna's collection of slides. The species was previously identified as Haemoproteus syrnii (Mayer, 1910). However, comparisons between the material from Strix seloputo and our own material from Strix aluco, the type host of H. syrnii, revealed morphological and molecular differences. H. ilanpapernai n. sp. differs morphologically from H. syrnii by the much smaller size of the gametocytes, the different position of the mature gametocytes in the erythrocyte (apical, subapical, or lateral in H. ilanpapernai vs. always lateral in H. syrnii), the effect on the erythrocyte nucleus (frequently tilted in H. ilanpapernai but not displaced laterally vs. straight and displaced laterally in H. syrnii) and characters of the pigment (aggregated in the gametocytes of H. ilanpapernai vs. dispersed in H. syrnii). A molecular analysis showed that the two species differ by 2.9% at the cyt b and 3.1% at the COI genes. PMID:24759652

  15. Caryospora peneireiroi n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) in the common kestrel, Falco tinnunculus (Falconiformes: Falconidae), in mainland Portugal.

    PubMed

    Cardozo, Sergian Vianna; Berto, Bruno Pereira; Caetano, Inês; Maniero, Viviane Camara; Fonseca, Isabel Pereira da; Lopes, Carlos Wilson Gomes

    2016-06-01

    The common kestrel Falco tinnunculus Linnaeus, 1758, is a widespread raptor, native in Europe, Asia and Africa, and vagrant in the Americas. In the current work, 27 fecal samples were collected from common kestrels kept in the Lisbon Center for Wild Animal Recovery, located at Monsanto Forest Park, Lisbon, Portugal. Five (19%) of them were found to be passing an undescribed species of Caryospora in their feces. The oocysts of Caryospora peneireiroi n. sp. were ellipsoidal with a bilayered wall and measured 47.1 × 37.6 µm with a shape index of 1.25. No micropyle, oocyst residuum or polar granule was present. The sporocysts were subspherical, measuring 25.1 × 24.3 µm. Stieda, sub-Stieda and para-Stieda bodies were absent. The sporocyst residuum was composed of many homogenous globules scattered throughout the periphery of the sporocyst. This is the fourth caryosporan species reported from F. tinnunculus. PMID:27276668

  16. Caryospora peneireiroi n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) in the common kestrel, Falco tinnunculus (Falconiformes: Falconidae), in mainland Portugal.

    PubMed

    Cardozo, Sergian Vianna; Berto, Bruno Pereira; Caetano, Inês; Maniero, Viviane Camara; Fonseca, Isabel Pereira da; Lopes, Carlos Wilson Gomes

    2016-06-01

    The common kestrel Falco tinnunculus Linnaeus, 1758, is a widespread raptor, native in Europe, Asia and Africa, and vagrant in the Americas. In the current work, 27 fecal samples were collected from common kestrels kept in the Lisbon Center for Wild Animal Recovery, located at Monsanto Forest Park, Lisbon, Portugal. Five (19%) of them were found to be passing an undescribed species of Caryospora in their feces. The oocysts of Caryospora peneireiroi n. sp. were ellipsoidal with a bilayered wall and measured 47.1 × 37.6 µm with a shape index of 1.25. No micropyle, oocyst residuum or polar granule was present. The sporocysts were subspherical, measuring 25.1 × 24.3 µm. Stieda, sub-Stieda and para-Stieda bodies were absent. The sporocyst residuum was composed of many homogenous globules scattered throughout the periphery of the sporocyst. This is the fourth caryosporan species reported from F. tinnunculus. PMID:27334821

  17. Endogenous Life Cycle of Eimeria marmosopos (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the Opossum, Didelphis marsupialis (Didelphimorphia: Didelphidae) in Costa Rica.

    PubMed

    Chinchilla, Misael; Valerio, Idalia; Duszynski, Donald

    2015-08-01

    The endogenous life cycle of Eimeria marmosopos was studied in experimentally infected young opossums, Didelphis marsupialis . All the endogenous stages were located in the epithelial cells of villi in the small intestine. Giemsa-stained mucosal scrapings and histological sections were studied for the diagnosis of all the life cycle stages. Eimeria marmosopos has 3 generations of meronts (M) that differ by size, shape, and number of merozoites (m), which also differ in their size, shape, and location of their nuclei within the cytoplasm of the meronts. The 3 meront types, M(1)-M(3), respectively, had 8-15 (m(1)), 4-9 (m(2)), and 22-30 (m(3)) merozoites. Macrogametocytes and microgametocytes, as well as macrogametes and microgametes, completed the sexual cycle, finishing with the formation of unsporulated oocysts. This parasite's endogenous development produced severe intestinal lesions in experimentally infected opossums. There are 56 Eimeria species known from all marsupials worldwide, but this is the first complete life cycle in which both the asexual and sexual stages have been documented. PMID:25807059

  18. Endogenous Life Cycle of Eimeria marmosopos (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the Opossum, Didelphis marsupialis (Didelphimorphia: Didelphidae) in Costa Rica.

    PubMed

    Chinchilla, Misael; Valerio, Idalia; Duszynski, Donald

    2015-08-01

    The endogenous life cycle of Eimeria marmosopos was studied in experimentally infected young opossums, Didelphis marsupialis . All the endogenous stages were located in the epithelial cells of villi in the small intestine. Giemsa-stained mucosal scrapings and histological sections were studied for the diagnosis of all the life cycle stages. Eimeria marmosopos has 3 generations of meronts (M) that differ by size, shape, and number of merozoites (m), which also differ in their size, shape, and location of their nuclei within the cytoplasm of the meronts. The 3 meront types, M(1)-M(3), respectively, had 8-15 (m(1)), 4-9 (m(2)), and 22-30 (m(3)) merozoites. Macrogametocytes and microgametocytes, as well as macrogametes and microgametes, completed the sexual cycle, finishing with the formation of unsporulated oocysts. This parasite's endogenous development produced severe intestinal lesions in experimentally infected opossums. There are 56 Eimeria species known from all marsupials worldwide, but this is the first complete life cycle in which both the asexual and sexual stages have been documented.

  19. Cryptosporidium proliferans n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporidiidae): Molecular and Biological Evidence of Cryptic Species within Gastric Cryptosporidium of Mammals.

    PubMed

    Kváč, Martin; Havrdová, Nikola; Hlásková, Lenka; Daňková, Tereza; Kanděra, Jiří; Ježková, Jana; Vítovec, Jiří; Sak, Bohumil; Ortega, Ynes; Xiao, Lihua; Modrý, David; Chelladurai, Jeba Rose Jennifer Jesudoss; Prantlová, Veronika; McEvoy, John

    2016-01-01

    The morphological, biological, and molecular characteristics of Cryptosporidium muris strain TS03 are described, and the species name Cryptosporidium proliferans n. sp. is proposed. Cryptosporidium proliferans obtained from a naturally infected East African mole rat (Tachyoryctes splendens) in Kenya was propagated under laboratory conditions in rodents (SCID mice and southern multimammate mice, Mastomys coucha) and used in experiments to examine oocyst morphology and transmission. DNA from the propagated C. proliferans isolate, and C. proliferans DNA isolated from the feces of an African buffalo (Syncerus caffer) in Central African Republic, a donkey (Equus africanus) in Algeria, and a domestic horse (Equus caballus) in the Czech Republic were used for phylogenetic analyses. Oocysts of C. proliferans are morphologically distinguishable from C. parvum and C. muris HZ206, measuring 6.8-8.8 (mean = 7.7 μm) × 4.8-6.2 μm (mean = 5.3) with a length to width ratio of 1.48 (n = 100). Experimental studies using an isolate originated from T. splendens have shown that the course of C. proliferans infection in rodent hosts differs from that of C. muris and C. andersoni. The prepatent period of 18-21 days post infection (DPI) for C. proliferans in southern multimammate mice (Mastomys coucha) was similar to that of C. andersoni and longer than the 6-8 DPI prepatent period for C. muris RN66 and HZ206 in the same host. Histopatologicaly, stomach glands of southern multimammate mice infected with C. proliferans were markedly dilated and filled with necrotic material, mucus, and numerous Cryptosporidium developmental stages. Epithelial cells of infected glands were atrophic, exhibited cuboidal or squamous metaplasia, and significantly proliferated into the lumen of the stomach, forming papillary structures. The epithelial height and stomach weight were six-fold greater than in non-infected controls. Phylogenetic analyses based on small subunit rRNA, Cryptosporidium oocyst wall protein, thrombospondin-related adhesive protein of Cryptosporidium-1, heat shock protein 70, actin, heat shock protein 90 (MS2), MS1, MS3, and M16 gene sequences revealed that C. proliferans is genetically distinct from C. muris and other previously described Cryptosporidium species. PMID:26771460

  20. Synoptic revision of Blabericola (Apicomplexa: Eugregarinida: Blabericolidae) parasitizing blaberid cockroaches (Dictyoptera: Blaberidae), with comments on delineating gregarine species boundaries.

    PubMed

    Clopton, Richard E

    2012-06-01

    Complete synoptic redescriptions, including complete morphometric data for all life cycle stages, species recognition characters, and differential comparisons are presented for the 4 gregarine species comprising Blabericola . Blabericola cubensis ( Peregrine, 1970 ), Blabericola haasi (Geus, 1969), Blabericola migrator ( Clopton, 1995 ), and Blabericola princisi ( Peregrine, 1970 ) are redescribed from their type hosts, i.e., the discoid cockroach Blaberus discoidalis , the lobster cockroach Nauphoeta cinerea , the Madagascar hissing cockroach Gromphadorhina portentosa , and the Bolivian cockroach Blaberus boliviensis , respectively. These gregarine species descriptions are stabilized through deposition of extensive new voucher collections. Species of Blabericola are distinguished by differences in relative metric ratios, morphology of oocysts, and by relative metric ratios of mature gamonts in association. This work is discussed as a model for morphological species descriptions in the Eugregarinorida including the 6 principles for morphological gregarine species descriptions, i.e., a centroid and population variation approach, adequate sample size, partitioning developmental variation and sexual dimorphism, recognition and minimization of fixation and physiological artifacts to eliminate false morphotypes, and comparative data sets across multiple life cycle stages.

  1. Two new species of Isospora (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from skinks Emoia spp. (Sauria: Scincidae), from Fiji and Papua New Guinea

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McAllister, Chris T.; Duszynski, Donald W.; Fisher, Robert N.

    2013-01-01

    Between September and October 1991 and again during September 1992, skinks (Emoia spp.) were collected from various localities on Fiji and Papua New Guinea (PNG) and examined for coccidians. One of 4 (25%) De Vis' emo skinks (Emoia pallidiceps) from PNG harbored an undescribed species of Isospora in its feces. Oocysts of Isospora grinbikpelapalai n. sp. were ellipsoidal to subspheroidal, 18.1 × 14.9 (17–20 × 14–16) μm, with a bilayered wall and a length/width index (L/W) of 1.2. Both micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent, but a prominent polar granule was present. Sporocysts were ovoidal, 10.7 × 7.6 (10–11 × 7–8) μm, with a L/W index of 1.4. Stieda and sub-Stieda bodies were present, but para-Stieda bodies were absent. The sporocyst residuum consisted of large scattered globules dispersed between sporozoites. Sporozoites were elongate with spheroidal anterior and posterior refractile bodies. Isospora grinbikpelapalai was also found in 1 of 2 (50%) Pope's emo skinks (Emoia popei) from PNG. One of 13 (8%) white-bellied copper-striped skinks (Emoia cyanura), from Fiji, was passing another undescribed species of Isospora in its feces. Oocysts of Isospora casei n. sp. were elongate, 31.8 × 21.3 (28–35 × 18–24) μm, with a bilayered wall and a L/W index of 1.5. Micropyle, oocyst residuum, and polar granule were all absent. Sporocysts were ovoidal, 15.3 × 10.6 (14–16 × 10–12) μm, with a L/W index of 1.4. Stieda and sub-Stieda bodies were present, but para-Stieda bodies were absent. The sporocyst residuum consisted of scattered globules among sporozoites or as a cluster surrounding sporozoites. Sporozoites were elongate with spheroidal anterior and posterior refractile bodies. Isospora casei was also found in 1 of 2 (50%) Fiji slender treeskinks (Emoia concolor) from Fiji. This represents the first report of coccidia from Emoia spp. and, to our knowledge, the initial documentation of reptilian coccidia from herpetofauna from Papua New Guinea.

  2. A new species of Caryospora (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the bald eagle, Haliaeetus leucocephalus (Accipitriformes: Accipitridae), from Kansas.

    PubMed

    McAllister, Chris T; Duszynski, Donald W; McKown, Richard D

    2013-04-01

    Between March 1989 and February 1994, 4 bald eagles ( Haliaeetus leucocephalus ) from various localities in Kansas were examined for coccidia. One (25%) of the bald eagles was found to be passing an undescribed species of Caryospora in its feces. Oocysts of Caryospora hanebrinki n. sp. are ellipsoidal to ovoidal with a bilayered wall and measure 48.1 × 42.1 μm with a shape index of 1.2. A micropyle, oocyst residuum, and polar granule were absent. Sporocysts are spheroidal, 24.8 μm wide. Stieda, substieda, and parastieda bodies were absent; a spheroidal sporocyst residuum is present; it measures 17.5 μm and is composed of many intact homogenous globules with a few dispersed in a loose spiral around the sporocysts. This is the first caryosporan documented from the bald eagle and is the largest known Caryospora from raptors. PMID:22992168

  3. Two new species of coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from ground skinks, Scincella lateralis (Sauria: Scincidae), from Arkansas, USA

    PubMed Central

    McAllister, Chris T.; Seville, R. Scott; Connior, Matthew B.; Trauth, Stanley E.; Robison, Henry W.

    2014-01-01

    Between February 2011 and January 2014, 75 ground skinks, Scincella lateralis (Say, 1823) were collected from 13 counties of Arkansas and McCurtain County, Oklahoma, USA, and examined for coccidia. Two (3%) and 11 (15%) S. lateralis were found to be passing oocysts of a new choleoeimerian and isosporan, respectively. Oöcysts of Choleoeimeria ouachitensis n. sp. are ellipsoidal to cylindroidal with a smooth, colourless, bi– layered wall and measure 27.2 × 15.6 μm, and have a length/width (L/W) ratio of 1.7; both micropyle and oöcyst residuum are absent, but 1-2 polar granule(s) are present. Sporocysts are ovoidal, 8.9 × 6.8 μm, L/W 1.3; neither Stieda, sub-Stieda and para-Stieda bodies are present; the walls have two valves joined by longitudinal sutures; a sporocyst residuum consisted of dispersed granules between sporozoites. Oöcysts of Isospora koberi n. sp. are ovoidal with a smooth, colourless, bi-layered wall and measure 25.1 × 20.5 μm, L/W 1.2; both micropyle and oöcyst residuum are absent, but a polar granule is rarely present. Sporocysts are ovoidal, 11.4 × 8.6 μm, L/W 1.3; a nipple-like Stieda body and a subStieda body are present without a paraStieda body; a sporocyst residuum consisted of condensed granules dispersed between sporozoites. This is the second choleoeimerian and third isosporan reported from S. lateralis. PMID:24711115

  4. A new species of Isospora (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from eastern coachwhip, Coluber flagellum flagellum (Reptilia: Ophidia) from Oklahoma

    PubMed Central

    McAllister, Chris T.; Seville, R. Scott; Connior, Matthew B.

    2015-01-01

    Between June 2013 and August 2014, four eastern coachwhips, Coluber flagellum flagellum were collected from Arkansas (n = 2) and Oklahoma (n = 2) and their faeces examined for coccidian parasites. One (25%) harboured an isosporan that we describe here as new. Oocysts of Isospora kiamichiensis sp. n. were spheroidal to subspheroidal with a uni-layered wall and measured (length × width, L × W) 25.0 × 22.2 µm, with an L/W ratio of 1.1. A micropyle, oocyst residuum and polar granule were absent. Sporocysts were ovoidal, 14.2 × 9.8 µm, with an L/W ratio of 1.5. A pronounced, button-like Stieda body was present as well as a substieda body. A sporocyst residuum was present as dispersed granules. This is the first isosporan and fourth coccidian reported from eastern coachwhip snakes. In addition, a single oocyst of an unknown choleoeimerian was recovered from this host. PMID:26204185

  5. A new species of Eimeria (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from brown anole, Anolis sagrei (Sauria: Dactyloidae) from Florida, USA

    PubMed Central

    McAllister, Chris T.; Seville, R. Scott; Connior, Matthew B.; Trauth, Stanley E.

    2016-01-01

    During July 2014, 14 brown anoles, Anolis sagrei Duméril and Bibron were collected from Orange County, Florida, U.S.A., and their faeces examined for coccidian parasites. One (7%) harboured an eimerian that we describe here as new. Oöcysts of Eimeria garmani sp. n. were ellipsoidal with a uni-layered wall and measured (length × width, L × W) 19.3 × 12.5 μm, with a length/width (L/W) ratio of 1.5. A micropyle, oöcyst residuum and polar granule were absent. Sporocysts were subspheroidal, 6.8 × 6.3 μm, L/W 1.1. Stieda, substieda and parastieda bodies were absent. A sporocyst residuum was present as dispersed granules. Endogenous stages were observed within the small intestine. This is the first coccidian reported from the brown anole and the third eimerian reported from anoles in the United States. PMID:25962466

  6. Choleoeimeria ghaffari n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the gallbladder of Eryx jayakari Boulenger (Serpentes: Boidae) in Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Abdel-Baki, Abdel-Azeem S; Al-Quraishy, Saleh; Duszynski, Donald W

    2014-02-01

    Choleoeimeria ghaffari n. sp. is described from the gallbladder of Eryx jayakari Boulenger in Saudi Arabia. Oöcysts are tetrasporocystic, cylindroidal, 23 × 14 μm, with a smooth bi-layered wall and length/width ratio of 1.5, without micropyle, oöcyst residuum and polar granule. Sporocysts are subspheroidal to ellipsoidal, 8 × 6 μm, with length/width ratio of 1.4, without Stieda, sub-Stieda and para-Stieda bodies but with sporocyst residuum. Sporozoites are banana-shaped measuring 10 × 1.5 μm. The endogenous development was found to occur in the gallbladder epithelium and the extrahepatic bile ducts. Mature meronts are spheroidal, c.10 μm wide, and suspected to produce 12-16 merozoites. Microgamonts are irregular in shape, 13 × 10 μm, whereas macrogamonts are mostly subspheroidal, c.12 μm wide, with a prominent centrally-located nucleus. Based on oöcyst morphology and the site of endogenous development (epithelium of the gallbladder and bile ducts) the new eimeriid coccidian was placed in the genus Choleoeimeria Paperna & Landsberg, 1989.

  7. Rodents as intermediate hosts of Hepatozoon ayorgbor (Apicomplexa: Adeleina: Hepatozoidae) from the African ball python, Python regius?

    PubMed

    Sloboda, Michal; Kamler, Martin; Bulantová, Jana; Votýpka, Jan; Modrý, David

    2008-03-01

    Two experimental trials were performed to elucidate the role of rodents in the life cycle of Hepatozoon species using snakes as intermediate hosts. In one trial, two ball pythons, Python regius Shaw, 1802 were force fed livers of laboratory mice previously inoculated with sporocysts of Hepatozoon ayorgbor Sloboda, Kamler, Bulantová, Votýpka et Modrý, 2007. Transmission was successful in these experimentally infected snakes as evidenced by the appearance of intraerythrocytic gamonts, which persisted until the end of trial, 12 months after inoculation. Developmental stages of haemogregarines were not observed in histological sections from mice. In another experimental trial, a presence of haemogregarine DNA in mice inoculated with H. ayorgbor was demonstrated by PCR in the liver, lungs and spleen.

  8. Microscopic and molecular characterization of Hepatozoon domerguei (Apicomplexa) and Foleyella furcata (Nematoda) in wild endemic reptiles from Madagascar

    PubMed Central

    Maia, João P.; Crottini, Angelica; Harris, David James

    2014-01-01

    Madagascar is one of the world’s top twelve “megadiversity” hot spots hosting unique and threatened flora and fauna. Parasites are a major component of biodiversity but remain largely uncharacterized in wildlife. In this study we combine microscopic and molecular assessment of hemoparasites in endemic reptile species from Madagascar. We detected three distinct parasites: the apicomplexans Hepatozoon and Sarcocystis, and filarial nematodes. The prevalence and intensity of these apicomplexans were low overall, while microfilarial infections in chameleons were relatively high. We detected mixed infections of two Hepatozoon haplotypes in Madagascarophis colubrinus, and of Hepatozoon and microfilariae in a Furcifer sp. Phylogenetic analyses of Hepatozoon showed evidence of prey-predator transmission, with identical sequences found in the snakes M. colubrinus and Ithycyphus oursi, and their prey Furcifer sp. Based on previous studies regarding the life cycle of Hepatozoon domerguei Landau, Chabaud, Michel, and Brygoo, 1970 in these hosts and due to their morphological similarity, we propose that this Hepatozoon haplotype is Hepatozoon domerguei. Future studies, including the examination of invertebrate hosts, are needed to verify this preliminary taxonomic identification. A distinct hemogregarine haplotype was found in Oplurus sp., which displayed morphologically different gametocytes, some of which were apparently inside leukocytes. The Sarcocystis identified from Tracheloptychus petersi was identical to that reported in a North African snake, indicating that the same lineage is found in geographically distinct regions. By combining morphological and genetic information, Foleyella furcata (Linstow, 1899) filarial nematodes were identified in several Furcifer chameleons. This study provides insights into the distribution, diversity and host-parasite interactions of hemoparasites in wild reptile populations from Madagascar. PMID:25224723

  9. Identification of a Divergent Environmental DNA Sequence Clade Using the Phylogeny of Gregarine Parasites (Apicomplexa) from Crustacean Hosts

    PubMed Central

    Rueckert, Sonja; Simdyanov, Timur G.; Aleoshin, Vladimir V.; Leander, Brian S.

    2011-01-01

    Background Environmental SSU rDNA surveys have significantly improved our understanding of microeukaryotic diversity. Many of the sequences acquired using this approach are closely related to lineages previously characterized at both morphological and molecular levels, making interpretation of these data relatively straightforward. Some sequences, by contrast, appear to be phylogenetic orphans and are sometimes inferred to represent “novel lineages” of unknown cellular identity. Consequently, interpretation of environmental DNA surveys of cellular diversity rely on an adequately comprehensive database of DNA sequences derived from identified species. Several major taxa of microeukaryotes, however, are still very poorly represented in these databases, and this is especially true for diverse groups of single-celled parasites, such as gregarine apicomplexans. Methodology/Principal Findings This study attempts to address this paucity of DNA sequence data by characterizing four different gregarine species, isolated from the intestines of crustaceans, at both morphological and molecular levels: Thiriotia pugettiae sp. n. from the graceful kelp crab (Pugettia gracilis), Cephaloidophora cf. communis from two different species of barnacles (Balanus glandula and B. balanus), Heliospora cf. longissima from two different species of freshwater amphipods (Eulimnogammarus verrucosus and E. vittatus), and Heliospora caprellae comb. n. from a skeleton shrimp (Caprella alaskana). SSU rDNA sequences were acquired from isolates of these gregarine species and added to a global apicomplexan alignment containing all major groups of gregarines characterized so far. Molecular phylogenetic analyses of these data demonstrated that all of the gregarines collected from crustacean hosts formed a very strongly supported clade with 48 previously unidentified environmental DNA sequences. Conclusions/Significance This expanded molecular phylogenetic context enabled us to establish a major clade of intestinal gregarine parasites and infer the cellular identities of several previously unidentified environmental SSU rDNA sequences, including several sequences that have formerly been discussed broadly in the literature as a suspected “novel” lineage of eukaryotes. PMID:21483868

  10. Phylogeny of gregarines (Apicomplexa) as inferred from small-subunit rDNA and beta-tubulin.

    PubMed

    Leander, Brian S; Clopton, Richard E; Keeling, Patrick J

    2003-01-01

    Gregarines are thought to be deep-branching apicomplexans. Accordingly, a robust inference of gregarine phylogeny is crucial to any interpretation of apicomplexan evolution, but molecular sequences from gregarines are restricted to a small number of small-subunit (SSU) rDNA sequences from derived taxa. This work examines the usefulness of SSU rDNA and beta-tubulin sequences for inferring gregarine phylogeny. SSU rRNA genes from Lecudina (Mingazzini) sp., Monocystis agilis Stein, Leidyana migrator Clopton and Gregarina polymorpha Dufour, as well as the beta-tubulin gene from Leidyana migrator, were sequenced. The results of phylogenetic analyses of alveolate taxa using both genes were consistent with an early origin of gregarines and the putative 'sister' relationship between gregarines and Cryptosporidium, but neither phylogeny was strongly supported. In addition, two SSU rDNA sequences from unidentified marine eukaryotes were found to branch among the gregarines: one was a sequence derived from the haemolymph parasite of the giant clam, Tridacna crocea, and the other was a sequence misattributed to the foraminiferan Ammonium beccarii. In all of our analyses, the SSU rDNA sequence from Colpodella sp. clustered weakly with the apicomplexans, which is consistent with ultrastructural data. Altogether, the exact position of gregarines with respect to Cryptosporidium and other apicomplexans remains to be confirmed, but the congruence of SSU rDNA and beta-tubulin trees with one another and with morphological data does suggest that further sampling of molecular data will eventually put gregarine diversity into a phylogenetic context.

  11. Margolisiella islandica sp. nov. (Apicomplexa: Eimeridae) infecting Iceland scallop Chlamys islandica (Müller, 1776) in Icelandic waters.

    PubMed

    Kristmundsson, Árni; Helgason, Sigurður; Bambir, Slavko H; Eydal, Matthías; Freeman, Mark A

    2011-11-01

    Wild Iceland scallops Chlamys islandica from an Icelandic bay were examined for parasites. Queen scallops Aequipecten opercularis from the Faroe Islands and king scallops Pecten maximus and queen scallops from Scottish waters were also examined. Observations revealed heavy infections of eimeriorine parasites in 95-100% of C. islandica but not the other scallop species. All life stages in the apicomplexan reproduction phases, i.e. merogony, gametogony and sporogony, were present. Trophozoites and meronts were common within endothelial cells of the heart's auricle and two generations of free merozoites were frequently seen in great numbers in the haemolymph. Gamonts at various developmental stages were also abundant, most frequently free in the haemolymph. Macrogamonts were much more numerous than microgamonts. Oocysts were exclusively in the haemolymph; live mature oocysts contained numerous (>500) densely packed pairs of sporozoites forming sporocysts. Analysis of the 18S ribosomal DNA revealed that the parasite from C. islandica is most similar (97.7% identity) to an unidentified apicomplexan isolated from the haemolymph of the giant clam, Tridacna crocea, from Japan. Phylogenetic analyses showed that the novel sequence consistently grouped with the Tridacna sequence which formed a robust sister clade to the rhytidocystid group. We propose the name Margolisiella islandica sp. nov., referring to both type host and type locality.

  12. Coccidian parasites (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from insectivores. VIII. Four new species from the star-nosed mole, Condylura cristata.

    PubMed

    Duszynski, D W

    1989-08-01

    Twenty-four star-nosed moles, Condylura cristata, collected from the northeastern United States (Maine, Massachusetts, Ohio, Vermont) were examined for coccidian oocysts. All of the moles were infected with from 1 to 4 species of coccidia representing 2 eimerian and 3 isosporan spp., but oocysts of only 4 of these species were present in sufficient numbers for detailed study; these are described as new. Sporulated oocysts of Eimeria condylurae n. sp. were subspheroid, 17.7 x 15.7 (17-23 x 14-21) microns, with sporocysts ellipsoid, 11.7 x 5.6 (11-14 x 5-6) microns; E. condylurae was found in 3 of 24 (12.5%) moles. Sporulated oocysts of Isospora condylurae n. sp. were ellipsoid, 19.4 x 9.3 (17-21 x 8-11) microns, with sporocysts ovoid, 11.7 x 5.8 (11-13 x 5-7) microns; I. condylurae was found in 12 of 24 (50%) moles. Sporulated oocysts of Isospora cristatae n. sp. were ellipsoid, 15.7 x 10.1 (13-18 x 9-13) microns, with sporocysts ovoid, 11.0 x 5.7 (10-12 x 5-7) microns; I. cristatae was found in 19 of 24 (79%) moles. Sporulated oocysts of Isospora lamoillensis n. sp. were ellipsoid, tapering at both ends, 21.6 x 13.0 (19-23 x 11-14) microns, with sporocysts spindle-shaped, 14.9 x 7.7 (14-16 x 7-8) microns; I. lamoillensis was found in 2 of 24 (8%) moles. Although the second eimerian seen was in 7 of the 24 (29%) moles from Massachusetts, Ohio, and Vermont, there were not enough sporulated oocysts to study in detail to warrant a new species description.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  13. Coccidian parasites (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from insectivores. VII. Six new species from the hairy-tailed mole, Parascalops breweri.

    PubMed

    Ford, P L; Duszynski, D W

    1989-08-01

    Sixteen hairy-tailed moles, Parascalops breweri, collected from the northeastern U.S.A. were examined for coccidian oocysts; all were infected with multiple species of coccidia and 3 genera were represented. Two cyclosporans, 2 eimerians, and 2 isosporans are described as new species. Sporulated oocysts of Cyclospora ashtabulensis n. sp. are subspheroid to ellipsoid, 18 X 14 (14-23 X 11-19) microns, and sporocysts are ovoid, 12 X 7 (8-14 X 5-9) microns; C. ashtabulensis was found in 7 of 16 (44%) moles. Sporulated oocysts of Cyclospora parascalopi n. sp. are spheroid, 17 X 14 (13-20 X 11-20) microns, and sporocysts are ovoid, 11 X 7 (8-14 X 5-8) microns; C. parascalopi was found in 8 of 16 (50%) moles. Sporulated oocysts of Eimeria aethiospora n. sp. are subspheroid to ellipsoid, 19 X 13 (15-24 X 10-16) microns, and sporocysts are ovoid, 11 X 6 (8-13 X 4-7) microns; E. aethiospora was found in 4 of 16 (25%) moles. Sporulated oocysts of Eimeria titthus n. sp. are subspheroid, 16 X 14 (13-19 X 11-17) microns, and sporocysts are ellipsoid, 11 X 6 (9-13 X 4-7) microns; E. titthus was found in 4 of 16 (25%) moles. Sporulated oocysts of Isospora ashtabulensis n. sp. are ellipsoid, 20 X 14 (16-24 X 10-18) microns, and sporocysts are ovoid, 10 X 7 (7-14 X 5-10) microns; I. ashtabulensis was found in 5 of 16 (31%) moles.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  14. Coccidian parasites (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from insectivores. V. Ten forms from the moles of Japan (Euroscaptor, Mogera spp.).

    PubMed

    Duszynski, D W; Wattam, A R

    1988-02-01

    Moles from Japan were examined for coccidian oocysts, and 67 of 77 (87%) hosts were infected including 8 of 11 (73%) Euroscaptor mizura, 31 of 36 (86%) Mogera kobeae, 17 of 17 M. tokudae, and 11 of 13 (85%) M. wogura. Of 67 infected hosts, 57 (85%) had multiple infections representing 2-5 coccidian species when examined. All oocysts in the infected fecal samples remained unsporulated and the absence of sporulation may be the result of storing feces from Japanese moles in 2% aqueous H2SO4. Five structurally distinct forms of unsporulated oocysts were found in E. mizura, and five distinct forms of unsporulated oocysts were also seen in Mogera spp. Two of the forms from E. mizura were similar to forms from Mogera spp., and the five forms from Mogera were shared freely between the three Mogera species. This is the first systematic survey of Japanese moles for coccidia.

  15. Two new species of Eimeria (Apicomplexa, Eimeriidae) from tree skinks, Prasinohaema spp. (Sauria: Scincidae), from Papua New Guinea

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McAllister, Chris T.; Duszynski, Donald W.; Fisher, Robert N.; Austin, Christopher C.

    2014-01-01

    Between September 1991 and June 1992, feces from 4 species of tree skinks, Prasinohaema spp. from Papua New Guinea, were collected and examined for coccidia. Two species, P. flavipes and P. prehensicauda were found to harbor eimerians which are described as new. Oocysts of Eimeria krausi sp. nov. from P. flavipes were ellipsoidal to subspheroidal with a smooth bilayered wall and measured (L × W) 19.2 × 16.9 μm, with a length/width (L/W) ratio of 1.1. Micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent but a fragmented polar granule was present. Sporocysts were ellipsoidal, 9.7 × 6.7 μm, L/W of 1.5. Stieda, subStieda and paraStieda bodies were absent. The sporocyst residuum was composed of many small granules in a compact mass between sporozoites. The sporozoites were sausage-shaped, 11.7 × 2.7 μm, in situ, with an ellipsoidal posterior refractile body and a spheroidal anterior refractile body. Oocysts of Eimeria greeri sp. nov. from P. prehensicauda were ellipsoidal with a smooth bilayered wall, (L × W) 23.0 × 18.3 μm, with a L/W of 1.3. Micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent but a fragmented polar granule was present. Sporocysts were ellipsoidal, 9.7 × 8.4 μm, with a L/W of 1.2. Stieda, subStieda and paraStieda bodies were absent. The sporocyst residuum was composed of many large granules in a compact mass between sporozoites. The sporozoites were sausage-shaped, with an ellipsoidal posterior refractile body and a spheroidal anterior refractile body. We document here the first report of coccidia from skinks of the genus Prasinohaema.

  16. The good, the bad and the ugly: Emys trinacris, Placobdella costata and Haemogregarina stepanowi in Sicily (Testudines, Annelida and Apicomplexa).

    PubMed

    Arizza, Vincenzo; Sacco, Francesco; Russo, Debora; Scardino, Rita; Arculeo, Marco; Vamberger, Melita; Marrone, Federico

    2016-08-18

    Endemic Sicilian pond turtles Emys trinacris Fritz, Fattizzo, Guicking, Tripepi, Pennisi, Lenk, Joger et Wink were examined for the presence of haemogregarine parasites. The presence of haemogregarines, occurring mainly in the microgametocyte stage (13.2 ± 0.12 μm in length and 6.4 ± 0.52 μm in width), was observed in approximately 9% of the sampled E. trinacris. Based on the observed morphology and on the sequencing of nuclear 18S rDNA, we identified the parasite as Haemogregarina stepanowi Danilewsky, 1885. Morphometric study of uninfected and infected red blood cells has shown that H. stepanowi induces different changes in erythrocyte shape depending on the infective stage. The differential count of leukocytes in specimens infected with H. stepanowi showed no significant difference compared with healthy specimens. However, considering the health problems which might be induced by H. stepanowi in the closely related European pond turtle Emys orbicularis (Linneaus), monitoring of the health status of the infected Sicilian populations of E. trinacris is desirable. The restricted distribution of populations of Emys infected with haemogregarines in Sicily is quite puzzling and the possible human-mediated introduction of the parasite in Sicily is briefly discussed.

  17. Redescription and molecular diagnosis of Hepatozoon theileri (Laveran, 1905) (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina: Hepatozoidae), infecting Amietia quecketti (Anura: Pyxicephalidae).

    PubMed

    Netherlands, Edward C; Cook, Courtney A; Smit, Nico J; du Preez, Louis H

    2014-08-01

    Blood smears prepared from the peripheral blood of 20 wild caught Amietia quecketti (Boulenger) from the North-West University Botanical Gardens, North West Province, South Africa, were examined for the presence of haemogregarines. A haemogregarine species comparative in morphology, host and geographical locality to that of Haemogregarina theileri Laveran, 1905 was detected. The original description of H. theileri was based solely on frog peripheral blood gamont stages. Later, further parasite stages, including trophozoites and merogonic liver stages, were recorded in a related Amietia sp. from equatorial Africa. This species was originally classified as a member of the genus Haemogregarina Danilewsky, 1885, but due to the close life cycle and morphological resemblance to those of Hepatozoon species, H. theileri was later transferred from Haemogregarina to Hepatozoon Miller, 1908. In the present study, meront and merozoite stages not described before, along with previously observed trophozoite, immature and mature gamont stages, are described from the peripheral blood of hosts. In addition, comparative phylogenetic analysis of the partial 18S rDNA sequence of Hepatozoon theileri to those of other haemogregarine species, including those of species of Hepatozoon and a Haemogregarina, support the taxonomic transfer of H. theileri to Hepatozoon, nesting H. theileri within a clade comprising species parasitising other amphibians. This is the first molecular and phylogenetic analysis of an African anuran species of Hepatozoon.

  18. The role of gamont entry into erythrocytes in the specificity of Hepatozoon species (Apicomplexa: Adeleida) for their frog hosts.

    PubMed

    Dickson, Cory M; Ogbuah, Christopher T; Smith, Todd G

    2013-12-01

    Hepatozoon species are apicomplexan parasites that infect blood cells and viscera of terrestrial vertebrates. One species, Hepatozoon clamatae, primarily infects green frogs, Rana clamitans , whereas another, Hepatozoon catesbianae, primarily infects bullfrogs, Rana catesbeiana , although both species of parasite are capable of infecting either species of frog. The aim of this study was to determine whether the basis for this partial host specificity is manifested at the gamont, or intraerythrocytic, stage of the parasite's life cycle. Blood was drawn from infected frogs and treated in vitro with a saline solution to induce intracellular gamonts to emerge from host erythrocytes. This treated blood was added to in vitro samples of uninfected blood of green frogs and bullfrogs. After 1 hr, samples were analyzed to determine the level of re-entry of the parasites into uninfected erythrocytes. Results obtained using multiple combinations of donor and recipient frogs indicate that extracellular gamonts of both parasite species do not exhibit preference for erythrocytes of 1 frog species over those of another. These results suggest that the basis for the observed host specificity is not determined at the gamont stage and is more likely dependent on another stage in the parasite life cycle.

  19. A new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875 (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from Carlia spp. (Sauria: Scincidae) from Papua New Guinea

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McAllister, Chris T.; Duszynski, Donald W.; Fisher, Robert N.; Austin, Christopher C.

    2013-01-01

    A new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875 from rainbow skinks, Carlia ailanpalai Zug and Carlia eothen Zug is described from specimens collected in Papua New Guinea (PNG). Oöcysts of Eimeria zugi n. sp. from one of one (100%) C. eothen are ellipsoidal to cylindroidal, with a smooth, colourless, bi-layered wall, measure 25.1 × 15.5 μm and have a length/width ratio of 1.6. The micropyle and the oöcyst residuum are absent, but a polar granule is present. The sporocysts are ovoidal to ellipsoidal and 10.3 × 7.1 μm in size and do not contain Stieda, sub-Stieda or para-Stieda bodies; and the sporocyst residuum is composed of a compact mass of large globules. The sporozoites are elongate, 12.8 × 2.9 μm in size, and contain anterior and posterior refractile bodies with a nucleus between them. This is the ninth species of coccidium described from skinks from PNG, and the new species described herein is apparently endemic to the skink genus Carlia (Gray).

  20. Four new species of coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from Owen Stanley Skinks, Papuascincus stanleyanus (Sauria: Scincidae), from Papua New Guinea

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McAllister, Chris T.; Duszynski, Donald W.; Fisher, Robert N.; Austin, Christopher C.

    2014-01-01

    Between September and November 1991, 12 Owen Stanley skinks, Papuascincus stanleyanus (Booulenger) were collected from various localities on Papua New Guinea and examined for coccidians. Six (50%) were found to harbour four eimerians that we describe here as new. Oocysts of Eimeria burseyi sp. n. were elongate to ellipsoidal with a bilayered wall and measured (length x width, L x W) 36.0 x 24.0 microm, with a L/W ratio of 1.5. Both micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent, but a polar granule was present. Oocysts of Eimeria goldbergi sp. n. were ellipsoidal, with a bilayered wall, and measured 21.4 x 16.1 microm; L/W ratio was 1.3. Both micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent, but a single or fragmented polar granule was present. Oocysts of Eimeria boulengeri sp. n. were spheroidal to slightly subspheroidal, with a thin, single-layered wall that readily collapses, and measured 16.0 microm, L/W ratio was 1.0. Both micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent, but usually one (sometimes two) polar granule(s) were present. Oocysts of Eimeria niuginiensis sp. n. were oblong to tapered with a bilayered wall, and measured 20.0 x 13.1 microm; L/W ratio was 1.5. A micropyle, oocyst residuum and polar granule were absent. To our knowledge, these represent the only coccidians ever described from P. stanleyanus.

  1. Isospora plectrophenaxia n. sp (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae), a new coccidian parasite found in Snow Bunting (Plectrophenax nivalis) nestlings on Spitsbergen.

    PubMed

    Dolnik, Olga V; Loonen, Maarten J J E

    2007-11-01

    Faecal samples were collected from four 8 days old snow bunting nestlings from one nest in Ny-Alesund, Spitsbergen, in summer 2006. After sporulation, samples were examined for coccidian parasites using flotation centrifuging. We found isosporan oocysts in three birds, intensity of infection varied between individuals from 35 to 6,000 oocysts per defecation. All oocysts belonged to one species, which is described here as a new species. The spherical or subspherical oocysts (Fig. 1) have a brownish, smooth, relatively thin (about 1.1 microm) bilayered wall. Average size of sporulated oocysts was 26.2 +/- 0.13 x 23.6 +/- 0.16 microm (24.1-28.4 x 21.5-26.9; n = 10) with a shape index (length/width) of 1.11 +/- 0.01 (1.01-1.29). The sporulated oocysts have no micropyle or residuum but enclose one large (3.3 x 2.8 microm) ring-formed polar granule. The sporocysts are ovoidal, slightly pointed at the end opposite the Stieda body, 18.2 +/- 0.06 x 9.9 +/- 0.03 microm (17.1-19.0 x 9.0-10.8; n = 14), shape index 1.85 +/- 0.008 (1.70-1.99). The Stieda body has a prominent knob-like cap and a well-visible round substieda body. Sporocysts contain compact sporocyst residuum composed of small, uniform granules and sporozoits with usually three large refractile bodies and a smaller nucleus. The prepatent period is less than 8 days. This is the first description of an avian isosporan parasite that succeeds transmission while in the High Arctic. PMID:17701217

  2. Isospora hypoleucae sp. n. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae), a new coccidian parasite found in the Pied Flycatcher (Ficedula hypoleuca).

    PubMed

    Dolnik, O V; von Rönn, J A C; Bensch, S

    2009-07-01

    A new Coccidia species is reported from the natural population of Pied Flycatcher (Ficedula hypoleuca) in northern Germany. Sporulated oocysts were found in faeces from 6 of 8 sampled adults. The spherical oocysts of the new Isospora species have a brownish, smooth, bi-layered wall. Average size of sporulated oocysts was 19.4 x 19.3 microm (17.5-22.8 microm x 17.5-22.8 microm ) with a shape index (length/width) of 1.0. The sporulated oocysts have no micropyle or residuum, but enclose several small polar granules that often cluster into 2-3 dumbbell-shaped formations. Sporocysts are slightly elongated, rounded at the end opposite the Stieda body, 15.3 microm x 9.2 microm in size (13.8-16.1 microm x 8.5-10.3 microm ), and have a shape index of 1.7 (1.6-1.8). The Stieda body has a prominent knob-like cap, whereas the substieda body is absent. Sporocysts contain a small compact sporocyst residuum and 4 sporozoites. COI haplotypes identical to those isolated from faecal oocysts were PCR amplified from the blood of 13-day-old nestlings, suggesting that the newly described species has extra-intestinal stages in blood. This represents the first description of a new avian Isospora species supported by molecular sequence data from the same oocysts that are described morphologically. PMID:19450377

  3. Red and problematic green phylogenetic signals among thousands of nuclear genes from the photosynthetic and apicomplexa-related Chromera velia.

    PubMed

    Woehle, Christian; Dagan, Tal; Martin, William F; Gould, Sven B

    2011-01-01

    The photosynthetic and basal apicomplexan Chromera velia was recently described, expanding the membership of this otherwise nonphotosynthetic group of parasite protists. Apicomplexans are alveolates with secondary plastids of red algal origin, but the evolutionary history of their nuclear genes is still actively discussed. Using deep sequencing of expressed genes, we investigated the phylogenetic affinities of a stringent filtered set of 3,151 expressed sequence tag-contigs by generating clusters with eukaryotic homologs and constructing phylogenetic trees and networks. The phylogenetic positioning of this alveolate alga was determined and sets of phyla-specific proteins extracted. Phylogenetic trees provided conflicting signals, with 444 trees grouping C. velia with the apicomplexans but 354 trees grouping C. velia with the alveolate oyster pathogen Perkinsus marinus, the latter signal being reinforced from the analysis of shared genes and overall sequence similarity. Among the 513 C. velia nuclear genes that reflect a photosynthetic ancestry and for which nuclear homologs were available both from red and green lineages, 263 indicated a red photosynthetic ancestry, whereas 250 indicated a green photosynthetic ancestry. The same 1:1 signal ratio was found among the putative 255 nuclear-encoded plastid proteins identified. This finding of red and green signals for the alveolate mirrors the result observed in the heterokont lineage and supports a common but not necessarily single origin for the plastid in heterokonts and alveolates. The inference of green endosymbiosis preceding red plastid acquisition in these lineages leads to worryingly complicated evolutionary scenarios, prompting the search for other explanations for the green phylogenetic signal and the amount of hosts involved.

  4. Effects of Artemisia annua and Foeniculum vulgare on on chickens highly infected with Eimeria tenella (Phylum Apicomplexa)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Background: Intensive poultry production systems depend on chemoprophylaxis with anticoccidial drugs to combat infection. A floor-pen study was conducted to evaluate the anticoccidial effect of Artemisia annua and Foeniculum vulgare on Eimeria tenella infection. Five experimental groups were establi...

  5. Two new Eimeria species (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the yellow-crowned Amazon Amazona ochrocephala (Aves: Psittacidae) in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Hofstatter, P G; Kawazoe, U

    2011-06-01

    In this study, we describe 2 new species of Eimeria associated with the yellow-crowned Amazon Amazona ochrocephala. Eimeria amazonae n. sp. has bilayered, ellipsoidal, and smooth oocysts that measure 48.9 × 36.2 µm; the length/width ratio is 1.35. The micropyle and oocyst residuum are both absent, but the polar granule is present. Ovoidal sporocysts are 22.2 × 11.9 µm. Stieda and sub-Stieda bodies and sporocyst residuum are present. The 2 elongate sporozoites are curved and measure 18.1 × 3.4 µm; both have 2 refractile bodies. Eimeria ochrocephalae n. sp. has bilayered, ellipsoidal, and smooth oocysts that measure 43.8 × 27.7 µm; the length/width ratio is 1.58. The micropyle and oocyst residuum are absent, but the polar granule is present; ovoidal sporocysts are 20.6 × 10.1 µm. Stieda and sub-Stieda bodies and sporocyst residuum are present; 2 elongate and curved sporozoites are 15.8 × 3.4 µm, each of which has 2 refractile bodies.

  6. Isospora anthochaerae n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from a Red wattlebird (Anthochaera carunculata) (Passeriformes: Meliphagidae) in Western Australia.

    PubMed

    Yang, Rongchang; Brice, Belinda; Ryan, Una

    2014-05-01

    A new species, Isospora anthochaerae n. sp. is described from a Red wattlebird (Anthochaera carunculata). Sporulated oocysts (n=37) are subspherical, with smooth colourless to pale brown bilayered oocyst wall, 0.8 μm thick (outer layer 0·6 μm, inner 0.2 μm thick). Oocyst with 2 spheroidal to subspheroidal sporocysts. Oocyst length, 23.4 μm (20.0-26.0); oocyst width, 20.7 μm (19.0-22.0); oocyst length/width (L/W) ratio, 1.1. Micropyle, oocyst residuum and polar granule are absent. Sporocysts with compact sporocyst residuum and 4 sporozoites. Sporocyst length, 14.5 μm; sporocyst width, 10.1 μm sporocyst L/W ratio, 1.4. Molecular analysis was conducted at four loci; the ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS), the 18S and 28S ribosomal RNA and the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase gene (COI). At the COI locus, I. anthochaerae n. sp. exhibited 98.5% similarity to Isospora lesouefi from a Regent honeyeater (Xanthomyza phrygia) and 98% similarity with an Isospora sp. (iSAT5) from a blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla). Based on morphological and molecular data, this isolate is a new species of coccidian parasite that to date has only been found in Red wattlebirds.

  7. Isospora anthochaerae n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from a Red wattlebird (Anthochaera carunculata) (Passeriformes: Meliphagidae) in Western Australia.

    PubMed

    Yang, Rongchang; Brice, Belinda; Ryan, Una

    2014-05-01

    A new species, Isospora anthochaerae n. sp. is described from a Red wattlebird (Anthochaera carunculata). Sporulated oocysts (n=37) are subspherical, with smooth colourless to pale brown bilayered oocyst wall, 0.8 μm thick (outer layer 0·6 μm, inner 0.2 μm thick). Oocyst with 2 spheroidal to subspheroidal sporocysts. Oocyst length, 23.4 μm (20.0-26.0); oocyst width, 20.7 μm (19.0-22.0); oocyst length/width (L/W) ratio, 1.1. Micropyle, oocyst residuum and polar granule are absent. Sporocysts with compact sporocyst residuum and 4 sporozoites. Sporocyst length, 14.5 μm; sporocyst width, 10.1 μm sporocyst L/W ratio, 1.4. Molecular analysis was conducted at four loci; the ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS), the 18S and 28S ribosomal RNA and the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase gene (COI). At the COI locus, I. anthochaerae n. sp. exhibited 98.5% similarity to Isospora lesouefi from a Regent honeyeater (Xanthomyza phrygia) and 98% similarity with an Isospora sp. (iSAT5) from a blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla). Based on morphological and molecular data, this isolate is a new species of coccidian parasite that to date has only been found in Red wattlebirds. PMID:24602873

  8. Coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) of Three-toed Box Turtles, Terrapene carolina triunguis (Reptilia: Testudines), from Arkansas and Oklahoma

    PubMed Central

    McAllister, C.T.; Motriuk-Smith, D.; Seville, R.S.; Hudson, C.; Connior, M.B.; Robison, H.W.

    2015-01-01

    We collected 50 three-toed box turtles (Terrapene carolina triunguis) from 9 counties of Arkansas and 4 counties of Oklahoma, and examined their feces for coccidial parasites. Nine of 24 (38%) turtles from Arkansas and 8 of 26 (31%) from Oklahoma were found to be passing oocysts of Eimeria ornata. This represents two new geographic distributional records for this coccidian. Measurements of individual isolates of E. ornata as well as morphological characteristics are provided with comparison to its original description and to another Terrapene coccidian, Eimeria carri. In addition, we noted an adelid pseudoparasite being passed by a single T. c. triunguis from Oklahoma that likely represents a parasite of arthropods. PMID:27284580

  9. Comparison of the ITS1 and ITS2 rDNA in Emeria callospermophili (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from Sciurid Rodents

    PubMed Central

    Motriuk-Smith, Dagmara; Seville, R Scott; Quealy, Leah; Oliver, Clinton E.

    2011-01-01

    The taxonomy of the coccidia has historically been morphologically based. The purpose of this study was to establish if conspecificity of isolates of Eimeria callospermophili from 4 ground-dwelling squirrel hosts (Rodentia: Sciuridae) is supported by comparison of rDNA sequence data and to examine how this species relates to eimerian species from other sciurid hosts. Eimeria callospermophili was isolated from 4 wild caught hosts, i.e., Urocitellus elegans, Cynomys leucurus, Marmota flaviventris, and Cynomys ludovicianus. The ITS1 and ITS2 genomic rDNA sequences were PCR generated, sequenced, and analyzed. The highest intraspecific pairwise distance values of 6.0% in ITS1 and 7.1% in ITS2 were observed in C. leucurus. Interspecific pairwise distance values greater than 5% do not support E. callospermophili conspecificity. Generated E. callospermophili sequences were compared to Eimeria lancasterensis from Sciuris niger and Sciurus niger cinereus, and Eimeria ontarioensis from S. niger. A single well-supported clade was formed by E. callospermophili amplicons in Neighbor Joining and Maximum Parsimony analyses. However, within the clade there was little evidence of host or geographic structuring of the species. PMID:21506777

  10. The role of gamont entry into erythrocytes in the specificity of Hepatozoon species (Apicomplexa: Adeleida) for their frog hosts.

    PubMed

    Dickson, Cory M; Ogbuah, Christopher T; Smith, Todd G

    2013-12-01

    Hepatozoon species are apicomplexan parasites that infect blood cells and viscera of terrestrial vertebrates. One species, Hepatozoon clamatae, primarily infects green frogs, Rana clamitans , whereas another, Hepatozoon catesbianae, primarily infects bullfrogs, Rana catesbeiana , although both species of parasite are capable of infecting either species of frog. The aim of this study was to determine whether the basis for this partial host specificity is manifested at the gamont, or intraerythrocytic, stage of the parasite's life cycle. Blood was drawn from infected frogs and treated in vitro with a saline solution to induce intracellular gamonts to emerge from host erythrocytes. This treated blood was added to in vitro samples of uninfected blood of green frogs and bullfrogs. After 1 hr, samples were analyzed to determine the level of re-entry of the parasites into uninfected erythrocytes. Results obtained using multiple combinations of donor and recipient frogs indicate that extracellular gamonts of both parasite species do not exhibit preference for erythrocytes of 1 frog species over those of another. These results suggest that the basis for the observed host specificity is not determined at the gamont stage and is more likely dependent on another stage in the parasite life cycle. PMID:23829695

  11. Microscopic and molecular characterization of Hepatozoon domerguei (Apicomplexa) and Foleyella furcata (Nematoda) in wild endemic reptiles from Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Maia, João P; Crottini, Angelica; Harris, David James

    2014-01-01

    Madagascar is one of the world's top twelve "megadiversity" hot spots hosting unique and threatened flora and fauna. Parasites are a major component of biodiversity but remain largely uncharacterized in wildlife. In this study we combine microscopic and molecular assessment of hemoparasites in endemic reptile species from Madagascar. We detected three distinct parasites: the apicomplexans Hepatozoon and Sarcocystis, and filarial nematodes. The prevalence and intensity of these apicomplexans were low overall, while microfilarial infections in chameleons were relatively high. We detected mixed infections of two Hepatozoon haplotypes in Madagascarophis colubrinus, and of Hepatozoon and microfilariae in a Furcifer sp. Phylogenetic analyses of Hepatozoon showed evidence of prey-predator transmission, with identical sequences found in the snakes M. colubrinus and Ithycyphus oursi, and their prey Furcifer sp. Based on previous studies regarding the life cycle of Hepatozoon domerguei Landau, Chabaud, Michel, and Brygoo, 1970 in these hosts and due to their morphological similarity, we propose that this Hepatozoon haplotype is Hepatozoon domerguei. Future studies, including the examination of invertebrate hosts, are needed to verify this preliminary taxonomic identification. A distinct hemogregarine haplotype was found in Oplurus sp., which displayed morphologically different gametocytes, some of which were apparently inside leukocytes. The Sarcocystis identified from Tracheloptychus petersi was identical to that reported in a North African snake, indicating that the same lineage is found in geographically distinct regions. By combining morphological and genetic information, Foleyella furcata (Linstow, 1899) filarial nematodes were identified in several Furcifer chameleons. This study provides insights into the distribution, diversity and host-parasite interactions of hemoparasites in wild reptile populations from Madagascar. PMID:25224723

  12. First report of Hepatozoon (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina) from king ratsnakes (Elaphe carinata) in Shanghai, with description of a new species.

    PubMed

    Han, Hongyu; Wu, Youling; Dong, Hui; Zhu, Shunhai; Li, Liujia; Zhao, Qiping; Wu, Di; Pei, Enle; Wang, Yange; Huang, Bing

    2015-06-01

    Hepatozoon species are the most common hemoparasites of snakes. In this study, Hepatozoon parasites were examined for the first time in king rat snakes (Elaphe carinata) from Shanghai, China. All 10 snakes were found to be infected with Hepatozoon gamonts. The gamonts were folded back in a hook-wise fashion for about 3 μm at one end. Parasitemia levels ranged from 4-43 infected erythrocytes per 1,000 examined. The gamonts changed the morphology of the parasitized erythrocytes. Although the gamonts showed some distinct variations in both the parasite and its nucleus, phylogenetic analysis indicated that all the E. carinata in this study formed a monophyletic group, and were distinct from all other published Hepatozoon species. A new species, Hepatozoon chinensis, was proposed based on the molecular and morphologic evidence. PMID:26203995

  13. A new species of Isospora (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from eastern coachwhip, Coluber flagellum flagellum (Reptilia: Ophidia) from Oklahoma.

    PubMed

    McAllister, Chris T; Seville, R Scott; Connior, Matthew B

    2015-09-01

    Between June 2013 and August 2014, four eastern coachwhips, Coluber flagellum flagellum were collected from Arkansas (n = 2) and Oklahoma (n = 2) and their faeces examined for coccidian parasites. One (25%) harboured an isosporan that we describe here as new. Oocysts of Isospora kiamichiensis sp. n. were spheroidal to subspheroidal with a uni-layered wall and measured (length × width, L × W) 25.0 × 22.2 μm, with an L/W ratio of 1.1. A micropyle, oocyst residuum and polar granule were absent. Sporocysts were ovoidal, 13.9 × 9.4 μm, with an L/W ratio of 1.5. A pronounced, button-like Stieda body was present as well as a substieda body. A sporocyst residuum was present as dispersed granules. This is the first isosporan and fourth coccidian reported from eastern coachwhip snakes. In addition, a single oocyst of an unknown choleoeimerian was recovered from this host. PMID:26204185

  14. Morphological, morphometric, and molecular characterization of Hepatozoon spp. (Apicomplexa, Hepatozoidae) from naturally infected Caudisona durissa terrifica (Serpentes, Viperidae).

    PubMed

    Moço, Tatiana Cristina; da Silva, Reinaldo José; Madeira, Newton Goulart; Dos Santos Paduan, Karina; Rubini, Adriano Stefani; Leal, Denise Dutra Menezes; O'Dwyer, Lucia Helena

    2012-04-01

    Hepatozoon spp. are the most frequent intracellular protozoa in snakes. Considering the variety of parasites infecting specimens of Caudisona durissa terrifica and the divergent data in literature where only two species, Hepatozoon romani and Hepatozoon capsulata, are described, the aim of this study was to morphologically, morphometrically, and molecularly characterize Hepatozoon spp. from some naturally infected specimens of C. durissa terrifica, and observe changes caused by these protozoa in parasitized erythrocytes. Four snakes were examined. Two of them had two morphological distinct gamonts, while the other two had only one type of gamont. The six distinct gamonts were provisionally named gamonts A, B, C, D, E, and F. Statistical analysis, however, confirmed the existence of only four parasite populations, those which were capable of inducing significant alterations in determined red blood cells variables. Attempts to infect Aedes aegypti and Culex quinquefasciatus mosquitoes were done for each snake specimen. Some mosquitoes became infected and oocysts were recovered and measured. The detection of Hepatozoon DNA was obtained with success but the molecular characterization was unable to differentiate species of the samples, with respect to the fragment studied. PMID:21922238

  15. [The possible pathways of substance transport in the muscle cysts of 2 species of Sarcosporidia (Sarcocystis, Apicomplexa, Sporozoa)].

    PubMed

    Radchenko, A I; Gaibova, G D

    1993-01-01

    The present work is a sequel of our previous cytological investigations of the cyst-forming coccidia of the genus Sarcocystis (reported elsewhere), now performed on two species from different hosts: S. muris (mouse) and Sarcocystis sp. (water buffalo). Acid phosphatase is synthesized in the endoplasmic reticulum of cystic zoites, its activity being seen in particular in the microenemes. As was established earlier (Radchenko, 1991b), these organelles are extended regions of the smooth endoplasmic reticulum channels and are capable of separating from the latter to be aligned eventually along the pellicle of the parasite. Further on, micronemes are seen to attach to the inner membrane complex of the cystic zoites, so that the ductula of micronemes get into contact with the complex membranes. Just after this, the membranes are seen disassembled in the sites around this contact. The ductula of micronemes appear to be connected with the plasmalemma, i.e, the outer pellicle membrane, and protrusions of the plasmalemma appeared in the sites of these connections. Acid phosphatase (and presumably other substances contained in the micronemes) are poured into the plasmalemmal protrusions to form vesicles. In their turn, these vesicles are separated outside from the plasmalemma to move towards the sarcocyst subwall layer along the filamentous structures found in the septae of the sarcocyst ground substance. Then the membranes of the vesicles disappear, and phosphatase activity is observed in the cyst wall.

  16. [First notification of Eimeria bareillyi (Apicomplexa: Eimeridae) in feces of buffalo calves (Bubalus bubalis) naturally infected in Minas Gerais, Brazil].

    PubMed

    Bastianetto, Eduardo; Freitas, Carolina M V; Bello, Ana Cristina P P; Cunha, Arildo P; Dalla Rosa, Ricardo C; Leite, Romário C

    2008-09-01

    In this study the evolution of Eimeriosis in naturally infected calves was analyzed during 23 days starting at birth. The specie E. bareillyi was first identified in feces culture. Later other species of Eimeria already described in water buffalo were identified. The animals which died were submitted to necropsy, revealing macroscopic lesions in the ileum region. Histological analyses of the ileum region showed acute necrotic enteritis and the presence of Eimeria sp. in different developmental stages. Early infection by this parasite could be responsible for a secondary bacterial infection trough the intestinal lesions. The utilization of prophylactic medication and the therapeutic treatment of clinical Coccidiosis in water buffalo calves are necessary to their satisfactory development and surveillance.

  17. Caryospora peneireiroi n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) in the common kestrel, Falco tinnunculus (Falconiformes: Falconidae), in mainland Portugal.

    PubMed

    Cardozo, Sergian Vianna; Berto, Bruno Pereira; Caetano, Inês; Maniero, Viviane Camara; Fonseca, Isabel Pereira da; Lopes, Carlos Wilson Gomes

    2016-06-01

    The common kestrel Falco tinnunculus Linnaeus, 1758, is a widespread raptor, native in Europe, Asia and Africa, and vagrant in the Americas. In the current work, 27 fecal samples were collected from common kestrels kept in the Lisbon Center for Wild Animal Recovery, located at Monsanto Forest Park, Lisbon, Portugal. Five (19%) of them were found to be passing an undescribed species of Caryospora in their feces. The oocysts of Caryospora peneireiroi n. sp. were ellipsoidal with a bilayered wall and measured 47.1 × 37.6 µm with a shape index of 1.25. No micropyle, oocyst residuum or polar granule was present. The sporocysts were subspherical, measuring 25.1 × 24.3 µm. Stieda, sub-Stieda and para-Stieda bodies were absent. The sporocyst residuum was composed of many homogenous globules scattered throughout the periphery of the sporocyst. This is the fourth caryosporan species reported from F. tinnunculus.

  18. The gatekeeper residue and beyond: homologous calcium-dependent protein kinases as drug development targets for veterinarian Apicomplexa parasites.

    PubMed

    Keyloun, Katelyn R; Reid, Molly C; Choi, Ryan; Song, Yifan; Fox, Anna M W; Hillesland, Heidi K; Zhang, Zhongsheng; Vidadala, Ramasubbarao; Merritt, Ethan A; Lau, Audrey O T; Maly, Dustin J; Fan, Erkang; Barrett, Lynn K; VAN Voorhis, Wesley C; Ojo, Kayode K

    2014-09-01

    Specific roles of individual CDPKs vary, but in general they mediate essential biological functions necessary for parasite survival. A comparative analysis of the structure-activity relationships (SAR) of Neospora caninum, Eimeria tenella and Babesia bovis calcium-dependent protein kinases (CDPKs) together with those of Plasmodium falciparum, Cryptosporidium parvum and Toxoplasma gondii was performed by screening against 333 bumped kinase inhibitors (BKIs). Structural modelling and experimental data revealed that residues other than the gatekeeper influence compound-protein interactions resulting in distinct sensitivity profiles. We subsequently defined potential amino-acid structural influences within the ATP-binding cavity for each orthologue necessary for consideration in the development of broad-spectrum apicomplexan CDPK inhibitors. Although the BKI library was developed for specific inhibition of glycine gatekeeper CDPKs combined with low inhibition of threonine gatekeeper human SRC kinase, some library compounds exhibit activity against serine- or threonine-containing CDPKs. Divergent BKI sensitivity of CDPK homologues could be explained on the basis of differences in the size and orientation of the hydrophobic pocket and specific variation at other amino-acid positions within the ATP-binding cavity. In particular, BbCDPK4 and PfCDPK1 are sensitive to a larger fraction of compounds than EtCDPK1 despite the presence of a threonine gatekeeper in all three CDPKs. PMID:24927073

  19. Molecular phylogenetic analysis of the coccidian cephalopod parasites Aggregata octopiana and Aggregata eberthi (Apicomplexa: Aggregatidae) from the NE Atlantic coast using 18S rRNA sequences.

    PubMed

    Castellanos-Martínez, Sheila; Pérez-Losada, Marcos; Gestal, Camino

    2013-08-01

    The coccidia genus Aggregata is responsible for intestinal coccidiosis in wild and cultivated cephalopods. Two coccidia species, Aggregata octopiana, (infecting the common octopus Octopus vulgaris), and A. eberthi, (infecting the cuttlefish Sepia officinalis), are identified in European waters. Extensive investigation of their morphology resulted in a redescription of A. octopiana in octopuses from the NE Atlantic Coast (NW Spain) thus clarifying confusing descriptions recorded in the past. The present study sequenced the 18S rRNA gene in A. octopiana and A. eberthi from the NE Atlantic coast in order to assess their taxonomic and phylogenetic status. Phylogenetic analyses revealed conspecific genetic differences (2.5%) in 18S rRNA sequences between A. eberthi from the Ria of Vigo (NW Spain) and the Adriatic Sea. Larger congeneric differences (15.9%) were observed between A. octopiana samples from the same two areas, which suggest the existence of two species. Based on previous morphological evidence, host specificity data, and new molecular phylogenetic analyses, we suggest that A. octopiana from the Ria of Vigo is the valid type species.

  20. Molecular Phylogeny and Ultrastructure of Caliculium glossobalani n. gen. et sp. (Apicomplexa) from a Pacific Glossobalanus minutus (Hemichordata) Confounds the Relationships Between Marine and Terrestrial Gregarines.

    PubMed

    Wakeman, Kevin C; Reimer, James D; Jenke-Kodama, Holger; Leander, Brian S

    2014-01-01

    Gregarines are a diverse group of apicomplexan parasites with a conspicuous extracellular feeding stage, called a "trophozoite", that infects the intestines and other body cavities of invertebrate hosts. Although the morphology of trophozoites is very diverse in gregarines as a whole, high degrees of intraspecific variation combined with relatively low degrees of interspecific variation make the delimitation of different species based on trophozoite morphology observed with light microscopy difficult. The coupling of molecular phylogenetic data with comparative morphology has shed considerable light onto the boundaries and interrelationships of different gregarine species. In this study, we isolated a novel marine gregarine from the hepatic region of a Pacific representative of the hemichordate Glossobalanus minutus, and report the first ultrastructural and molecular data from any gregarine infecting this distinctive group of hosts. Molecular phylogenetic analyses of an SSU rDNA sequence derived from two single-cell isolates of this marine gregarine demonstrated a strong and unexpected affiliation with a clade of terrestrial gregarines (e.g. Gregarina). This molecular phylogenetic data combined with a comparison of the morphological features in previous reports of gregarines collected from Atlantic representatives of G. minutus justified the establishment of a new binomial for the new isolate, namely Caliculium glossobalani n. gen. et sp. The molecular phylogenetic analyses demonstrated a clade of terrestrial gregarines associated with a sequence acquired from a marine species, which suggest that different groups of terrestrial/freshwater gregarines evolved independently from marine ancestors. PMID:24702818

  1. Two new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875 (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from emerald tree skinks, Lamprolepis smaragdina (Lesson) (Sauria: Scincidae) from Papua New Guinea and the Philippines.

    PubMed

    McAllister, Chris T; Seville, R Scott; Duszynski, Donald W; Bush, Sarah E; Fisher, Robert N; Austin, Christopher C

    2013-10-01

    Two new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875, from emerald tree skinks, Lamprolepis smaragdina (Lesson) are described from specimens collected in Papua New Guinea (PNG) and the Philippines. Oöcysts of Eimeria nuiailan n. sp. from the only L. smaragdina from PNG are ovoidal, with a smooth, colourless, bi-layered wall, measure 23.7 × 19.1 μm, and have a length/width (L/W) ratio of 1.3; both micropyle and oöcyst residuum are absent, but a fragmented polar granule is present. Sporocysts are ovoidal to ellipsoidal, 11.9 × 7.0 μm, L/W 1.7, and the wall is composed of two valves joined by a longitudinal suture; neither Stieda nor sub-Stieda bodies are present; a sporocyst residuum is present as a compact mass of granules. Sporozoites are elongate, 14.6 × 2.6 μm, and contain anterior and posterior refractile bodies with a nucleus between them. Oöcysts of Eimeria auffenbergi n. sp. from L. smaragdina collected in the Philippines are ovoidal, with a smooth, colourless, bi-layered wall, measure 19.9 × 15.8 μm, L/W 1.3; both micropyle and oöcyst residuum are absent, but one to four polar granules are present. Sporocysts are ovoidal to ellipsoidal, 10.3 × 5.8 μm, L/W 1.8, and the wall is composed of two valves joined by a longitudinal suture; neither Stieda nor sub-Stieda bodies are present; a sporocyst residuum is composed of dispersed granules. PMID:24048748

  2. Morphological and molecular characterization of Eimeria purpureicephali n. sp. (Apicomplexa:Eimeriidae) in a red-capped parrot (Purpureicephalus spurius, Kuhl, 1820) in Western Australia

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Rongchang; Brice, Belinda; Ryan, Una

    2016-01-01

    A new Eimeria species is described from a red-capped parrot (Purpureicephalus spurius). Sporulated oocysts (n = 31) were spherical to subspherical, with a rough bilayered oocyst wall 0.8 μm thick. Oocysts measured 24.0 × 22.8 (20.4–26.4 × 18.3–25.9) μm, oocyst length/width ratio, 1.10. Oocyst residuum, polar granule and micropyle were absent. Sporocysts are elongate-ovoid, 11.0 × 7.3 (12.7–9.2 × 7.9–6.6) μm, sporocyst length/width ratio, 1.51 (1.33–1.71). The thin convex Stieda body and indistinct substieda bodies were present and the sporocyst residuum was composed of numerous small granules less than 1.0 μm in diameter dispersed randomly. Each sporocyst contained 2 sausage-shaped sporozoites in head-to-tail arrangement. The sporozoite nuclei were located centrally surrounded by refractile bodies. Molecular analysis was conducted at two loci; the 18S ribosomal RNA gene and the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I gene. At the18S locus, the new isolate shared 99.0% genetic similarity with Eimeria dispersa and Eimeria innocua from the turkey. At the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I gene locus, this new isolate was most closely related to E. dispersa and E. innocua, presented 99.0% and 98.0% genetic similarity, respectively. This new isolate and E. dispersa grouped together in the same clade. Based on the morphological and molecular data, this isolate is a new species of coccidian parasite, which is named Eimeria purpureicephali n. sp. after its host, the red-capped parrot (Purpureicephalus spurius). PMID:26977403

  3. Host-parasite associations of Eimeria spp. (Apicomplexa:Eimeriidae) in kangaroos and wallabies of the genus Macropus (Marsupialia:Macropodidae).

    PubMed

    Barker, I K; O'Callaghan, M G; Beveridge, I

    1989-05-01

    Faecal samples from 514 kangaroos and wallabies representing 12 species of the genus Macropus were examined for oocysts of Eimeria spp. Six species of Eimeria were redescribed from their type hosts, and on the basis of finding homologous oocysts in the faeces of other Macropus spp., host ranges for these coccidia were extended. Eimeria hestermani Mykytowycz, 1964 is redescribed from M. giganteus (eastern grey kangaroo) and is described from M. fuliginosus (western grey kangaroo), M. rufogriseus (red-necked wallaby), M. dorsalis (black-striped wallaby), and M. eugenii (tammar wallaby). E. toganmainensis Mykytowycz, 1964 is redescribed from M. rufus (red kangaroo) and the host range is extended to M. giganteus, M. fuliginosus, M. rufogriseus and M. eugenii. E. wilcanniensis Mykytowycz, 1964 is redescribed from M. rufus, and the host range is extended to M. giganteus, M. fuliginosus and M. robustus (euro or wallaroo). E. macropodis Wenyon & Scott, 1925 is redescribed from M. rufogriseus, and is described from M. giganteus, M. fuliginosus, M. rufus, M. irma (western brush wallaby), M. parryi (whip-tailed wallaby), M. dorsalis, M. eugenii, and M. parma (parma wallaby). E. fausti Yakimoff & Matschoulsky, 1936, E. cunnamullensis Mykytowycz, 1964 and E. purchasei Mykytowycz, 1964 are synonymized with E. macropodis. E. marsupialium Yakimoff & Matschoulsky, 1936 is redescribed from M. giganteus, and from M. fuliginosus. E. gungahlinensis Mykytowycz, 1964 is redescribed from M. fuliginosus, and from M. giganteus. Seven new species of Eimeria are described. E. flindersi, new species, is described from M. eugenii, M. rufogriseus, and M. antilopinus (antilopine wallaroo). E. prionotemni, new species, is described from M. eugenii, M. parryi, M. rufogriseus, M. agilis (agile wallaby) and M. dorsalis. E. mykytowyczi, new species, is described from M. agilis, M. antilopinus, and M. parryi. E. parryi, new species, is described from M. parryi. E. yathongensis, new species, is described from M. fuliginosus and M. giganteus. E. parma, new species, is described from M. parma, and E. desmaresti, new species, is described from M. rufogriseus. E. kogoni Mykytowycz, 1964, and E. rufusi Prasad, 1960 are considered species inquirendae. The host-parasite associations of these coccidia, and of similar species of Eimeria in other genera of Macropodoid marsupials, are discussed in relation to the postulated phylogeny of the hosts.

  4. Morphological and molecular characterization of Choleoeimeria pogonae n. sp. coccidian parasite (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae, 1989, Paperna and Landsberg) in a western bearded dragon (Pogona minor minor).

    PubMed

    Yang, Rongchang; Brice, Belinda; Ryan, Una

    2016-01-01

    A new species, Choleoeimeria pogonae n. sp. is described from a Western bearded dragon (Pogona minor minor) in Western Australia. Sporulated oocysts (n = 48) were cylindroidal in shape. Oocyst length, 27.0 (26.0-28.3) μm, oocyst width, 15.2 (14.0-16.5) μm, oocyst length/width ratio (L/W) 1.8 (1.6-1.9), each with 4 sporocysts (Eimeria-like) and a polar granule, but lacking a micropyle and oocyst residuum. Sporocysts are ovoidal in shape, sporocyst length, 10.0 (9.0-11.0) μm, sporocyst width 8.5 (7.0-9.5) μm, sporocyst L/W ratio, 1.2 (1.1-1.3). Stieda, substieda and parasubstieda bodies were all absent. Molecular analysis was conducted at the 18S rRNA and cytochrome c oxidase I (COI) loci. Phylogenetic analysis of 18S sequences revealed that C. pogonae n. sp. grouped together with another four Choleoeimeria spp. and exhibited 99.1%-99.4% genetic similarity. At the COI locus, C. pogonae n. sp. was in an independent clade and had the highest similarity (80.4%) to Eimeria cf. mivati from a chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus). According to the morphological and molecular data, this isolate is a new species of coccidian parasite. This study further supports the taxonomy of Choleoeimeria spp. as a new genus based on molecular phylogenetic analysis.

  5. Numerical and functional responses to the presence of a competitor--the case of Aggregata sp. (Apicomplexa: Aggregatidae) and Octopicola superba (Copepoda: Octopicolidae).

    PubMed

    Cavaleiro, F I; Santos, M J

    2014-02-01

    Evidence of interference competition between the eimeriorin coccidian Aggregata sp. and the octopicolid copepod Octopicola superba at the level of the gills of naturally infected Octopus vulgaris is evaluated. Numerical and functional responses are considered for analysis, and the fundamental and realized spatial niches (FSNs and RSNs) are measured as part of the study. While it was not possible to measure the FSN of Aggregata sp., the analysis of the infection levels of O. superba recorded for non-concomitantly and concomitantly infected hosts suggests that the gills and body skin constitute, respectively, the main and accessory sites of infection of the parasite. According to the evidence found, the gills function mainly as an accessory site of infection of Aggregata sp., in specimens in which the caecum and intestine are massively infected. Evidence for a negative interaction between Aggregata sp. and O. superba has been found while controlling for a potential confounding effect of host size. Furthermore, the presence of O. superba on gill lamellae appears to have been negatively affected by the presence of Aggregata sp., while this latter remained mostly undisturbed. The mean number of oocysts of Aggregata sp. in the gills was higher in spring and summer, which were also the seasons presenting the broadest RSN for O. superba. PMID:24148558

  6. A new species of Eimeria (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from tri-colored bats, Perimyotis subflavus (Chiroptera: Vespertilionidae), from the Ouachitas of Arkansas.

    PubMed

    McAllister, Chris T; Seville, R Scott; Arlen, Robert; Connior, Matthew B

    2014-10-01

    Between February 2013 and October 2013, eleven tri-colored bats, Perimyotis subflavus were collected from Marion, Polk, and Searcy counties, Arkansas, and their faeces examined for coccidian parasites. Two of eleven (18%) harboured an eimerian that we describe here as new. Oocysts of Eimeria mcdanieli sp. n. were ellipsoidal to elongate with a bi-layered wall and measured (length × width, L × W) 28.3 × 17.9 μm, with an L/W ratio of 1.6. A micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent but a single polar granule was present. Sporocysts were ovoidal, 12.6 × 8.3 μm, with an L/W ratio of 1.5. A pronounced, nipple-like Stieda body was present as well as a substieda body. A sporocyst residuum was present as dispersed bubble-like granules. This is the third coccidian described from tri-colored bats and the sixth species reported from Arkansas chiropterans. In addition, both infected bats harbored a concurrent infection of Eimeria heidti McAllister, Burt, Seville, and Robison, 2011.

  7. Seven new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875 (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from colubrid snakes of Guatemala and a discussion of what to call ellipsoid tetrasporocystic, dizoic coccidia of reptiles.

    PubMed

    Asmundsson, I M; Duszynski, D W; Campbell, J A

    2006-06-01

    During a survey of Guatemalan herpetofauna in the summers of 1998-2000, 29 presumed new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875 were found, seven of which have a distinct elongate-ellipsoidal shape (L/W ratio >or= 1.7) and are described herein. Six of the seven new species are similar in oöcyst length, width and L/W ratio and sporocyst length, width and L/W ratio, lack a micropyle, oöcyst residuum, Stieda body, sub-- and parastieda bodies, have a polar granule and sporocyst residuum, and their sporocysts appear to have dehiscence sutures. The seventh is slightly smaller and has sporocysts with a Stieda body. The new species are: E. coniophanes n. sp - whose sporulated oöcysts from Coniophanes fissidens are 29.2x14.9 (27-31x13-16) microm, with sporocysts 10.0 x 7.8 microm; E. coniophis n. sp. -from Conophis lineatus are 32.0x16.5 (30-34x14-18) microm, with sporocysts 10.2 x 8.9microm; E. dryomarchoni n. sp. - from Drymarchon corais are 32.2x17.7 (31-34x17-19) microm, with sporocysts 10.7 x 8.6 microm; E. leptophis n. sp. - from Leptophis mexicanus are 29.5x17.0 (28-31x16-18) microm, with sporocysts 10.0 x 9.1 microm; E. oxybelis n. sp. - from Oxybelis aeneus are 31.8x16.5 (29-33x15-18) microm, with sporocysts 10.3 x 8.8 microm; and E. scaphiodontophis n. sp. - from Scaphiodontophis annulatus are 30.0x15.3 (28-33x14-16) microm, with sporocysts 9.9 x 7.9 microm. Sporulated oöcysts of E. siboni n. sp. from Sibon nebulata are 24.3x14.2 (21-27x13-16) microm, with sporocysts 10.0 x 7.1 microm and with a Stieda body. We conclude that until all aspects of each life-cycle are known, it is prudent at this time to name all tetrasporocystic dizoic coccidia from snakes as members of Eimeria rather than place some of them in Choleoeimeria Paperna & Landsberg, 1989.

  8. A Comparison of Multiple Methods for Estimating Parasitemia of Hemogregarine Hemoparasites (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina) and Its Application for Studying Infection in Natural Populations

    PubMed Central

    Maia, João P.; Harris, D. James; Carranza, Salvador; Gómez-Díaz, Elena

    2014-01-01

    Identifying factors influencing infection patterns among hosts is critical for our understanding of the evolution and impact of parasitism in natural populations. However, the correct estimation of infection parameters depends on the performance of detection and quantification methods. In this study, we designed a quantitative PCR (qPCR) assay targeting the 18 S rRNA gene to estimate prevalence and intensity of Hepatozoon infection and compared its performance with microscopy and PCR. Using qPCR, we also compared various protocols that differ in the biological source and the extraction methods. Our results show that the qPCR approach on DNA extracted from blood samples, regardless of the extraction protocol, provided the most sensitive estimates of Hepatozoon infection parameters; while allowed us to differentiate between mixed infections of Adeleorinid (Hepatozoon) and Eimeriorinid (Schellackia and Lankesterella), based on the analysis of melting curves. We also show that tissue and saline methods can be used as low-cost alternatives in parasitological studies. The next step was to test our qPCR assay in a biological context, and for this purpose we investigated infection patterns between two sympatric lacertid species, which are naturally infected with apicomplexan hemoparasites, such as the genera Schellackia (Eimeriorina) and Hepatozoon (Adeleorina). From a biological standpoint, we found a positive correlation between Hepatozoon intensity of infection and host body size within each host species, being significantly higher in males, and higher in the smaller sized host species. These variations can be associated with a number of host intrinsic factors, like hormonal and immunological traits, that require further investigation. Our findings are relevant as they pinpoint the importance of accounting for methodological issues to better estimate infection in parasitological studies, and illustrate how between-host factors can influence parasite distributions in sympatric natural populations. PMID:24743340

  9. Sarcocystis caninum and Sarcocystis svanai n. spp. (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) Associated with Severe Myositis and Hepatitis in the Domestic Dog (Canis familiaris).

    PubMed

    Dubey, Jitender P; Sykes, Jane E; Shelton, G Diane; Sharp, Nick; Verma, Shiv K; Calero-Bernal, Rafael; Viviano, Jenifer; Sundar, Natarajan; Khan, Asis; Grigg, Michael E

    2015-01-01

    There are several reports of Sarcocystis sarcocysts in muscles of dogs, but these species have not been named. Additionally, there are two reports of Sarcocystis neurona in dogs. Here, we propose two new names, Sarcocystis caninum, and Sarcocystis svanai for sarcocysts associated with clinical muscular sarcocystosis in four domestic dogs (Canis familiaris), one each from Montana and Colorado in the USA, and two from British Columbia, Canada. Only the sarcocyst stage was identified. Most of the sarcocysts identified were S. caninum. Sarcocysts were studied using light microscopy, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and polymerase chain reaction. Based on collective results two new species, S. caninum and S. svanai were designated. Sarcocystis caninum and S. svanai were structurally distinct. Sarcocystis caninum sarcocysts were up to 1.2 mm long and up to 75 μm wide. By light microscopy, the sarcocyst wall was relatively thin and smooth. By TEM, the sarcocyst wall was "type 9", 1-2 μm thick, and contained villar protrusions that lacked microtubules. Bradyzoites in sections were 7-9 μm long. Sarcocysts of S. svanai were few and were identified by TEM. Sarcocystis svanai sarcocysts were "type 1", thin walled (< 0.5 μm), and the wall lacked villar protrusions but had tiny blebs that did not invaginate. DNA was extracted either from infected frozen muscle biopsies or formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded sections. Dogs were either singly infected with S. caninum or multiply co-infected with S. caninum and S. svanai (the result of a mixed infection) based on multilocus DNA sequencing and morphology. BLASTn analysis established that the sarcocysts identified in these dogs were similar to, but not identical to Sarcocystis canis or Sarcocystis arctosi, parasites found to infect polar bears (Ursus maritimus) or brown bears (Ursus arctosi), respectively. However, the S. caninum sequence showed 100% identify over the 18S rRNA region sequenced to that of S. arctica, a parasite known to infect Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus). PMID:25256157

  10. Evolutionary plasticity in coccidia - striking morphological similarity of unrelated coccidia (apicomplexa) from related hosts: Eimeria spp. from African and Asian Pangolins (Mammalia: Pholidota).

    PubMed

    Jirků, Miloslav; Kvičerová, Jana; Modrý, David; Hypša, Václav

    2013-07-01

    Two morphologically similar, but phylogenetically unrelated Eimeria species from ancient mammals, African Tree Pangolin Phataginus tricuspis and Sunda Pangolin Manis javanica (Pholidota: Manidae), from two distant biogeographic realms (Afrotropical and Oriental), are characterized and compared morphologically and molecularly. Phylogenetic analyses produced an unstable topology. However, while precise position of the two Eimeria species from pangolins could not be firmly established due to the lack of related taxa, it is evident that they are not closely related and do not fall into any of the so far recognized eimerian lineages. Moreover, an eimerian found in P. tricuspis is described as a new species Eimeria nkaka n. sp., based on morphology of oocysts, endogenous developmental stages and sequence data. PMID:23837921

  11. Environmental Persistence and Infectivity of Oocysts of Two Species of Gregarines, Blabericola migrator and Blabericola cubensis (Apicomplexa: Eugregarinida: Blabericolidae), Parasitizing Blaberid Cockroaches (Dictyoptera: Blaberidae).

    PubMed

    Clopton, Richard E; Steele, Shelby M; Clopton, Debra T

    2016-04-01

    For apicomplexan parasites using an oral-fecal transmission route with significant environmental exposure, the environmental persistence and infectivity of the oocyst has a direct impact on local infection dynamics, including the ability to withstand extended periods without readily available hosts. Herein we quantify the environmental persistence and infectivity of the oocysts of 2 septate gregarine species at controlled temperature and humidity and demonstrate that they can persist over multiple generational time spans. Species of Blabericola generally complete their endogenous life cycles from oocyst to oocyst within 10 days. The median residual environmental oocyst lifetime for Blabericola oocysts in this study is 21-28 days, but a significant number of oocysts of Blabericola migrator persisted and remained infective in the environment for up to 39 days while those of Blabericola cubensis persisted and remained infective for up to 92 days. Although long-lived relative to their own generational time, the oocysts of Blabericola species infecting cockroaches are short-lived relative to gregarines infecting tenebrionid beetles. For these gregarines, oocysts can persist in the environment and remain infective for up to 787 days. Mechanistically, environmental persistence and infectivity are probably energy-limited phenomena related to the amount of stored amylopectin and the basal metabolic rate of quiescent oocysts.

  12. The 3D Structure of the Apical Complex and Association with the Flagellar Apparatus Revealed by Serial TEM Tomography in Psammosa pacifica, a Distant Relative of the Apicomplexa

    PubMed Central

    Okamoto, Noriko; Keeling, Patrick J.

    2014-01-01

    The apical complex is one of the defining features of apicomplexan parasites, including the malaria parasite Plasmodium, where it mediates host penetration and invasion. The apical complex is also known in a few related lineages, including several non-parasitic heterotrophs, where it mediates feeding behaviour. The origin of the apical complex is unclear, and one reason for this is that in apicomplexans it exists in only part of the life cycle, and never simultaneously with other major cytoskeletal structures like flagella and basal bodies. Here, we used conventional TEM and serial TEM tomography to reconstruct the three dimensional structure of the apical complex in Psammosa pacifica, a predatory relative of apicomplexans and dinoflagellates that retains the archetype apical complex and the flagellar apparatus simultaneously. The P. pacifica apical complex is associated with the gullet and consists of the pseudoconoid, micronemes, and electron dense vesicles. The pseudoconoid is a convex sheet consisting of eight short microtubules, plus a band made up of microtubules that originate from the flagellar apparatus. The flagellar apparatus consists of three microtubular roots. One of the microtubular roots attached to the posterior basal body is connected to bypassing microtubular strands, which are themselves connected to the extension of the pseudoconoid. These complex connections where the apical complex is an extension of the flagellar apparatus, reflect the ancestral state of both, dating back to the common ancestor of apicaomplexans and dinoflagellates. PMID:24392150

  13. Intestinal coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) of Brazilian lizards. Eimeria carmelinoi n.sp., from Kentropyx calcarata and Acroeimeria paraensis n.sp. from Cnemidophorus lemniscatus lemniscatus (Lacertilia: Teiidae).

    PubMed

    Lainson, Ralph

    2002-03-01

    Eimeria carmelinoi n.sp., is described in the teiid lizard Kentropyx calcarata Spix, 1825 from north Brazil. Oocysts subspherical to spherical, averaging 21.25 x 20.15 micro m. Oocyst wall smooth, colourless and devoid of striae or micropyle. No polar body or conspicuous oocystic residuum, but frequently a small number of fine granules in Brownian movement. Sporocysts, averaging 10.1 x 9 microm, are without a Stieda body. Endogenous stages characteristic of the genus: intra-cytoplasmic, within the epithelial cells of the ileum and above the host cell nucleus. A re-description is given of a parasite previously described as Eimeria cnemidophori, in the teiid lizard Cnemidophorus lemniscatus lemniscatus. A study of the endogenous stages in the ileum necessitates renaming this coccidian as Acroeimeria cnemidophori (Carini, 1941) nov.comb., and suggests that Acroeimeria pintoi Lainson & Paperna, 1999 in the teiid Ameiva ameiva is a synonym of A. cnemidophori. A further intestinal coccidian, Acroeimeria paraensis n.sp. is described in C. l. lemniscatus, frequently as a mixed infection with A. cnemidophori. Mature oocysts, averaging 24.4 x 21.8 microm, have a single-layered, smooth, colourless wall with no micropyle or striae. No polar body, but the frequent presence of a small number of fine granules exhibiting Brownian movements. Sporocysts 9 x 8, without a Stieda body. Endogenous stages epicytoplasmic, characteristic of the genus, in the upper ileum. The importance of a study of the endogenous stages of eimeriid coccidia is discussed.

  14. Discovery of the principal specific transcription factors of Apicomplexa and their implication for the evolution of the AP2-integrase DNA binding domains

    PubMed Central

    Balaji, S.; Babu, M. Madan; Iyer, Lakshminarayan M.; Aravind, L.

    2005-01-01

    The comparative genomics of apicomplexans, such as the malarial parasite Plasmodium, the cattle parasite Theileria and the emerging human parasite Cryptosporidium, have suggested an unexpected paucity of specific transcription factors (TFs) with DNA binding domains that are closely related to those found in the major families of TFs from other eukaryotes. This apparent lack of specific TFs is paradoxical, given that the apicomplexans show a complex developmental cycle in one or more hosts and a reproducible pattern of differential gene expression in course of this cycle. Using sensitive sequence profile searches, we show that the apicomplexans possess a lineage-specific expansion of a novel family of proteins with a version of the AP2 (Apetala2)-integrase DNA binding domain, which is present in numerous plant TFs. About 20–27 members of this apicomplexan AP2 (ApiAP2) family are encoded in different apicomplexan genomes, with each protein containing one to four copies of the AP2 DNA binding domain. Using gene expression data from Plasmodium falciparum, we show that guilds of ApiAP2 genes are expressed in different stages of intraerythrocytic development. By analogy to the plant AP2 proteins and based on the expression patterns, we predict that the ApiAP2 proteins are likely to function as previously unknown specific TFs in the apicomplexans and regulate the progression of their developmental cycle. In addition to the ApiAP2 family, we also identified two other novel families of AP2 DNA binding domains in bacteria and transposons. Using structure similarity searches, we also identified divergent versions of the AP2-integrase DNA binding domain fold in the DNA binding region of the PI-SceI homing endonuclease and the C-terminal domain of the pleckstrin homology (PH) domain-like modules of eukaryotes. Integrating these findings, we present a reconstruction of the evolutionary scenario of the AP2-integrase DNA binding domain fold, which suggests that it underwent multiple independent combinations with different types of mobile endonucleases or recombinases. It appears that the eukaryotic versions have emerged from versions of the domain associated with mobile elements, followed by independent lineage-specific expansions, which accompanied their recruitment to transcription regulation functions. PMID:16040597

  15. Observations on the life history and descriptions of coccidia (Apicomplexa) from the western chorus frog, Pseudacris triseriata triseriata, from eastern Nebraska.

    PubMed

    Bolek, Matthew G; Janovy, John; Irizarry-Rovira, Armando R

    2003-06-01

    Two hundred and twenty-four anurans of 6 species (47 adults and 16 tadpoles of Rana blairi, 35 R. catesbeiana, 31 Hyla chrysoscelis, 30 adults and 46 tadpoles of Pseudacris triseriata triseriata, 11 Bufo woodhousii, and 8 Acris crepitans) from Pawnee Lake, Lancaster County, Nebraska, were surveyed for coccidian parasites during March 2001 to May 2002. Of these, 23 of 30 (77%) adults and 4 of 46 (9%) tadpoles of P. t. triseriata shed oocysts of Isospora cogginsi n. sp. Oocysts of I. cogginsi were ovoid, 19.3 x 15.1 (18-23 x 11-20) microm, with a thin, smooth, colorless, single-layered wall, with no micropyle or oocyst residuum. Sporocysts were ovoid, 13.3 x 9.9 (11-15 x 9-13) microm, with a thin, colorless, smooth wall, and Stieda body absent. Sporocyst residuum was present, 5.5 x 5.3 (4-7 x 4-7) microm, consisting of numerous granules. Histological examination of frogs and tadpoles infected with the new species revealed endogenous stages including mature meronts, developing microgamonts, mature microgametes, mature macrogamonts, and young unsporulated oocysts located in the cytoplasm of the epithelial cells of the small intestine. Concurrently, 2 adult P. t. triseriata shed oocysts of Eimeria streckeri. Oocysts of E. streckeri were spherical, 15.7 x 15.4 (14-17 x 14-19) microm, with a thin, smooth, single-layered, colorless wall with an oocyst residuum composed of numerous granules surrounding a large vacuolated area, with a previously undescribed globularlike body present within the vacuole, and no micropyle. Sporocysts were ovoid, 9.1 x 6.1 (7-10 x 5-7) microm, with a thin, colorless, smooth wall with a Stieda body and sporocyst residuum. Our results are the first to document infection of adult and tadpole stages of frogs of the same species with the same species of coccidian, indicating that adult frogs may contaminate breeding ponds with oocysts during their breeding season and infect tadpoles directly by the ingestion of sporulated oocysts. PMID:12880252

  16. Intestinal coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) of Brazilian lizards. Eimeria carmelinoi n.sp., from Kentropyx calcarata and Acroeimeria paraensis n.sp. from Cnemidophorus lemniscatus lemniscatus (Lacertilia: Teiidae).

    PubMed

    Lainson, Ralph

    2002-03-01

    Eimeria carmelinoi n.sp., is described in the teiid lizard Kentropyx calcarata Spix, 1825 from north Brazil. Oocysts subspherical to spherical, averaging 21.25 x 20.15 micro m. Oocyst wall smooth, colourless and devoid of striae or micropyle. No polar body or conspicuous oocystic residuum, but frequently a small number of fine granules in Brownian movement. Sporocysts, averaging 10.1 x 9 microm, are without a Stieda body. Endogenous stages characteristic of the genus: intra-cytoplasmic, within the epithelial cells of the ileum and above the host cell nucleus. A re-description is given of a parasite previously described as Eimeria cnemidophori, in the teiid lizard Cnemidophorus lemniscatus lemniscatus. A study of the endogenous stages in the ileum necessitates renaming this coccidian as Acroeimeria cnemidophori (Carini, 1941) nov.comb., and suggests that Acroeimeria pintoi Lainson & Paperna, 1999 in the teiid Ameiva ameiva is a synonym of A. cnemidophori. A further intestinal coccidian, Acroeimeria paraensis n.sp. is described in C. l. lemniscatus, frequently as a mixed infection with A. cnemidophori. Mature oocysts, averaging 24.4 x 21.8 microm, have a single-layered, smooth, colourless wall with no micropyle or striae. No polar body, but the frequent presence of a small number of fine granules exhibiting Brownian movements. Sporocysts 9 x 8, without a Stieda body. Endogenous stages epicytoplasmic, characteristic of the genus, in the upper ileum. The importance of a study of the endogenous stages of eimeriid coccidia is discussed. PMID:12016449

  17. Two new species of coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from leaf-tailed geckos, Uroplatus spp. (Sauria: Gekkonidae) from Madagascar, including a new host of Eimeria brygooi Upton & Barnard, 1987.

    PubMed

    McAllister, Chris T; Scott Seville, R; Hartdegen, Ruston

    2016-10-01

    During May and June 2015, four common leaf-tailed geckos, Uroplatus fimbriatus (Schneider), five satanic leaf-tailed geckos, Uroplatus phantasticus (Boulenger), and four mossy leaf-tailed geckos, Uroplatus sikorae Boettger originally collected from Madagascar and housed at the Dallas Zoo, USA, had their faeces examined for coccidian parasites. Eight (62%) geckos were found to be passing oöcysts, including a new eimerian, a new isosporan and a previously described eimerian. Three of four (75%) U. fimbratus (type-host) and one of five (20%) U. phantasticus were infected with Eimeria schneideri n. sp.; oöcysts were subspheroidal to ellipsoidal with a bi-layered wall and measured (mean length × width, L × W) 15.1 × 13.5 µm, with a length/width (L/W) ratio of 1.1. A micropyle and oöcyst residuum were absent but one to many polar granules were present. Sporocysts were ovoidal, 6.9 × 5.3 µm, L/W = 1.3. Stieda, sub-Stieda and para-Stieda bodies were absent. A globular sporocyst residuum was present as dispersed granules. Four of five (80%) U. phantasticus harboured Isospora boulengeri n. sp.; oöcysts were subpheroidal to ellipsoidal with a bi-layered wall and measured 17.3 × 16.0 µm, L/W = 1.1. A micropyle and oöcyst residuum were absent but a polar granule was present. Sporocysts were ellipsoidal, 9.5 × 6.9 µm, L/W = 1.4. Stieda and sub-Stieda bodies were present but a para-Stieda body was absent. A globular sporocyst residuum was present with dispersed granules. In addition, one of four (25%) U. sikorae was infected with an eimerian indistinguishable from Eimeria brygooi Upton & Barnard, 1987, previously reported from Madagascar day gecko, Phelsuma grandis Gray and golddust day gecko, Phelsuma laticauda (Boettger) from Madagascar. These are the first coccidians described from Uroplatus spp. PMID:27638735

  18. A new species of Eimeria (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from tri-colored bats, Perimyotis subflavus (Chiroptera: Vespertilionidae), from the Ouachitas of Arkansas

    PubMed Central

    McAllister, Chris T.; Seville, R. Scott; Arlen, Robert; Connior, Matthew B.

    2014-01-01

    Between February 2013 and October 2013, eleven tri-colored bats, Perimyotis subflavus were collected from Marion, Polk, and Searcy counties, Arkansas, and their faeces examined for coccidian parasites. Two of eleven (18%) harboured an eimerian that we describe here as new. Oocysts of Eimeria mcdanieli sp. n. were ellipsoidal to elongate with a bi-layered wall and measured (length × width, L × W) 28.3 × 17.9 µm, with an L/W ratio of 1.6. A micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent but a single polar granule was present. Sporocysts were ovoidal, 12.6 × 8.3 µm, with an L/W ratio of 1.5. A pronounced, nipple-like Stieda body was present as well as a substieda body. A sporocyst residuum was present as dispersed bubble-like granules. This is the third coccidian described from tri-colored bats and the sixth species reported from Arkansas chiropterans. In addition, both infected bats harbored a concurrent infection of Eimeria heidti McAllister, Burt, Seville, and Robison, 2011. PMID:25236281

  19. First report and description of a Cyrilia sp. (Apicomplexa: Haemogregarinidae) from a freshwater Cururu Stingray Potamotrygon cf. histrix (Elasmobranchii: Potamotrygonidae), from the Amazon Region, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Magro, N M; de Oliveira, A T; O'Dwyer, L H

    2016-08-01

    A haemogregarine is described in 12 cururu stingray (Potamotrygon cf. histrix), from Mariuá Archipelago, Negro River, in the Brazilian Amazon Basin. All animals, both male and female, were parasitized by the haemogregarine and parasitaemia varied between 0.8% and 10% of erythrocytes. The stages observed included trophozoites or merozoites, suspected meronts, and gamonts presumed to be of two types, macrogamonts and microgamonts. Most stages were observed inside mature erythrocytes, while others were extracellular. The stages observed were most similar to those characteristics of the genus Cyrilia, than to any other fish haemogregarine and may represent a new Cyrilia species.

  20. Coccidial dispersion across New World marsupials: Klossiella tejerai Scorza, Torrealba & Dagert, 1957 (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina) from the Brazilian common opossum Didelphis aurita (Wied-Neuwied) (Mammalia: Didelphimorphia).

    PubMed

    Dos Santos, Caroline Spitz; Berto, Bruno Pereira; do Bomfim Lopes, Bruno; Cordeiro, Matheus Dias; da Fonseca, Adivaldo Henrique; Filho, Walter Leira Teixeira; Lopes, Carlos Wilson Gomes

    2014-09-01

    Klossiella tejerai Scorza, Torrealba & Dagert, 1957 is a primitive coccidian parasite reported from the New World marsupials Didelphis marsupialis (Linnaeus) and Marmosa demerarae (Thomas). The current work describes K. tejerai from the Brazilian common opossum Didelphis aurita (Wied-Neuwied) in Southeastern Brazil, evidencing the coccidial dispersion across opossums of the same family. The sporocysts recovered from urine samples were ellipsoidal, 20.4 × 12.7 µm, with sporocyst residuum composed of scattered spherules and c.13 sporozoites per sporocyst, with refractile bodies and nucleus. Macrogametes, microgametes, sporonts, sporoblasts/sporocysts were identified within parasitophorous vacuoles of epithelial cells located near the renal corticomedullary junction. Didelphis marsupialis should not have transmitted K. tejerai to D. aurita because they are not sympatric; however M. demerarae is sympatric with D. marsupialis and D. aurita. Therefore, D. aurita becomes the third host species for K. tejerai in South America.

  1. Life cycle of Hepatozoon affluomaloti sp. n. (Apicomplexa: Haemogregarinidae) in crag lizards (Sauria: Cordylidae) and in culicine mosquitoes from South Africa.

    PubMed

    Van As, Johann; Davies, Angela J; Smit, Nico J

    2015-01-01

    A new haemogregarine species Hepatozoon affluomaloti sp. n. is described from erythrocytes in the peripheral blood of crag lizards Pseudocordylus melanotus (Smith) and Pseudocordylus subviridis (Smith) (Sauria: Cordylidae) from mountainous regions in the Eastern Free State, South Africa. This species can be distinguished from all other congeners based on its large size, staining properties and life cycle development in its vector, Culex (Afroculex) lineata (Theobald) (Diptera: Culicidae). Mature gamonts stain mostly uniformly pinkish-purple with Giemsa, sometimes containing darker azurophilic granules anterior and posterior to the nucleus. The reflexed posterior extremity of the gamont stage sometimes stains slightly deeper purple and the nucleus is dense and placed in the posterior third of the parasite body. Merogonic stages of this haemogregarine occur in the liver tissues of P. melanotus with dizoic meronts. Macromeronts contains 2-7 macromerozoites and micromeronts contains 9-24 micromerozoites. Sporogonic developmental stages found in the proposed final host and vector, C. lineata, include large oocysts, measuring 54 × 48 µm on average. Sporulating oocysts with 8 nuclei are present in mosquitoes 6-7 days post-feeding on infected lizards. Sporocysts with mature sporozoites measure 31.0 × 21.8 µm on average and each contains 2-8 large sporozoites. It is suggested that transmission of infective sporozoites is achieved through predation of lizards on mosquitoes. PMID:25960552

  2. Effects of Developmental Temperature on Gametocysts and Oocysts of Two Species of Gregarines Blabericola migrator and Blabericola cubensis (Apicomplexa: Eugregarinida: Blabericolidae) Parasitizing Blaberid Cockroaches (Dictyoptera: Blaberidae).

    PubMed

    Kolman, Jon A; Clopton, Richard E; Clopton, Debra T

    2015-12-01

    Abiotic environmental conditions, especially temperature and humidity, have profound effects on the growth and development of gregarines, but these effects remain largely undocumented. Quantifying the effects of environmental conditions on the growth and development of exogenous gregarine ontogenetic stages is an important first step in understanding the transmission, population dynamics, and environmental persistence of gregarine infection. In this study, we examined the effect of 6 environmental temperatures (10, 18, 22, 27, 35, and 40 C) at constant humidity (0 mmHg vapor pressure deficit) on gametocyst development and oocyst viability in 2 gregarine species: Blabericola migrator and Blabericola cubensis parasitizing the Tiger-striped Hissing Cockroach, Princisia vanwaerebecki, and the Discoid Cockroach, Blaberus discoidalis, respectively. Temperature has a significant effect on gametocyst development and oocyst viability for both gregarine species. Gametocyst development for both gregarine species displays a similar threshold response to environmental temperature: 10 and 40 C represent extremes outside their developmental range, but within these extremes, the relationship between gametocyst development and temperature is weakly direct. Dehiscence increased with temperature from 68% at 18 C to 93% at 22 C and remained at that level through 35 C. Developmental temperature also has a meaningful but inverse effect on oocyst viability of both B. migrator and B. cubensis. For both species, oocyst viability is highest at 18 and 22 C and is significantly reduced at 27 and 35 C. Thus oocyst production and sporozoite viability are linked but environmentally independent phenomena. Overall, there is an acceptable developmental temperature zone for B. migrator and B. cubensis that ranges from 18 to 27 C, but production of viable sporozoites is greatest in a relatively narrow zone around 22 C. Prior studies have postulated that mechanisms that concentrate oocysts and hosts, such as host behavior or host microhabitat preference, increase the host-oocyst encounter rate and thus transmission. This study indicates that abiotic influences on gametocyst development may also lead to heterogeneous oocyst distributions in the environment and increase the likelihood of host-oocyst encounters.

  3. New host and distributional records for Cryptosporidium sp. (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporidiidae) from lizards (Sauria: Gekkonidae, Scincidae) from the Cook Islands and Vanuatu, South Pacific

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McAllister, Chris T.; Duszynski, Donald W.; Fisher, Robert N.

    2013-01-01

    Between 1991 and 1993, 295 lizards, comprising 21 species in 2 families (Gekkonidae, Scincidae) from the Cook Islands, Fiji, Palau, Takapoto, and Vanuatu in the South Pacific, were examined for Cryptosporidium oocysts. Only 6 lizards (2%) were found to be passing Cryptosporidium oocysts in their feces, including 2 of 30 (7%) Oceania geckos, Gehyra oceanica, from Rarotonga, Cook Islands, and 4 of 26 (15%) Pacific blue-tailed skinks, Emoia caeruleocauda, from Efate Island, Vanuatu. This represents the largest survey for Cryptosporidium in Pacific island lizards, and we document 2 new host and 2 new locality records for this parasite genus.

  4. Experimental transmission of Cryptosporidium molnari (Apicomplexa: Coccidia) to gilthead sea bream (Sparus aurata L.) and European sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax L.).

    PubMed

    Sitjà-Bobadilla, A; Alvarez-Pellitero, P

    2003-10-01

    Cryptosporidium molnari was experimentally transmitted to gilthead sea bream (Sparus aurata) and European sea bass (Dicentrachus labrax) by oral infection with infected stomach scrapings. The infection was also cross-transmitted from infected gilthead sea bream to sea bass by cohabitation. The course of the infection was assessed after necropsy by three microscopic diagnostic methods and their sensitivity was compared. At the end of all the experiments the prevalence of infection reached 100%. In the oral experiments, both fish hosts appeared infected as early as 7 days post exposure (p.e.), but gilthead sea bream exhibited a higher intensity of infection and infection proceeded at a faster rate than in sea bass. The cellular host reaction was stronger in sea bass than in sea bream, whereas the histopathological effect was lower in the former. Transmission could be favoured by cannibalism among cohabiting fish. This is the first report on piscine Cryptosporidium transmission. The implications for the aquaculture industry are discussed. PMID:12923629

  5. Coccidian parasites (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from insectivores. III. Seven new species in shrews (Soricidae: Soricinae) from Canada, Japan, and the United States.

    PubMed

    Hertel, L A; Duszynski, D W

    1987-02-01

    Since May 1979, 458 shrews (Blarina sp. and Sorex spp.) representing 20 species collected in Canada, Japan, and the United States were examined for coccidia; 110 (24%) had oocysts in their feces, including 8 of 21 (38%) B. brevicauda from Massachusetts, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Vermont; 2 of 7 (29%) S. caecutiens from Hokkaido and Honshu; 14 of 63 (22%) S. cinereus from Colorado, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Manitoba, and Ontario; 3 of 7 (43%) S. fontinalis from Pennsylvania; 11 of 16 (69%) S. fumeus from Massachusetts, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and Ontario; 1 of 4 (25%) S. haydeni from Minnesota; 6 of 8 (75%) S. longirostris from Florida and Virginia; 1 of 2 (50%) S. ornatus from California; 5 of 12 (42%) S. pacificus from California and Oregon; 13 of 41 (32%) S. palustris from California, Colorado, and New Mexico; 1 of 2 (50%) S. tenellus from California; 11 of 105 (10%) S. trowbridgii from California, Oregon, and Washington; 10 of 48 (21%) S. unguiculatus from Hokkaido; and 24 of 112 (21%) S. vagrans from Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Oregon, and Washington. The following coccidians were identified from infected shrews: Eimeria brevicauda n. sp. from B. brevicauda; Eimeria fumeus n. sp. from S. fumeus, S. pacificus, S. unguiculatus, and S. vagrans; Eimeria inyoni n. sp. from S. tenellus; Eimeria palustris n. sp. from S. cinereus, S. fontinalis, S. fumeus, S. haydeni, S. longirostris, S. ornatus, S. pacificus, S. palustris, S. tenellus, S. trowbridgii, and S. vagrans; Eimeria vagrantis n. sp. from S. fumeus, S. trowbridgii, and S. vagrans; Isospora brevicauda n. sp. from B. brevicauda; and Isospora palustris n. sp. from S. pacificus, S. palustris, S. trowbridgii, S. unguiculatus, and S. vagrans. The world literature on coccidian parasites of shrews (16 eimerians and 3 isosporans exclusive of the 7 new species described here) is reviewed. PMID:3572649

  6. Two new species of Eimeria (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from emerald tree skinks, Lamprolepis smaragdina (Sauria: Scincidae) from Papua New Guinea and the Philippines

    PubMed Central

    McAllister, Chris T.; Seville, R. Scott; Duszynski, Donald W.; Bush, Sarah E.; Fisher, Robert N.; Austin, Christopher C.

    2014-01-01

    Two new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875, from emerald tree skinks, Lamprolepis smaragdina (Lesson) are described from specimens collected in Papua New Guinea (PNG) and the Philippines. Oöcysts of Eimeria nuiailan sp. n. from the only L. smaragdina from PNG are ovoidal, with a smooth, colourless, bilayered wall, measure 23.7 × 19.1 μm, and have a length/width (L/W) ratio of 1.3; both micropyle and oöcyst residuum are absent, but a fragmented polar granule is present. Sporocysts are ovoidal to ellipsoidal, 11.9 × 7.0 μm, L/W 1.7, and the wall is composed of 2 valves joined by a longitudinal suture; neither Stieda nor sub-Stieda bodies are present; a sporocyst residuum is present as a compact mass of granules. Sporozoites are elongate, 14.6 × 2.6 μm, and contain anterior and posterior refractile bodies with a nucleus between them. Oöcysts of Eimeria auffenbergi sp. n. from both L. smaragdina we collected in the Philippines are ovoidal, with a smooth, colorless, bilayered wall, measure 19.9 × 15.8 μm, L/W 1.3; both micropyle and oöcyst residuum are absent, but 1–4 polar granules are present. Sporocysts are ovoidal to ellipsoidal, 10.3 × 5.8 μm, L/W 1.8, and the wall is composed of 2 valves joined by a longitudinal suture; neither Stieda nor sub-Stieda bodies are present; a sporocyst residuum is composed of dispersed granules. PMID:24048748

  7. Description of a new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875 (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the western Derby eland Taurotragus derbianus derbianus Gray (Artiodactyla: Bovidae) in Senegal.

    PubMed

    Máca, Ondřej

    2012-06-01

    Examination of faecal samples from semi-captive western Derby elands Taurotragus derbianus derbianus Gray, in the Bandia and Fathala Reserves of Senegal, revealed the presence of oöcysts of the genus Eimeria Schneider, 1875 that we considered to represent a new species, Eimeria derbiani n. sp. The new species possesses nearly ellipsoidal oöcysts (length/width ratio 1.3) with a bi-layered wall and an average size of 27.6 × 21.5 μm. E. derbiani possesses a micropyle covered by a micropylar cap and ovoidal, single-layered sporocysts with an average size of 14.9 × 7.7 μm, each with a Stieda body. Sporozoites of E. derbiani possess a large refractile body and a nucleus. Sporulation lasted for 2 days at 23°C. The new species is differentiated from the two species parasitising Taurotragus oryx Pallas, E. canna Triffitt, 1924 and E. triffittae Yakimoff, 1934. PMID:22581248

  8. Molecular Phylogeny and Ultrastructure of Caliculium glossobalani n. gen. et sp. (Apicomplexa) from a Pacific Glossobalanus minutus (Hemichordata) Confounds the Relationships Between Marine and Terrestrial Gregarines.

    PubMed

    Wakeman, Kevin C; Reimer, James D; Jenke-Kodama, Holger; Leander, Brian S

    2014-01-01

    Gregarines are a diverse group of apicomplexan parasites with a conspicuous extracellular feeding stage, called a "trophozoite", that infects the intestines and other body cavities of invertebrate hosts. Although the morphology of trophozoites is very diverse in gregarines as a whole, high degrees of intraspecific variation combined with relatively low degrees of interspecific variation make the delimitation of different species based on trophozoite morphology observed with light microscopy difficult. The coupling of molecular phylogenetic data with comparative morphology has shed considerable light onto the boundaries and interrelationships of different gregarine species. In this study, we isolated a novel marine gregarine from the hepatic region of a Pacific representative of the hemichordate Glossobalanus minutus, and report the first ultrastructural and molecular data from any gregarine infecting this distinctive group of hosts. Molecular phylogenetic analyses of an SSU rDNA sequence derived from two single-cell isolates of this marine gregarine demonstrated a strong and unexpected affiliation with a clade of terrestrial gregarines (e.g. Gregarina). This molecular phylogenetic data combined with a comparison of the morphological features in previous reports of gregarines collected from Atlantic representatives of G. minutus justified the establishment of a new binomial for the new isolate, namely Caliculium glossobalani n. gen. et sp. The molecular phylogenetic analyses demonstrated a clade of terrestrial gregarines associated with a sequence acquired from a marine species, which suggest that different groups of terrestrial/freshwater gregarines evolved independently from marine ancestors.

  9. First report and description of a Cyrilia sp. (Apicomplexa: Haemogregarinidae) from a freshwater Cururu Stingray Potamotrygon cf. histrix (Elasmobranchii: Potamotrygonidae), from the Amazon Region, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Magro, N M; de Oliveira, A T; O'Dwyer, L H

    2016-08-01

    A haemogregarine is described in 12 cururu stingray (Potamotrygon cf. histrix), from Mariuá Archipelago, Negro River, in the Brazilian Amazon Basin. All animals, both male and female, were parasitized by the haemogregarine and parasitaemia varied between 0.8% and 10% of erythrocytes. The stages observed included trophozoites or merozoites, suspected meronts, and gamonts presumed to be of two types, macrogamonts and microgamonts. Most stages were observed inside mature erythrocytes, while others were extracellular. The stages observed were most similar to those characteristics of the genus Cyrilia, than to any other fish haemogregarine and may represent a new Cyrilia species. PMID:26642832

  10. Evolutionary plasticity in coccidia - striking morphological similarity of unrelated coccidia (apicomplexa) from related hosts: Eimeria spp. from African and Asian Pangolins (Mammalia: Pholidota).

    PubMed

    Jirků, Miloslav; Kvičerová, Jana; Modrý, David; Hypša, Václav

    2013-07-01

    Two morphologically similar, but phylogenetically unrelated Eimeria species from ancient mammals, African Tree Pangolin Phataginus tricuspis and Sunda Pangolin Manis javanica (Pholidota: Manidae), from two distant biogeographic realms (Afrotropical and Oriental), are characterized and compared morphologically and molecularly. Phylogenetic analyses produced an unstable topology. However, while precise position of the two Eimeria species from pangolins could not be firmly established due to the lack of related taxa, it is evident that they are not closely related and do not fall into any of the so far recognized eimerian lineages. Moreover, an eimerian found in P. tricuspis is described as a new species Eimeria nkaka n. sp., based on morphology of oocysts, endogenous developmental stages and sequence data.

  11. Sarcocystis caninum and Sarcocystis svanai n. spp. (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) associated with severe myositis and hepatitis in the domestic dog (Canis familiaris)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Sarcocystis species have a 2-host life cycle with carnivores as definitive hosts and herbivores as intermediate hosts. Occasionally dogs are definitive as well as intermediate hosts for Sarcocystis species. There are several reports of Sarcocystis sarcocysts in muscles of dogs but these species have...

  12. Morphological and molecular characterization of Eimeria labbeana-like (Apicomplexa:Eimeriidae) in a domestic pigeon (Columba livia domestica, Gmelin, 1789) in Australia.

    PubMed

    Yang, Rongchang; Brice, Belinda; Elloit, Aileen; Ryan, Una

    2016-07-01

    An Eimeria species is described from a domestic pigeon (Columba livia domestica). Sporulated oocysts (n = 35) were subspherical, with a smooth bi-layered oocyst wall (1.0 μm thick). Oocysts measured 20.2 × 16.1 (22.0-18.9 × 15.7-18.9) μm, oocyst length/width (L/W) ratio, 1.38. Oocyst residuum and a polar granule were present. The micropyle was absent. Sporocysts are elongate-ovoid, 13.0 × 6.1 (14.5-12.5 × 5.5-7.0) μm, sporocyst L/W ratio, 2.13 (2.0-2.2), sporocyst residuum was present, composed of numerous granules in a spherical or ovoid mass. Each sporocyst contained 2 banana-shaped sporozoites, 12.3 × 3.5 (11.8-13.0 × 3.3-3.6) μm. A spherical-ellipsoid posterior refractile body was found in the sporozoites. A nucleus was located immediately anterior to the posterior refractile body. Molecular analysis was conducted at three loci; the 18S and 28S ribosomal RNA genes and the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase gene (COI). At the 18S locus, the new isolate shared 98.0% genetic similarity with three Isospora isolates from Japan from the domestic pigeon (Columba livia domestica). At the 28S locus, it grouped separately and shared 92.4% and 92.5% genetic similarity with Isospora anthochaerae (KF766053) from a red wattlebird (Anthochaera carunculata) from Australia and an Isospora sp. (MS-2003 - AY283845) from a Himalayan grey-headed bullfinch (Pyrrhula erythaca) respectively. At COI locus, this new isolate was in a separate clade and shared 95.6% and 90.0% similarity respectively with Eimeria tiliquae n. sp. from a shingleback skink in Australia and an Eimeria sp. from a common pheasant (Phasianus colchicus) from America. Based on the morphological data, this isolate is most similar to Eimeria labbeana. As no molecular data for E. labbeana is available and previous morphological data is incomplete, we refer to the current isolate as E. labbeana-like.

  13. Revision of the genus Stictospora and description of Stictospora villani, n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eugregarinida: Actinocephalidae) from larvae of the Japanese beetle, Popillia japonica (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae), in Michigan.

    PubMed

    Hays, Joanna; Clopton, Richard E; Cappaert, David L; Smitley, David R

    2004-12-01

    Stictospora villani n. sp. is described from larvae of the Japanese beetle Popillia japonica (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae) from southern Michigan. Stictospora villani is distinguished from known species of the genus by differences in gamont size and by structural details of the epimerite. In general, S. villani is smaller than other known species of the genus and possesses an epimerite with a margin of 20-24 sympetalous, pendulate, narrowly to very narrowly elliptoid lamina. Previously described species are characterized by epimerites with notably fewer marginal lamina. A heretofore unrecognized protistan is diagnosed from the coelomic fat bodies and tentatively placed within the Neogregarinorida. We conclude that previous workers have mistaken this neogregarine for the gametocyst and oocyst of Stictospora, which are described in this study for the first time. The generic diagnosis of Stictospora is revised to encompass the epimeritic variation of its constituent species and to correctly reflect the morphology of the oocyst.

  14. Redescription of Goussia neglecta n. comb. (Nöller, 1920) (Apicomplexa; Coccidia) and notes on its occurrence in the gut of tadpoles.

    PubMed

    Molnár, K

    1995-01-01

    Coccidian infection in Rana ridibunda and R. esculenta tadpoles was recorded in Hungarian fish farms. Oocysts enclosed in yellow bodies were found in the faeces and in the intestinal epithelium. Developmental stages also had intraepithelial sites. The species was identified with Eimeria neglecta Nöller, 1920; however, on the basis of its oocyst morphology it was transferred to the genus Goussia. Besides stages of Goussia neglecta n. comb., intranuclear trophozoites of another coccidian species were also recorded.

  15. Two new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875 (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from emerald tree skinks, Lamprolepis smaragdina (Lesson) (Sauria: Scincidae) from Papua New Guinea and the Philippines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McAllister, Chris T.; Seville, R. Scott; Duszynski, Donald W.; Bush, Sarah E.; Fisher, Robert N.; Austin, Christopher C.

    2013-01-01

    Two new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875, from emerald tree skinks, Lamprolepis smaragdina (Lesson) are described from specimens collected in Papua New Guinea (PNG) and the Philippines. Oöcysts of Eimeria nuiailan n. sp. from the only L. smaragdina from PNG are ovoidal, with a smooth, colourless, bi-layered wall, measure 23.7 × 19.1 μm, and have a length/width (L/W) ratio of 1.3; both micropyle and oöcyst residuum are absent, but a fragmented polar granule is present. Sporocysts are ovoidal to ellipsoidal, 11.9 × 7.0 μm, L/W 1.7, and the wall is composed of two valves joined by a longitudinal suture; neither Stieda nor sub-Stieda bodies are present; a sporocyst residuum is present as a compact mass of granules. Sporozoites are elongate, 14.6 × 2.6 μm, and contain anterior and posterior refractile bodies with a nucleus between them. Oöcysts of Eimeria auffenbergi n. sp. from L. smaragdina collected in the Philippines are ovoidal, with a smooth, colourless, bi-layered wall, measure 19.9 × 15.8 μm, L/W 1.3; both micropyle and oöcyst residuum are absent, but one to four polar granules are present. Sporocysts are ovoidal to ellipsoidal, 10.3 × 5.8 μm, L/W 1.8, and the wall is composed of two valves joined by a longitudinal suture; neither Stieda nor sub-Stieda bodies are present; a sporocyst residuum is composed of dispersed granules.

  16. A new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875 (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) from the Solomon ground skink, Sphenomorphus solomonis (Boulenger) (Sauria: Scincidae) from Papua New Guinea

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McAllister, Chris T.; Duszynski, Donald W.; Fisher, Robert N.; Austin, Christopher C.

    2014-01-01

    Between September 1990 and November 1991, 19 Sphenomorphus spp. skinks, including nine S. jobiense, three S. simus, and seven Solomon ground skinks, S. solomonis (Boulenger), were collected from Madang and Morobe Provinces, Papua New Guinea (PNG), and examined for coccidia. A single S. solomonis was found to be infected with a new species of Eimeria Schneider, 1875. Oöcysts of Eimeria perkinsae n. sp. are ellipsoidal with a smooth, colourless, bi-layered wall, measure 18.6 × 14.7 μm, and have a length/width (L/W) ratio of 1.3; both micropyle and oöcyst residuum are absent, but a fragmented polar granule is present. Sporocysts are ovoidal, 8.9 × 6.4 μm, L/W 1.4; neither Stieda, sub-Stieda or para-Stieda bodies are present; a sporocyst residuum consisted of a loose cluster of granules dispersed between sporozoites. Sporozoites are comma-shaped with spheroidal anterior and posterior refractile bodies. This represents the first report of coccidia from this skink genus.

  17. Molecular and phylogenetic characterizations of an Eimeria krijgsmanni Yakimoff & Gouseff, 1938 (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) mouse intestinal protozoan parasite by partial 18S ribosomal RNA gene sequence analysis.

    PubMed

    Takeo, Toshinori; Tanaka, Tetsuya; Matsubayashi, Makoto; Maeda, Hiroki; Kusakisako, Kodai; Matsui, Toshihiro; Mochizuki, Masami; Matsuo, Tomohide

    2014-08-01

    Previously, we characterized an undocumented strain of Eimeria krijgsmanni by morphological and biological features. Here, we present a detailed molecular phylogenetic analysis of this organism. Namely, 18S ribosomal RNA gene (rDNA) sequences of E. krijgsmanni were analyzed to incorporate this species into a comprehensive Eimeria phylogeny. As a result, partial 18S rDNA sequence from E. krijgsmanni was successfully determined, and two different types, Type A and Type B, that differed by 1 base pair were identified. E. krijgsmanni was originally isolated from a single oocyst, and thus the result show that the two types might have allelic sequence heterogeneity in the 18S rDNA. Based on phylogenetic analyses, the two types of E. krijgsmanni 18S rDNA formed one of two clades among murine Eimeria spp.; these Eimeria clades reflected morphological similarity among the Eimeria spp. This is the third molecular phylogenetic characterization of a murine Eimeria spp. in addition to E. falciformis and E. papillata.

  18. A linear mitochondrial genome of Cyclospora cayetanensis (Eimeriidae, Eucoccidiorida, Coccidiasina, Apicomplexa) suggests the ancestral start position within mitochondrial genomes of eimeriid coccidia

    PubMed Central

    Ogedengbe, Mosun E.; Qvarnstrom, Yvonne; da Silva, Alexandre J.; Arrowood, Michael J.; Barta, John R.

    2015-01-01

    The near complete mitochondrial (mt)genome for Cyclospora cayetanensis is 6184 bp in length with three protein-coding genes (Cox1, Cox3, CytB) and numerous lsrDNA and ssrDNA fragments. Gene arrangements were conserved with other coccidia in the Eimeriidae, but the C. cayetanensis mt genome is not circular-mapping. Terminal transferase tailing and nested PCR completed the 5’-terminus of the genome starting with a 21bp A/T-only region that forms a potential stem-loop. Regions homologous to the C. cayetanensis mt genome 5’-terminus are found in all eimeriid mt genomes available and suggest this may be the ancestral start of eimeriid mt genomes. PMID:25812835

  19. Sarcocystis caninum and Sarcocystis svanai n. spp. (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) Associated with Severe Myositis and Hepatitis in the Domestic Dog (Canis familiaris).

    PubMed

    Dubey, Jitender P; Sykes, Jane E; Shelton, G Diane; Sharp, Nick; Verma, Shiv K; Calero-Bernal, Rafael; Viviano, Jenifer; Sundar, Natarajan; Khan, Asis; Grigg, Michael E

    2015-01-01

    There are several reports of Sarcocystis sarcocysts in muscles of dogs, but these species have not been named. Additionally, there are two reports of Sarcocystis neurona in dogs. Here, we propose two new names, Sarcocystis caninum, and Sarcocystis svanai for sarcocysts associated with clinical muscular sarcocystosis in four domestic dogs (Canis familiaris), one each from Montana and Colorado in the USA, and two from British Columbia, Canada. Only the sarcocyst stage was identified. Most of the sarcocysts identified were S. caninum. Sarcocysts were studied using light microscopy, transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and polymerase chain reaction. Based on collective results two new species, S. caninum and S. svanai were designated. Sarcocystis caninum and S. svanai were structurally distinct. Sarcocystis caninum sarcocysts were up to 1.2 mm long and up to 75 μm wide. By light microscopy, the sarcocyst wall was relatively thin and smooth. By TEM, the sarcocyst wall was "type 9", 1-2 μm thick, and contained villar protrusions that lacked microtubules. Bradyzoites in sections were 7-9 μm long. Sarcocysts of S. svanai were few and were identified by TEM. Sarcocystis svanai sarcocysts were "type 1", thin walled (< 0.5 μm), and the wall lacked villar protrusions but had tiny blebs that did not invaginate. DNA was extracted either from infected frozen muscle biopsies or formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded sections. Dogs were either singly infected with S. caninum or multiply co-infected with S. caninum and S. svanai (the result of a mixed infection) based on multilocus DNA sequencing and morphology. BLASTn analysis established that the sarcocysts identified in these dogs were similar to, but not identical to Sarcocystis canis or Sarcocystis arctosi, parasites found to infect polar bears (Ursus maritimus) or brown bears (Ursus arctosi), respectively. However, the S. caninum sequence showed 100% identify over the 18S rRNA region sequenced to that of S. arctica, a parasite known to infect Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus).

  20. Redescription of Haemogregarina garnhami (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina) from the blood of Psammophis schokari (Serpentes: Colubridae) as Hepatozoon garnhami n. comb. based on molecular, morphometric and morphologic characters.

    PubMed

    Abdel-Baki, Abdel-Azeem S; Al-Quraishy, Saleh; Zhang, J Y

    2014-06-01

    Hepatozoon garnhami n. comb. was redescribed from Schokari sand snakes (Psammophis schokari) collected from Riyadh city in Saudi Arabia. Gametocytes were found in the peripheral blood of 2 of 15 snakes examined. Based on the similar morphological and morphometric characteristics, the same host and a similar host habitat environment, it can be concluded for the first time that the present species is conspecific with Haemogregarina garnhami previously reported from Psammophis shokari aegyptius. To further characterize this parasite, the partial 18S rRNA gene was amplified and sequenced. The sequence analysis also showed that Haemogregarina garnhami should be reassigned into the genus Hepatozoon as Hepatozoon garnhami which has 99.5% (859/863 bp) sequence similarity to Hepatozoon ayorgbor, infecting the erythrocytes of Python regius in Ghana. Phylogenetic analysis showed that H. garnhami formed a mixed clade with Hepatozoon spp. from geckos, snakes and rodents and ophidian Hepatozoon spp. did not form a separated phylogenetic unit. Also, Psammophis schokari-infecting Hepatozoon contained several different genetic lineages. To our knowledge, the present work extends the geographic distribution of H. garnhami and is the first report of Hepatozoon infection in snakes from Saudi Arabia.

  1. Intestinal coccidiosis of anadromous and landlocked alewives, Alosa pseudoharengus, caused by Goussia ameliae n. sp. and G. alosii n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae)

    PubMed Central

    Lovy, Jan; Friend, Sarah E.

    2015-01-01

    Anadromous alewives, Alosa pseudoharengus, have experienced significant population level declines caused by factors including habitat destruction. Alewives occur in two different life histories, anadromous and landlocked forms. The landlocked alewife evolved from ancestral anadromous populations, resulting in an exclusively freshwater and phenotypically unique form. The occurrence of parasites in a host is linked to the environment, making alewives an ideal model to compare parasitology within a single species with contrasting life histories. Currently, little information exists on the presence and impacts of parasites in these fish populations; the present study sets out to better understand coccidiosis in the threatened anadromous populations and to understand how coccidian parasites compare in both life history forms. The intestinal coccidian, Goussia ameliae n. sp., was described infecting the pyloric cecum of 76% and 86% of young-of-the-year and adult anadromous alewives, respectively, from the Maurice River, New Jersey, USA. The coccidian was found in landlocked alewife populations with a prevalence of 92% and 34% in YOY and adult fish, respectively. An analysis of the small subunit 18S ribosomal RNA gene of G. ameliae from both life history forms demonstrated that the coccidian had 100% sequence identity, confirming the same parasite species in both forms. Though genetic analysis demonstrated G. ameliae to be identical, some differences were observed in sporulation and morphology of the parasite within the two populations. The sporocysts in anadromous populations were shorter and wider, and sporulation timing differed from that of landlocked fish. These differences may either be attributed to differences in the host type or to the sporulation environment. Lastly, alewives from landlocked populations were frequently co-infected with a second coccidian species in the posterior intestine, which occurred at a lower prevalence. This species, G. alosii n. sp., was described based on morphological characters of the sporulated oocysts in fresh parasitological preparations. PMID:25853050

  2. Sarcocystis clethrionomyelaphis Matuschka, 1986 (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) infecting the large oriental vole Eothenomys miletus (Thomas) (Cricetidae: Microtinae) and its phylogenetic relationships with other species of Sarcocystis Lankester, 1882.

    PubMed

    Hu, Jun-Jie; Liu, Ting-Ting; Liu, Qiong; Esch, G W; Chen, Jin-Qing

    2015-07-01

    Sarcocystis clethrionomyelaphis Matuschka, 1986 was first identified in skeletal muscles of 47 (75.8%) of 62 large oriental voles Eothenomys miletus (Thomas) captured between March 2012 and May 2014 in Anning Prefecture of Yunnan Province (China). Sarcocyst walls were thick and possessed villous protrusions measuring 3.5-5.5 μm in length. Beauty rat snakes Elaphe taeniura (Cope) fed sarcocysts of the species shed sporulated oöcysts measuring 13-18×9-13 (16×12) μm with a prepatent period of 16 to 17 days. Phylogenetic analysis based on 18S rRNA gene sequences revealed a close relationship between S. clethrionomyelaphis and other colubrid-transmitted species of Sarcocystis Lankester, 1882. This is the first report identifying S. clethrionomyelaphis from its natural intermediate host. PMID:26063304

  3. Morphological and molecular characterization of Eimeria purpureicephali n. sp. (Apicomplexa:Eimeriidae) in a red-capped parrot (Purpureicephalus spurius, Kuhl, 1820) in Western Australia.

    PubMed

    Yang, Rongchang; Brice, Belinda; Ryan, Una

    2016-04-01

    A new Eimeria species is described from a red-capped parrot (Purpureicephalus spurius). Sporulated oocysts (n = 31) were spherical to subspherical, with a rough bilayered oocyst wall 0.8 μm thick. Oocysts measured 24.0 × 22.8 (20.4-26.4 × 18.3-25.9) μm, oocyst length/width ratio, 1.10. Oocyst residuum, polar granule and micropyle were absent. Sporocysts are elongate-ovoid, 11.0 × 7.3 (12.7-9.2 × 7.9-6.6) μm, sporocyst length/width ratio, 1.51 (1.33-1.71). The thin convex Stieda body and indistinct substieda bodies were present and the sporocyst residuum was composed of numerous small granules less than 1.0 μm in diameter dispersed randomly. Each sporocyst contained 2 sausage-shaped sporozoites in head-to-tail arrangement. The sporozoite nuclei were located centrally surrounded by refractile bodies. Molecular analysis was conducted at two loci; the 18S ribosomal RNA gene and the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I gene. At the18S locus, the new isolate shared 99.0% genetic similarity with Eimeria dispersa and Eimeria innocua from the turkey. At the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I gene locus, this new isolate was most closely related to E. dispersa and E. innocua, presented 99.0% and 98.0% genetic similarity, respectively. This new isolate and E. dispersa grouped together in the same clade. Based on the morphological and molecular data, this isolate is a new species of coccidian parasite, which is named Eimeria purpureicephali n. sp. after its host, the red-capped parrot (Purpureicephalus spurius). PMID:26977403

  4. Hepatozoon spp. (Apicomplexa: Hepatozoidae) infection and selected hematological values of the neotropical rattlesnake, Crotalus durissus collilineatus (Linnaeus, 1758) (Serpentes: Viperidae), from Brazil.

    PubMed

    Motta, Rafael Otávio Cançado; Cunha, Lucas Maciel; Leite, Romário Cerqueira; da Silva, Israel José; Pinto, Ana Cristina Araújo; Braga, Erika Martins; da Cunha, Arildo Pinto; de Oliveira, Paulo Roberto

    2011-09-01

    This study aims to establish the hematological values of Crotalus durissus collilineatus snakes captured in Brazil as well as to verify the effects of hematozoan infection on these snakes. Eighty-three blood samples were drawn from C. d. collilineatus specimens for analysis. The sample set was composed of 30 males and 30 females, recently caught from the wild, and 11 males and 12 females bred in captivity. Blood samples were used to determine red blood cell counts, white blood cell counts, thrombocyte counts, hematocrit values, hemoglobin concentration, and total plasma protein. Blood smears were used to diagnose Hepatozoon spp. infection and to calculate the parasitic load in the sample as well as the percentage of immature red cells. Results obtained for the wild-caught animals, with and without parasites, were compared among themselves and with the values obtained for the captive-bred animals. Hematological values for C. durissus were established. Wild-caught snakes had an infection rate of 38.3%, while no Hepatozoon sp. infection was detected in the captive-bred animals. The snakes which were not infected by the Hepatozoon sp. exhibited average weight, length, and weight-length ratios higher than those of the infected animals. An increase in immature red cells was noted in the Hepatozoon-infected snakes. PMID:22950311

  5. Redescription of Haemogregarina garnhami (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina) from the blood of Psammophis schokari (Serpentes: Colubridae) as Hepatozoon garnhami n. comb. based on molecular, morphometric and morphologic characters.

    PubMed

    Abdel-Baki, Abdel-Azeem S; Al-Quraishy, Saleh; Zhang, J Y

    2014-06-01

    Hepatozoon garnhami n. comb. was redescribed from Schokari sand snakes (Psammophis schokari) collected from Riyadh city in Saudi Arabia. Gametocytes were found in the peripheral blood of 2 of 15 snakes examined. Based on the similar morphological and morphometric characteristics, the same host and a similar host habitat environment, it can be concluded for the first time that the present species is conspecific with Haemogregarina garnhami previously reported from Psammophis shokari aegyptius. To further characterize this parasite, the partial 18S rRNA gene was amplified and sequenced. The sequence analysis also showed that Haemogregarina garnhami should be reassigned into the genus Hepatozoon as Hepatozoon garnhami which has 99.5% (859/863 bp) sequence similarity to Hepatozoon ayorgbor, infecting the erythrocytes of Python regius in Ghana. Phylogenetic analysis showed that H. garnhami formed a mixed clade with Hepatozoon spp. from geckos, snakes and rodents and ophidian Hepatozoon spp. did not form a separated phylogenetic unit. Also, Psammophis schokari-infecting Hepatozoon contained several different genetic lineages. To our knowledge, the present work extends the geographic distribution of H. garnhami and is the first report of Hepatozoon infection in snakes from Saudi Arabia. PMID:24827101

  6. Phylogenetic analysis based on 18S rRNA gene sequences of Schellackia parasites (Apicomplexa: Lankesterellidae) reveals their close relationship to the genus Eimeria.

    PubMed

    Megía-Palma, R; Martínez, J; Merino, S

    2013-08-01

    In the present study we detected Schellackia haemoparasites infecting the blood cells of Lacerta schreiberi and Podarcis hispanica, two species of lacertid lizards from central Spain. The parasite morphometry, the presence of a refractile body, the type of infected blood cells, the kind of host species, and the lack of oocysts in the fecal samples clearly indicated these blood parasites belong to the genus Schellackia. Until now, the species of this genus have never been genetically characterized and its taxonomic position under the Lankesterellidae family is based on the lack of the exogenous oocyst stage. However, the phylogenetic analysis performed on the basis of the 18S rRNA gene sequence revealed that species of the genus Schellackia are clustered with Eimeria species isolated from a snake and an amphibian species but not with Lankesterella species. The phylogenetic analysis rejects that both genera share a recent common ancestor. Based on these results we suggest a revision of the taxonomic status of the family Lankesterellidae. PMID:23731491

  7. Sarcocystis masoni, n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae), and redescription of Sarcocystis aucheniae from llama (Lama glama), guanaco (Lama guanicoe) and alpaca (Vicugna pacos)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    There is considerable confusion concerning the species of Sarcocystis in South American camelids (SAC). Several species names have been used, however, proper descriptions are lacking. In the present paper we redescribe the macroscopic sarcocyst forming Sarcocystis aucheniae and describe and name the...

  8. A survey of coccidian infections of freshwater fishes of Peninsular Malaysia, with descriptions of three species of Goussia Labbé, 1896 (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae).

    PubMed

    Molnár, K; Shaharom-Harrison, F; Székely, Cs

    2003-05-01

    Ninety-five specimens of 14 freshwater fish species from small streams in the Kuala Terengganu district and the Lake Kenyir Reservoir, Malaysia, were surveyed for coccidian infections. Six fish species proved to be infected with apicomplexans belonging to the genus Goussia. In all of these fishes Goussia species were found in unsporulated and semisporulated stages. Oöcysts of four species inhabiting the intestinal epithelium became sporulated in tap-water within 24 hours. In two fish species sporulation failed and only unsporulated oöcysts were recorded in the intestine. Three of the intestinal species finishing sporulation proved to be new to science and were described as Goussia malayensis n. sp., G. bettae n. sp. and G. pogonognathi n. sp. from Apocheilus panchax, Betta splendens and Hemirhamphodon pogonognatus, respectively. The fourth species, found in Trichogaster pectoralis, was identified as G. trichogasteri Székely & Molnár, 1992, a species known from aquarium-cultured T. trichopterus. PMID:12815211

  9. Elongation Factor-1a is a novel protein associated with host cell invasion and a potential protective antigen of Cryptosporidium parvum*

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The phylum Apicomplexa comprises obligate intracellular parasites that infect vertebrates. All invasive forms of Apicomplexa possess a unique complex of organelles at the anterior end, referred to as the apical complex, which is involved in host cell invasion. Previously, we generated the chicken m...

  10. A Floral Transcriptome for Hippeastrum (Amaryllidaceae)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Two transcriptomes have been constructed from floral tissue of two Hippeastrum (Amaryllidaceae) species, H. brasilianum (Traub & J.L.Doran) Dutilh and H. papilio (Ravenna) Van Scheepan. The former has fragrant flowers, while flowers of the latter do not produce floral fragrance. RNA was isolated a...

  11. Cystoisospora canis (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae): development of monozoic tissue cysts in human cells, demonstration of egress of zoites from tissue cysts, and demonstration of repeat monozoic tissue cyst formation by zoites.

    PubMed

    Houk, Alice E; Lindsay, David S

    2013-11-01

    Sporozoites of Cystoisospora canis penetrated and developed to monozoic tissue cysts in 4 human, 1 monkey, 1 bovine and 2 canine cell lines. No asexual division was documented although multiple infection of a single cell was observed. Examination of cultures using transmission electron microscopy demonstrated that they were monozoic tissue cysts and contained a single sporozoite. The appearance of monozoic tissue cysts in all cell lines was similar but the parasitophorous vacuole surrounding some sporozoites in DH82 dog macrophages was swollen. Monozoic tissue cysts were observed for up to 127 days in human pigmented retinal epithelial cells. Treatment of cell cultures containing monozoic tissue cysts with 0.75 sodium taurocholic acid and 0.25% trypsin stimulated egress of zoites (former sporozoites) from tissue cysts. Zoites collected from monozoic tissue cysts were able to penetrate and develop to monozoic tissue cysts in new host cells. Monozoic tissue cysts survived exposure to acid pepsin solution indicating that they would be orally infectious. The tissue cyst wall surrounding zoites did not autofluoresce as did oocyst and sporocyst walls exposed to UV light. We believe that C. canis can be used as a model system to study extra-intestinal monozoic tissue cysts stages of Cystoisospora belli of humans.

  12. Sarcocystis arieticanis (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) infecting the heart muscles of the domestic sheep, Ovis aries (Artiodactyla: Bovidae), from K. S. A. on the basis of light and electron microscopic data.

    PubMed

    Al Quraishy, Saleh; Morsy, Kareem; Bashtar, Abdel-Rahman; Ghaffar, Fathy Abdel; Mehlhorn, Heinz

    2014-10-01

    In the present study, the heteroxenous life cycle of Sarcocystis species from three strains of the slaughtered sheep at Al-Azizia and Al-Saada abattoirs in Riyadh city, K.S.A., was studied. Muscle samples of the oesophagus, diaphragm, tongue, skeletal and heart muscles were examined. Varied natural infection rates in the muscles of the examined sheep strains were recorded as 83% in Niemy, 81.5% in Najdy and 90% in Sawakny sheep. Muscles of the diaphragm showed the highest infection level above all organs except Najdy sheep in which oesophagus has the highest rate. Also, the heart was the lowest infected organ (40% Niemy, 44% Najdy and 53% Sawakny). Microscopic sarcocysts of Sarcocystis arieticanis are easily identified in sections through the heart muscles of the domestic sheep Ovis aries (Artiodactyla: Bovidae). Cysts measured 38.5-64.4 μm (averaged 42.66 μm) in width and 62.4-173.6 μm (averaged 82.14 μm) in length. The validity of this species was confirmed by means of ultrastructural characteristics of the primary cyst wall (0.1-0.27 μm thick) which revealed the presence of irregularly shaped crowded and hairy-like projections underlined by a thin layer of ground substance. This layer consisted mainly of fine, dense homogenous granules enclosing the developing metrocytes and merozoites that usually contain nearly all the structures of the apical complex and fill the interior cavity of the cyst. Several septa derived from the ground substance divided the cyst into compartments. The merozoites were banana-shaped and measured 12-16 μm in length with centrally or posteriorly located nuclei. Experimental infection of carnivores by feeding heavily infected sheep muscles revealed that the dog, Canis familiaris, is the only final host of the present Sarcocystis species. Gamogony, sporogonic stages and characteristics of sporulated oocysts were also investigated.

  13. Dissecting the interface between apicomplexan parasite and host cell: Insights from a divergent AMARON2 pair

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plasmodium falciparum and Toxoplasma gondii are widely studied parasites in phylum Apicomplexa and the etiological agents of severe human malaria and toxoplasmosis, respectively. These intracellular pathogens have evolved a sophisticated invasion strategy that relies on delivery of proteins into the...

  14. Phylogenetic relationships of Cryptosporidium determined by ribosomal RNA sequence comparison.

    PubMed

    Johnson, A M; Fielke, R; Lumb, R; Baverstock, P R

    1990-04-01

    Reverse transcription of total cellular RNA was used to obtain a partial sequence of the small subunit ribosomal RNA of Cryptosporidium, a protist currently placed in the phylum Apicomplexa. The semi-conserved regions were aligned with homologous sequences in a range of other eukaryotes, and the evolutionary relationships of Cryptosporidium were determined by two different methods of phylogenetic analysis. The prokaryotes Escherichia coli and Halobacterium cuti were included as outgroups. The results do not show an especially close relationship of Cryptosporidium to other members of the phylum Apicomplexa. PMID:2332273

  15. Natural Plasmodium infection in monkeys in the state of Rondônia (Brazilian Western Amazon)

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Simian malaria is still an open question concerning the species of Plasmodium parasites and species of New World monkeys susceptible to the parasites. In addition, the lingering question as to whether these animals are reservoirs for human malaria might become important especially in a scenario of eradication of the disease. To aid in the answers to these questions, monkeys were surveyed for malaria parasite natural infection in the Amazonian state of Rondônia, Brazil, a state with intense environmental alterations due to human activities, which facilitated sampling of the animals. Methods Parasites were detected and identified in DNA from blood of monkeys, by PCR with primers for the 18S rRNA, CSP and MSP1 genes and sequencing of the amplified fragments. Multiplex PCR primers for the 18S rRNA genes were designed for the parasite species Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium vivax, Plasmodium malariae/Plasmodium brasilianum and Plasmodium simium. Results An overall infection rate of 10.9% was observed or 20 out 184 monkey specimens surveyed, mostly by P. brasilianum. However, four specimens of monkeys were found infected with P. falciparum, two of them doubly infected with P. brasilianum and P. falciparum. In addition, a species of monkey of the family Aotidae, Aotus nigriceps, is firstly reported here naturally infected with P. brasilianum. None of the monkeys surveyed was found infected with P. simium/P. vivax. Conclusion The rate of natural Plasmodium infection in monkeys in the Brazilian state of Rondônia is in line with previous surveys of simian malaria in the Amazon region. The fact that a monkey species was found that had not previously been described to harbour malaria parasites indicates that the list of monkey species susceptible to Plasmodium infection is yet to be completed. Furthermore, finding monkeys in the region infected with P. falciparum clearly indicates parasite transfer from humans to the animals. Whether this parasite can be

  16. Screening genus Penicillium for producers of cellulolytic and xylanolytic enzymes.

    PubMed

    Krogh, Kristian B R; Mørkeberg, Astrid; Jørgensen, Henning; Frisvad, Jens C; Olsson, Lisbeth

    2004-01-01

    For enzymatic hydrolysis of lignocellulosic material, cellulolytic enzymes from Trichoderma reesei are most commenly used, but, there is a need for more efficient enzyme cocktails. In this study, the production of cellulolytic and xylanolytic enzymes was investigated in 12 filamentous fungi from genus Penicillium and compared with that of T. reesei. Either Solka-Floc cellulose or oat spelt xylan was used as carbon source in shake flask cultivations. All the fungi investigated showed coinduction of cellulolytic and xylanolytic enzymes during growth on cellulose as well as on xylan. The highest filter paper activity was measured after cultivation of Penicillium brasilianum IBT 20888 on cellulose.

  17. Eugregarines reduce susceptibility of the hide beetle, Dermestes maculatus, to apicomplexan pathogens and retard larval development

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Eugregarines are abundant in a great diversity of invertebrates, and yet their relationships with their hosts are subject to controversy and confusion. We tested the effect of the eugregarine, Pyxinia crystalligera, on growth, development, and susceptibility to two Apicomplexa pathogens of the hide ...

  18. Sarcocystosis of animals and humans

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Species of Sarcocystosis, single-celled protozoan parasites in the Phylum Apicomplexa, are widespread in warm-blooded animals. Completion of the life cycle requires two host species: an intermediate (or prey) host and a definitive (or predator) host. Hosts can harbor more than one species of Sarcocy...

  19. Repertoire of theileria equi antigens bound by equine antibody during persistent phase of infection

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Theileriosis in horses and cattle is caused by tick-borne Apicomplexa parasites that cause death or persist for life in their respective hosts. Due to transmission risk associated with persistence, infection severely limits movement of horses and cattle between countries. The recent reemergence of T...

  20. Population genetics, diversity and spread of virulence in Toxoplasma gondii

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Globally, an estimated third of the human population harbors infection with Toxoplasma gondii, a single-celled eukaryotic parasite belonging to the phylum Apicomplexa (Dubey, 2010). Most infected persons are unaware of, and evidently unharmed by, the parasite cysts established in their muscles and/...

  1. Re-examining alveolate evolution using multiple protein molecular phylogenies.

    PubMed

    Fast, Naomi M; Xue, Lingru; Bingham, Scott; Keeling, Patrick J

    2002-01-01

    Alveolates are a diverse group of protists that includes three major lineages: ciliates, apicomplexa, and dinoflagellates. Among these three, it is thought that the apicomplexa and dinoflagellates are more closely related to one another than to ciliates. However, this conclusion is based almost entirely on results from ribosomal RNA phylogeny because very few morphological characters address this issue and scant molecular data are available from dinoflagellates. To better examine the relationships between the three major alveolate groups, we have sequenced six genes from the non-photosynthetic dinoflagellate, Crypthecodinium cohnii: actin, beta-tubulin, hsp70, BiP, hsp90, and mitochondrial hsp10. Beta-tubulin, hsp70, BiP, and hsp90 were found to be useful for intra-alveolate phylogeny, and trees were inferred from these genes individually and in combination. Trees inferred from individual genes generally supported the apicomplexa-dinoflagellate grouping, as did a combined analysis of all four genes. However, it was also found that the outgroup had a significant effect on the topology within alveolates when using certain methods of phylogenetic reconstruction, and an alternative topology clustering dinoflagellates and ciliates could not be rejected by the combined data. Altogether, these results support the sisterhood of apicomplexa and dinoflagellates, but point out that the relationship is not as strong as is often assumed.

  2. Growth and enzyme production by three Penicillium species on monosaccharides.

    PubMed

    Jørgensen, Henning; Mørkeberg, Astrid; Krogh, Kristian B R; Olsson, Lisbeth

    2004-04-29

    The growth and preference for utilisation of various sugar by the Penicillium species Penicillium pinophilum IBT 4186, Penicillium persicinum IBT 13226 and Penicillium brasilianum IBT 20888 was studied in batch cultivations using various monosaccharides as carbon source, either alone or in mixtures. P. pinophilum IBT 4186 and P. persicinum IBT 13226 had a micro(max) around 0.08-0.09 h(-1) using either glucose or xylose as carbon source. The micro(max) of P. brasilianum IBT 20888 was 0.16 and 0.14 h(-1) on glucose and xylose, respectively. Glucose was found to exert repression on the catabolism of mannose, galactose, xylose and arabinose. The three species were able to utilise all the tested monosaccharides, but arabinose was only slowly metabolised. Glucose was also found to repress the production of endoglucanases, endoxylanases and beta-xylosidases. After glucose depletion, the fungi started producing beta-glucosidase and endoglucanases. Xylose did not repress the enzyme production and it induced the production of endoxylanases and beta-xylosidases.

  3. Sequencing of the smallest Apicomplexan genome from the human pathogen Babesia microti†

    PubMed Central

    Cornillot, Emmanuel; Hadj-Kaddour, Kamel; Dassouli, Amina; Noel, Benjamin; Ranwez, Vincent; Vacherie, Benoît; Augagneur, Yoann; Brès, Virginie; Duclos, Aurelie; Randazzo, Sylvie; Carcy, Bernard; Debierre-Grockiego, Françoise; Delbecq, Stéphane; Moubri-Ménage, Karina; Shams-Eldin, Hosam; Usmani-Brown, Sahar; Bringaud, Frédéric; Wincker, Patrick; Vivarès, Christian P.; Schwarz, Ralph T.; Schetters, Theo P.; Krause, Peter J.; Gorenflot, André; Berry, Vincent; Barbe, Valérie; Ben Mamoun, Choukri

    2012-01-01

    We have sequenced the genome of the emerging human pathogen Babesia microti and compared it with that of other protozoa. B. microti has the smallest nuclear genome among all Apicomplexan parasites sequenced to date with three chromosomes encoding ∼3500 polypeptides, several of which are species specific. Genome-wide phylogenetic analyses indicate that B. microti is significantly distant from all species of Babesidae and Theileridae and defines a new clade in the phylum Apicomplexa. Furthermore, unlike all other Apicomplexa, its mitochondrial genome is circular. Genome-scale reconstruction of functional networks revealed that B. microti has the minimal metabolic requirement for intraerythrocytic protozoan parasitism. B. microti multigene families differ from those of other protozoa in both the copy number and organization. Two lateral transfer events with significant metabolic implications occurred during the evolution of this parasite. The genomic sequencing of B. microti identified several targets suitable for the development of diagnostic assays and novel therapies for human babesiosis. PMID:22833609

  4. To bet or not to bet: deciphering cell to cell variation in protozoan infections.

    PubMed

    Seco-Hidalgo, Víctor; Osuna, Antonio; Pablos, Luis Miguel De

    2015-08-01

    Some of the most crucial phenotypic aspects of parasites, such as an antigen-coated surface, parasite sexual differentiation, virulence, and drug resistance, rely on adaptive plasticity and/or stochastic events. At a population level, cell to cell variability represents an avenue for rapid response to drastic changes in the environment. Single cell approaches can be used to unravel the different strategies used by parasites to survive in the context of regulated transcriptional control (apicomplexa) or in its absence (kinetoplastids).

  5. Use of proteinase K in the excystation of Sarcocystis cruzi sporocysts for in vitro culture and DNA extraction.

    PubMed

    Ndiritu, W; Cawthorn, R J; Kibenge, F S

    1994-03-01

    Proteinase K was used for the cleaning of Sarcocystis cruzi (Apicomplexa) sporocysts prior to excystation. Bovine pulmonary endothelial cell cultures inoculated with the excysted sporozoites remained free of bacterial contamination for the duration of the experiment and had high yields of merozoites. The excysted sporozoites also yielded genomic DNA that could be labelled efficiently with 32P dATP by the random priming method.

  6. Recent advances in understanding apicomplexan parasites

    PubMed Central

    Seeber, Frank; Steinfelder, Svenja

    2016-01-01

    Intracellular single-celled parasites belonging to the large phylum Apicomplexa are amongst the most prevalent and morbidity-causing pathogens worldwide. In this review, we highlight a few of the many recent advances in the field that helped to clarify some important aspects of their fascinating biology and interaction with their hosts. Plasmodium falciparum causes malaria, and thus the recent emergence of resistance against the currently used drug combinations based on artemisinin has been of major interest for the scientific community. It resulted in great advances in understanding the resistance mechanisms that can hopefully be translated into altered future drug regimens. Apicomplexa are also experts in host cell manipulation and immune evasion. Toxoplasma gondii and Theileria sp., besides Plasmodium sp., are species that secrete effector molecules into the host cell to reach this aim. The underlying molecular mechanisms for how these proteins are trafficked to the host cytosol ( T. gondii and Plasmodium) and how a secreted protein can immortalize the host cell ( Theileria sp.) have been illuminated recently. Moreover, how such secreted proteins affect the host innate immune responses against T. gondii and the liver stages of Plasmodium has also been unraveled at the genetic and molecular level, leading to unexpected insights. Methodological advances in metabolomics and molecular biology have been instrumental to solving some fundamental puzzles of mitochondrial carbon metabolism in Apicomplexa. Also, for the first time, the generation of stably transfected Cryptosporidium parasites was achieved, which opens up a wide variety of experimental possibilities for this understudied, important apicomplexan pathogen. PMID:27347391

  7. Full-Malaria/Parasites and Full-Arthropods: databases of full-length cDNAs of parasites and arthropods, update 2009.

    PubMed

    Wakaguri, Hiroyuki; Suzuki, Yutaka; Katayama, Toshiaki; Kawashima, Shuichi; Kibukawa, Eri; Hiranuka, Kazushi; Sasaki, Masahide; Sugano, Sumio; Watanabe, Junichi

    2009-01-01

    Full-Malaria/Parasites is a database for transcriptome studies of apicomplexa and other parasites, which is based on our original full-length cDNA sequences and physical cDNA clone resources. In this update, the database has been expanded to contain the shogun sequencing for the entire sequences of 14,818 non-redundant full-length cDNA clones from six apicomplexa parasites and 6.8 million of transcription start sites (TSS), both of which had been produced by novel protocols using the oligo-capping method and the Illumina GA sequencer. The former should be the ultimate data for exact annotation of the expressed genes, while the latter should be useful for ultra-deep expression analysis. Furthermore, we have launched Full-Arthropods, a full-length cDNA database for arthropods of medical importance. Full-Arthropods contains 50 343 one-pass sequences, 10 399 shotgun complete sequences and 22.4 million TSS tags in anopheles mosquitoes that transmit malaria, tsetse flies that transmit trypanosomiasis and dust mites that cause allergic dermatitis and bronchial asthma. By providing the largest integrated full-length cDNA data resources in the apicomplexa parasites as well as their vectors, Full-Malaria/Parasites and Full-Arthropods should help combat parasitic diseases. Full-Malaria/Parasites and Full-Arthropods are accessible from http://fullmal.hgc.jp/.

  8. Role of ATG3 in the parasite Toxoplasma gondii: autophagy in an early branching eukaryote.

    PubMed

    Besteiro, Sébastien

    2012-03-01

    Toxoplasma gondii belongs to the phylum Apicomplexa, a diverse group of early branching unicellular eukaryotes related to dinoflagellates and ciliates. Like several other Apicomplexa such as Plasmodium (the causative agent of malaria), T. gondii is a human pathogen responsible for a potentially lethal disease called toxoplasmosis. Most Apicomplexa have complex life cycles, involving intermediate hosts and vectors, which include obligatory intracellular developmental stages. In the case of malaria and toxoplasmosis, it is that replicative process, leading to the ultimate lysis of the host cell, which is causing the symptoms of the disease. For Toxoplasma, the invasive and fast-replicating form of the parasite is called the tachyzoite. While autophagy has been a fast-growing field of research in recent years, not much was known about the relevance of this catabolic process in medically important apicomplexan parasites. Vesicles resembling autophagosomes had been described in drug-treated Plasmodium parasites in the early 1970s and a potential role for autophagy in organelle recycling during differentiation between Plasmodium life stages has also been recently described. Interestingly, recent database searches have identified putative orthologs of the core machinery responsible for the formation of autophagosomes in several protists, including Toxoplasma. In spite of an apparently reduced machinery (only about one-third of the yeast ATG genes appear to be conserved), T. gondii seemed thus able to perform macroautophagy, but the cellular functions of the pathway for this parasite remained to be demonstrated.

  9. Alveolins, a new family of cortical proteins that define the protist infrakingdom Alveolata.

    PubMed

    Gould, Sven B; Tham, Wai-Hong; Cowman, Alan F; McFadden, Geoffrey I; Waller, Ross F

    2008-06-01

    Alveolates are a recently recognized group of unicellular eukaryotes that unites disparate protists including apicomplexan parasites (which cause malaria and toxoplasmosis), dinoflagellate algae (which cause red tides and are symbionts in many corals), and ciliates (which are microscopic predators and common rumen symbionts). Gene sequence trees provide robust support for the alveolate alliance, but beyond the common presence of membranous sacs (alveoli) subtending the plasma membrane, the group has no unifying morphological feature. We describe a family of proteins, alveolins, associated with these membranous sacs in apicomplexa, dinoflagellates, and ciliates. Alveolins contain numerous simple peptide repeats and are encoded by multigene families. We generated antibodies against a peptide motif common to all alveolins and identified a range of apparently abundant proteins in apicomplexa, dinoflagellates, and ciliates. Immunolocalization reveals that alveolins are associated exclusively with the cortical regions of apicomplexa, dinoflagellates, and ciliates where the alveolar sacs occur. Alveolins are the first molecular nexus between the unifying structures that defines this eukaryotic group. They provide an excellent opportunity to explore the exceptional compartment that was apparently the key to a remarkable diversification of unique protists that occupy a wide array of lifestyle niches.

  10. In silico analysis of the cyclophilin repertoire of apicomplexan parasites

    PubMed Central

    Krücken, Jürgen; Greif, Gisela; von Samson-Himmelstjerna, Georg

    2009-01-01

    Background Cyclophilins (Cyps) are peptidyl cis/trans isomerases implicated in diverse processes such as protein folding, signal transduction, and RNA processing. They are also candidate drug targets, in particular for the immunosuppressant cyclosporine A. In addition, cyclosporine is known to exhibit anti-parasitic effects on a wide range of organisms including several apicomplexa. In order to obtain new non-immunosuppressive drugs targeting apicomplexan cyclophilins, a profound knowledge of the cyclophilin repertoire of this phylum would be necessary. Results BLAST and maximum likelihood analyses identified 16 different cyclophilin subfamilies within the genomes of Cryptosporidium hominis, Toxoplasma gondii, Plasmodium falciparum, Theileria annulata, Theileria parva, and Babesia bovis. In addition to good statistical support from the phylogenetic analysis, these subfamilies are also confirmed by comparison of cyclophilin domain architecture. Within an individual genome, the number of different Cyp genes that could be deduced varies between 7–9 for Cryptosporidia and 14 for T. gondii. Many of the putative apicomplexan cyclophilins are predicted to be nuclear proteins, most of them presumably involved in RNA processing. Conclusion The genomes of apicomplexa harbor a cyclophilin repertoire that is at least as complex as that of most fungi. The identification of Cyp subfamilies that are specific for lower eukaryotes, apicomplexa, or even the genus Plasmodium is of particular interest since these subfamilies are not present in host cells and might therefore represent attractive drug targets. PMID:19555495

  11. Recent advances in understanding apicomplexan parasites.

    PubMed

    Seeber, Frank; Steinfelder, Svenja

    2016-01-01

    Intracellular single-celled parasites belonging to the large phylum Apicomplexa are amongst the most prevalent and morbidity-causing pathogens worldwide. In this review, we highlight a few of the many recent advances in the field that helped to clarify some important aspects of their fascinating biology and interaction with their hosts. Plasmodium falciparum causes malaria, and thus the recent emergence of resistance against the currently used drug combinations based on artemisinin has been of major interest for the scientific community. It resulted in great advances in understanding the resistance mechanisms that can hopefully be translated into altered future drug regimens. Apicomplexa are also experts in host cell manipulation and immune evasion. Toxoplasma gondii and Theileria sp., besides Plasmodium sp., are species that secrete effector molecules into the host cell to reach this aim. The underlying molecular mechanisms for how these proteins are trafficked to the host cytosol ( T. gondii and Plasmodium) and how a secreted protein can immortalize the host cell ( Theileria sp.) have been illuminated recently. Moreover, how such secreted proteins affect the host innate immune responses against T. gondii and the liver stages of Plasmodium has also been unraveled at the genetic and molecular level, leading to unexpected insights. Methodological advances in metabolomics and molecular biology have been instrumental to solving some fundamental puzzles of mitochondrial carbon metabolism in Apicomplexa. Also, for the first time, the generation of stably transfected Cryptosporidium parasites was achieved, which opens up a wide variety of experimental possibilities for this understudied, important apicomplexan pathogen. PMID:27347391

  12. Combined Amplicon Pyrosequencing Assays Reveal Presence of the Apicomplexan “type-N” (cf. Gemmocystis cylindrus) and Chromera velia on the Great Barrier Reef, Australia

    PubMed Central

    Šlapeta, Jan; Linares, Marjorie C.

    2013-01-01

    Background The coral is predominantly composed of the metabolically dependent coral host and the photosynthetic dinoflagellate Symbiodinium sp. The system as a whole interacts with symbiotic eukaryotes, bacteria and viruses. Gemmocystiscylindrus (cf. “type-N” symbiont) belonging to the obligatory parasitic phylum Apicomplexa (Alveolata) is ubiquitous in the Caribbean coral, but its presence in the Great Barrier Reef coral has yet to be documented. Approaches allowing identification of the healthy community from the pathogenic or saprobic organisms are needed for sustainable coral reef monitoring. Methods & Principal Findings We investigated the diversity of eukaryotes associated with a common reef-building corals from the southern Great Barrier Reef. We used three tag encoded 454 amplicon pyrosequencing assays targeting eukaryote small-subunit rRNA gene to demonstrate the presence of the apicomplexan type-N and a photosynthetic sister species to Apicomplexa - Chromeravelia. Amplicon pyrosequencing revealed presence of the small-subunit rRNA genes of known eukaryotic pathogens (Cryptosporidium and Cryptococcus). We therefore conducted bacterial tag encoded amplicon pyrosequencing assay for small-subunit rRNA gene to support effluent exposure of the coral. Bacteria of faecal origin (Enterobacteriales) formed 41% of total sequences in contrast to 0-2% of the coral-associated bacterial communities with and without C. velia, respectively. Significance This is the first time apicomplexan type-N has been detected in the Great Barrier Reef. Eukaryote tag encoded amplicon pyrosequencing assays demonstrate presence of apicomplexan type-N and C. Velia in total coral DNA. The data highlight the need for combined approaches for eukaryotic diversity studies coupled with bacterial community assessment to achieve a more realistic goals of defining the holobiont community and assessing coral disease. With increasing evidence of Apicomplexa in coral reef environments, it is

  13. The Conoid Associated Motor MyoH Is Indispensable for Toxoplasma gondii Entry and Exit from Host Cells.

    PubMed

    Graindorge, Arnault; Frénal, Karine; Jacot, Damien; Salamun, Julien; Marq, Jean Baptiste; Soldati-Favre, Dominique

    2016-01-01

    Many members of the phylum of Apicomplexa have adopted an obligate intracellular life style and critically depend on active invasion and egress from the infected cells to complete their lytic cycle. Toxoplasma gondii belongs to the coccidian subgroup of the Apicomplexa, and as such, the invasive tachyzoite contains an organelle termed the conoid at its extreme apex. This motile organelle consists of a unique polymer of tubulin fibres and protrudes in both gliding and invading parasites. The class XIV myosin A, which is conserved across the Apicomplexa phylum, is known to critically contribute to motility, invasion and egress from infected cells. The MyoA-glideosome is anchored to the inner membrane complex (IMC) and is assumed to translocate the components of the circular junction secreted by the micronemes and rhoptries, to the rear of the parasite. Here we comprehensively characterise the class XIV myosin H (MyoH) and its associated light chains. We show that the 3 alpha-tubulin suppressor domains, located in MyoH tail, are necessary to anchor this motor to the conoid. Despite the presence of an intact MyoA-glideosome, conditional disruption of TgMyoH severely compromises parasite motility, invasion and egress from infected cells. We demonstrate that MyoH is necessary for the translocation of the circular junction from the tip of the parasite, where secretory organelles exocytosis occurs, to the apical position where the IMC starts. This study attributes for the first time a direct function of the conoid in motility and invasion, and establishes the indispensable role of MyoH in initiating the first step of motility along this unique organelle, which is subsequently relayed by MyoA to enact effective gliding and invasion. PMID:26760042

  14. The Conoid Associated Motor MyoH Is Indispensable for Toxoplasma gondii Entry and Exit from Host Cells

    PubMed Central

    Graindorge, Arnault; Salamun, Julien; Marq, Jean Baptiste; Soldati-Favre, Dominique

    2016-01-01

    Many members of the phylum of Apicomplexa have adopted an obligate intracellular life style and critically depend on active invasion and egress from the infected cells to complete their lytic cycle. Toxoplasma gondii belongs to the coccidian subgroup of the Apicomplexa, and as such, the invasive tachyzoite contains an organelle termed the conoid at its extreme apex. This motile organelle consists of a unique polymer of tubulin fibres and protrudes in both gliding and invading parasites. The class XIV myosin A, which is conserved across the Apicomplexa phylum, is known to critically contribute to motility, invasion and egress from infected cells. The MyoA-glideosome is anchored to the inner membrane complex (IMC) and is assumed to translocate the components of the circular junction secreted by the micronemes and rhoptries, to the rear of the parasite. Here we comprehensively characterise the class XIV myosin H (MyoH) and its associated light chains. We show that the 3 alpha-tubulin suppressor domains, located in MyoH tail, are necessary to anchor this motor to the conoid. Despite the presence of an intact MyoA-glideosome, conditional disruption of TgMyoH severely compromises parasite motility, invasion and egress from infected cells. We demonstrate that MyoH is necessary for the translocation of the circular junction from the tip of the parasite, where secretory organelles exocytosis occurs, to the apical position where the IMC starts. This study attributes for the first time a direct function of the conoid in motility and invasion, and establishes the indispensable role of MyoH in initiating the first step of motility along this unique organelle, which is subsequently relayed by MyoA to enact effective gliding and invasion. PMID:26760042

  15. The Conoid Associated Motor MyoH Is Indispensable for Toxoplasma gondii Entry and Exit from Host Cells.

    PubMed

    Graindorge, Arnault; Frénal, Karine; Jacot, Damien; Salamun, Julien; Marq, Jean Baptiste; Soldati-Favre, Dominique

    2016-01-01

    Many members of the phylum of Apicomplexa have adopted an obligate intracellular life style and critically depend on active invasion and egress from the infected cells to complete their lytic cycle. Toxoplasma gondii belongs to the coccidian subgroup of the Apicomplexa, and as such, the invasive tachyzoite contains an organelle termed the conoid at its extreme apex. This motile organelle consists of a unique polymer of tubulin fibres and protrudes in both gliding and invading parasites. The class XIV myosin A, which is conserved across the Apicomplexa phylum, is known to critically contribute to motility, invasion and egress from infected cells. The MyoA-glideosome is anchored to the inner membrane complex (IMC) and is assumed to translocate the components of the circular junction secreted by the micronemes and rhoptries, to the rear of the parasite. Here we comprehensively characterise the class XIV myosin H (MyoH) and its associated light chains. We show that the 3 alpha-tubulin suppressor domains, located in MyoH tail, are necessary to anchor this motor to the conoid. Despite the presence of an intact MyoA-glideosome, conditional disruption of TgMyoH severely compromises parasite motility, invasion and egress from infected cells. We demonstrate that MyoH is necessary for the translocation of the circular junction from the tip of the parasite, where secretory organelles exocytosis occurs, to the apical position where the IMC starts. This study attributes for the first time a direct function of the conoid in motility and invasion, and establishes the indispensable role of MyoH in initiating the first step of motility along this unique organelle, which is subsequently relayed by MyoA to enact effective gliding and invasion.

  16. Parasitism by a protozoan in the hemolymph of the giant clam, Tridacna crocea.

    PubMed

    Nakayama, K; Nishijima, M; Maruyama, T

    1998-05-01

    A parasitism by a protozoan was found in the giant clam, Tridacna crocea. The parasites were spindle-shaped, 8.6 +/- 0.5 micro m in length and 2.5 +/- 0.3 micro m in width. Structural features of the apical complex of the parasite and a molecular phylogenetic analysis of its 18S rRNA gene sequence indicate that the protozoan belongs to the Apicomplexa. No flagellum was observed in the parasitic protozoan. It infected the eosinophilic granular hemocyte, one of the three types of hemocytes in the clam hemolymph, but it is not known whether it influenced the growth of the clam.

  17. Apicomplexan parasites: environmental contamination and transmission.

    PubMed

    Siński, Edward; Behnke, Jerzy M

    2004-01-01

    The Apicomplexa are a diverse group of intracellular parasitic protists. The majority of species from the classes Coccidea, Haemosporea and Piroplasmea are responsible for widespread diseases of humans and domestic animals. Oocysts of these parasites can persist for long periods of time in the environment (i.e. in water, soil, on vegetation and other food resources), maintaining their infectivity even under harsh environmental conditions and therefore are important for dispersal and transmission to hosts. This review will address the biology, transmission patterns and survival in the environment of Cryptosporidium, Cyclospora and Toxoplasma species, the most common causes of human diseases.

  18. Replication and maintenance of the Plasmodium falciparum apicoplast genome.

    PubMed

    Milton, Morgan E; Nelson, Scott W

    2016-08-01

    Members of the phylum Apicomplexa are responsible for many devastating diseases including malaria (Plasmodium spp.), toxoplasmosis (Toxoplasma gondii), babesiosis (Babesia bovis), and cyclosporiasis (Cyclospora cayetanensis). Most Apicomplexans contain a unique and essential organelle called the apicoplast. Derived from an ancient chloroplast, the apicoplast replicates and maintains a 35 kilobase (kb) circular genome. Due to its essential nature within the parasite, drugs targeted to proteins involved in DNA replication and repair of the apicoplast should be potent and specific. This review summarizes the current knowledge surrounding the replication and repair of the Plasmodium falciparum apicoplast genome and identifies several putative proteins involved in replication and repair pathways. PMID:27338018

  19. Jumbled genomes: missing Apicomplexan synteny.

    PubMed

    DeBarry, Jeremy D; Kissinger, Jessica C

    2011-10-01

    Whole-genome comparisons provide insight into genome evolution by informing on gene repertoires, gene gains/losses, and genome organization. Most of our knowledge about eukaryotic genome evolution is derived from studies of multicellular model organisms. The eukaryotic phylum Apicomplexa contains obligate intracellular protist parasites responsible for a wide range of human and veterinary diseases (e.g., malaria, toxoplasmosis, and theileriosis). We have developed an in silico protein-encoding gene based pipeline to investigate synteny across 12 apicomplexan species from six genera. Genome rearrangement between lineages is extensive. Syntenic regions (conserved gene content and order) are rare between lineages and appear to be totally absent across the phylum, with no group of three genes found on the same chromosome and in the same order within 25 kb up- and downstream of any orthologous genes. Conserved synteny between major lineages is limited to small regions in Plasmodium and Theileria/Babesia species, and within these conserved regions, there are a number of proteins putatively targeted to organelles. The observed overall lack of synteny is surprising considering the divergence times and the apparent absence of transposable elements (TEs) within any of the species examined. TEs are ubiquitous in all other groups of eukaryotes studied to date and have been shown to be involved in genomic rearrangements. It appears that there are different criteria governing genome evolution within the Apicomplexa relative to other well-studied unicellular and multicellular eukaryotes. PMID:21504890

  20. Is there a plastid in Perkinsus atlanticus (Phylum Perkinsozoa)?

    PubMed

    Teles-Grilo, M Leonor; Tato-Costa, Joana; Duarte, Sérgio M; Maia, Alexandre; Casal, Graça; Azevedo, Carlos

    2007-06-01

    Perkinsus atlanticus is a pathogenic protist that infects the clam Ruditapes decussatus. The recent proposal for the inclusion of the genus Perkinsus in a new phylum, Perkinsozoa, in the infra-kingdom Alveolata, gave rise to controversies whether this genus should form a phylum on its own. Molecular analysis of some conserved nuclear genes shows a closer proximity of the genus Perkinsus to the dinoflagellates than to the apicomplexans. Studies on extranuclear genomes, however, could also be very helpful for a more precise definition of those phyla. In Perkinsozoa, there have been until now no reports about the isolation of mitochondria as well as no conclusive results about the presence of any plastids, therefore a comparison with the data already obtained in Apicomplexa and Dinoflagellata has not yet been possible. In this work, we identify a plastid in Perkinsus atlanticus, using ultrastructural techniques and inhibition growth tests. It will be important to analyze the plastid genome at a molecular level, in order to confirm if the plastid in Perkinsus is more similar to those of Dinoflagellata or Apicomplexa. Such information will doubtless contribute to a more precise determination of the phylogenetic position of the genus Perkinsus. PMID:17498932

  1. Structures of parasitic CDPK domains point to a common mechanism of activation

    SciTech Connect

    Wernimont, Amy K.; Amani, Merhnaz; Qiu, Wei; Pizarro, Juan C.; Artz, Jennifer D.; Lin, Yu-Hui; Lew, Jocelyn; Hutchinson, Ashley; Hui, Raymond

    2011-11-23

    We recently determined the first structures of inactivated and calcium-activated calcium-dependent protein kinases (CDPKs) from Apicomplexa. Calcium binding triggered a large conformational change that constituted a new mechanism in calcium signaling and a novel EF-hand fold (CAD, for CDPK activation domain). Thus we set out to determine if this mechanism was universal to all CDPKs. We solved additional CDPK structures, including one from the species Plasmodium. We highlight the similarities in sequence and structure across apicomplexan and plant CDPKs, and strengthen our observations that this novel mechanism could be universal to canonical CDPKs. Our new structures demonstrate more detailed steps in the mechanism of calcium activation and possible key players in regulation. Residues involved in making the largest conformational change are the most conserved across Apicomplexa, leading us to propose that the mechanism is indeed conserved. CpCDPK3{_}CAD and PfCDPK{_}CAD were captured at a possible intermediate conformation, lending insight into the order of activation steps. PfCDPK3{_}CAD adopts an activated fold, despite having an inactive EF-hand sequence in the N-terminal lobe. We propose that for most apicomplexan CDPKs, the mode of activation will be similar to that seen in our structures, while specific regulation of the inactive and active forms will require further investigation.

  2. The Organellar Genomes of Chromera and Vitrella, the Phototrophic Relatives of Apicomplexan Parasites.

    PubMed

    Oborník, Miroslav; Lukeš, Julius

    2015-01-01

    Apicomplexa are known to contain greatly reduced organellar genomes. Their mitochondrial genome carries only three protein-coding genes, and their plastid genome is reduced to a 35-kb-long circle. The discovery of coral-endosymbiotic algae Chromera velia and Vitrella brassicaformis, which share a common ancestry with Apicomplexa, provided an opportunity to study possibly ancestral forms of organellar genomes, a unique glimpse into the evolutionary history of apicomplexan parasites. The structurally similar mitochondrial genomes of Chromera and Vitrella differ in gene content, which is reflected in the composition of their respiratory chains. Thus, Chromera lacks respiratory complexes I and III, whereas Vitrella and apicomplexan parasites are missing only complex I. Plastid genomes differ substantially between these algae, particularly in structure: The Chromera plastid genome is a linear, 120-kb molecule with large and divergent genes, whereas the plastid genome of Vitrella is a highly compact circle that is only 85 kb long but nonetheless contains more genes than that of Chromera. It appears that organellar genomes have already been reduced in free-living phototrophic ancestors of apicomplexan parasites, and such reduction is not associated with parasitism. PMID:26092225

  3. Elongator Protein 3 (Elp3) Lysine Acetyltransferase Is a Tail-anchored Mitochondrial Protein in Toxoplasma gondii *

    PubMed Central

    Stilger, Krista L.; Sullivan, William J.

    2013-01-01

    Lysine acetylation has recently emerged as an important, widespread post-translational modification occurring on proteins that reside in multiple cellular compartments, including the mitochondria. However, no lysine acetyltransferase (KAT) has been definitively localized to this organelle to date. Here we describe the identification of an unusual homologue of Elp3 in early-branching protozoa in the phylum Apicomplexa. Elp3 is the catalytic subunit of the well-conserved transcription Elongator complex; however, Apicomplexa lack all other Elongator subunits, suggesting that the Elp3 in these organisms plays a role independent of transcription. Surprisingly, Elp3 in the parasites of this phylum, including Toxoplasma gondii (TgElp3), possesses a unique C-terminal transmembrane domain (TMD) that localizes the protein to the mitochondrion. As TgElp3 is devoid of known mitochondrial targeting signals, we used selective permeabilization studies to reveal that this KAT is oriented with its catalytic components facing the cytosol and its C-terminal TMD inserted into the outer mitochondrial membrane, consistent with a tail-anchored membrane protein. Elp3 trafficking to mitochondria is not exclusive to Toxoplasma as we also present evidence that a form of Elp3 localizes to these organelles in mammalian cells, supporting the idea that Elp3 performs novel functions across eukaryotes that are independent of transcriptional elongation. Importantly, we also present genetic studies that suggest TgElp3 is essential in Toxoplasma and must be positioned at the mitochondrial surface for parasite viability. PMID:23878194

  4. Epigenomic Modifications Predict Active Promoters and Gene Structure in Toxoplasma gondii

    PubMed Central

    Gissot, Mathieu; Kelly, Krystyna A; Ajioka, James W; Greally, John M; Kim, Kami

    2007-01-01

    Mechanisms of gene regulation are poorly understood in Apicomplexa, a phylum that encompasses deadly human pathogens like Plasmodium and Toxoplasma. Initial studies suggest that epigenetic phenomena, including histone modifications and chromatin remodeling, have a profound effect upon gene expression and expression of virulence traits. Using the model organism Toxoplasma gondii, we characterized the epigenetic organization and transcription patterns of a contiguous 1% of the T. gondii genome using custom oligonucleotide microarrays. We show that methylation and acetylation of histones H3 and H4 are landmarks of active promoters in T. gondii that allow us to deduce the position and directionality of gene promoters with >95% accuracy. These histone methylation and acetylation “activation” marks are strongly associated with gene expression. We also demonstrate that the pattern of histone H3 arginine methylation distinguishes certain promoters, illustrating the complexity of the histone modification machinery in Toxoplasma. By integrating epigenetic data, gene prediction analysis, and gene expression data from the tachyzoite stage, we illustrate feasibility of creating an epigenomic map of T. gondii tachyzoite gene expression. Further, we illustrate the utility of the epigenomic map to empirically and biologically annotate the genome and show that this approach enables identification of previously unknown genes. Thus, our epigenomics approach provides novel insights into regulation of gene expression in the Apicomplexa. In addition, with its compact genome, genetic tractability, and discrete life cycle stages, T. gondii provides an important new model to study the evolutionarily conserved components of the histone code. PMID:17559302

  5. The apicomplexan inner membrane complex.

    PubMed

    Kono, Maya; Prusty, Dhaneswar; Parkinson, John; Gilberger, Tim W

    2013-06-01

    Dinoflagellates, apicomplexans and ciliates are members of the monophyletic supergroup of Alveolata. The protists of this phylogenetic cluster have adapted to various ecological niches and lifestyles. Dinoflagellates and cilates can be found in any aquatic environment, whereas the phylum Apicomplexa solely comprises intracellular parasites. Despite their diversity all alveolates are united by the presence of membranous vesicles, so called alveoli, located beneath the plasma membrane. In addition to strengthening the cytoskeleton, these vesicles appear to possess taxon-specific functionality. In dinoflagellates and ciliates the alveoli predominantly play a structural role and can function as calcium stores. However, for the Apicomplexa, the alveolar vesicles -here jointly called the inner membrane complex (IMC)- are additionally involved in invasion of the host cell and are important scaffold elements during cytokinesis. Recent studies shed light on the architecture of the apicomplexan IMC and the number and diversity of its constituent proteins. This plethora of proteins and their varying evolutionary origin underlines the versatility of the IMC as a result of the adaption to a parasitic lifestyle.

  6. A novel family of Apicomplexan glideosome-associated proteins with an inner membrane-anchoring role.

    PubMed

    Bullen, Hayley E; Tonkin, Christopher J; O'Donnell, Rebecca A; Tham, Wai-Hong; Papenfuss, Anthony T; Gould, Sven; Cowman, Alan F; Crabb, Brendan S; Gilson, Paul R

    2009-09-11

    The phylum Apicomplexa are a group of obligate intracellular parasites responsible for a wide range of important diseases. Central to the lifecycle of these unicellular parasites is their ability to migrate through animal tissue and invade target host cells. Apicomplexan movement is generated by a unique system of gliding motility in which substrate adhesins and invasion-related proteins are pulled across the plasma membrane by an underlying actin-myosin motor. The myosins of this motor are inserted into a dual membrane layer called the inner membrane complex (IMC) that is sandwiched between the plasma membrane and an underlying cytoskeletal basket. Central to our understanding of gliding motility is the characterization of proteins residing within the IMC, but to date only a few proteins are known. We report here a novel family of six-pass transmembrane proteins, termed the GAPM family, which are highly conserved and specific to Apicomplexa. In Plasmodium falciparum and Toxoplasma gondii the GAPMs localize to the IMC where they form highly SDS-resistant oligomeric complexes. The GAPMs co-purify with the cytoskeletal alveolin proteins and also to some degree with the actin-myosin motor itself. Hence, these proteins are strong candidates for an IMC-anchoring role, either directly or indirectly tethering the motor to the cytoskeleton.

  7. Habitat selection by owls in a seasonal semi-deciduous forest in southern Brazil.

    PubMed

    Menq, W; Anjos, L

    2015-11-01

    This paper tested the hypothesis that the structural components of vegetation have impact over the distribution of owl species in a fragment of a semi-deciduous seasonal forest. This paper also determined which vegetation variables contributed to the spatial distribution of owl species. It was developed in the Perobas Biological Reserve (PBR) between September and December 2011. To conduct the owl census, a playback technique was applied at hearing points distributed to cover different vegetation types in the study area. A total of 56 individual owls of six species were recorded: Tropical Screech-Owl (Megascops choliba), Black-capped Screech-Owl (Megascops atricapilla), Tawny-browed Owl (Pulsatrix koeniswaldiana), Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl (Glaucidium brasilianum), Mottled Owl (Strix virgata) and Stygian Owl (Asio stygius). The results suggest that the variables of vegetation structure have impact on the occurrence of owls. The canopy height, the presence of hollow trees, fallen trees and glades are the most important structural components influencing owl distribution in the sampled area. PMID:26602354

  8. Prevalence of antibodies to the repeat epitope of the circumsporozoite protein of Plasmodium vivax in San Luis Potosi, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Mota, J; Coreño, O; Cochrane, A H; Ramos, C

    1996-01-01

    The prevalence of antibodies against the repeat epitope of the circumsporozoite protein (cs) of the standard (PV210) and variant (PVK247) strain of Plasmodium vivax was determined by ELISA in 1170 sera from individual residents of seven localities of the Region Huasteca of San Luis Potosi, Mexico. The capture antigens were the synthetic peptides DDAAD and (ANGAGNQPG) that correspond to the repeats of the PV210 and PVK247 cs proteins, respectively. Of the analyzed serum samples, 34.1% (400/1170) were positive with one or both of these antigens. Of the sera, 18.2% (214/1170) reacted with the DDAAD peptide and 6.6% (78/1170) were positive with the variant synthetic peptide. Additionally, 9.2% (108/1170) of the samples reacted with both peptides. A sample of 10% of positive sera for the variant cs repeat (18/78) was tested with the cs repeat peptide of P. malariae/P. brasilianum (NAAG); almost all of them (16/18, 89%) being positive. These results confirm that the transmission of the variant strain of P. vivax is a common phenomenon in endemic regions in Latin America, as well as in other tropical regions of the world. These findings may have implications for the development of aP. vivax vaccine since that based on the standard cs repeat only would not be universally protective.

  9. Habitat selection by owls in a seasonal semi-deciduous forest in southern Brazil.

    PubMed

    Menq, W; Anjos, L

    2015-11-01

    This paper tested the hypothesis that the structural components of vegetation have impact over the distribution of owl species in a fragment of a semi-deciduous seasonal forest. This paper also determined which vegetation variables contributed to the spatial distribution of owl species. It was developed in the Perobas Biological Reserve (PBR) between September and December 2011. To conduct the owl census, a playback technique was applied at hearing points distributed to cover different vegetation types in the study area. A total of 56 individual owls of six species were recorded: Tropical Screech-Owl (Megascops choliba), Black-capped Screech-Owl (Megascops atricapilla), Tawny-browed Owl (Pulsatrix koeniswaldiana), Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl (Glaucidium brasilianum), Mottled Owl (Strix virgata) and Stygian Owl (Asio stygius). The results suggest that the variables of vegetation structure have impact on the occurrence of owls. The canopy height, the presence of hollow trees, fallen trees and glades are the most important structural components influencing owl distribution in the sampled area.

  10. Cryptic organelles in parasitic protists and fungi.

    PubMed

    Williams, Bryony A P; Keeling, Patrick J

    2003-01-01

    helicosporidian parasites are really highly adapted green alga, but the most spectacular case is the discovery of a plastid in the Apicomplexa. Apicomplexa are very well-studied parasites that include the malaria parasite, Plasmodium, so the discovery of a cryptic plastid in Apicomplexa came as quite a surprise. The apicomplexan plastid is now very well characterised and has been shown to function in the biosynthesis of fatty acids, isopentenyl diphosphate and heme, activities also found in photosynthetic plastids.

  11. The apicoplast: a review of the derived plastid of apicomplexan parasites.

    PubMed

    Waller, Ross F; McFadden, Geoffrey I

    2005-01-01

    The apicoplast is a plastid organelle, homologous to chloroplasts of plants, that is found in apicomplexan parasites such as the causative agents of Malaria Plasmodium spp. It occurs throughout the Apicomplexa and is an ancient feature of this group acquired by the process of endosymbiosis. Like plant chloroplasts, apicoplasts are semi-autonomous with their own genome and expression machinery. In addition, apicoplasts import numerous proteins encoded by nuclear genes. These nuclear genes largely derive from the endosymbiont through a process of intracellular gene relocation. The exact role of a plastid in parasites is uncertain but early clues indicate synthesis of lipids, heme and isoprenoids as possibilities. The various metabolic processes of the apicoplast are potentially excellent targets for drug therapy. PMID:15580780

  12. The methylerythritol phosphate pathway for isoprenoid biosynthesis in coccidia: presence and sensitivity to fosmidomycin.

    PubMed

    Clastre, Marc; Goubard, Armelle; Prel, Anne; Mincheva, Zoia; Viaud-Massuart, Marie-Claude; Bout, Daniel; Rideau, Marc; Velge-Roussel, Florence; Laurent, Fabrice

    2007-08-01

    The apicoplast is a recently discovered, plastid-like organelle present in most apicomplexa. The methylerythritol phosphate (MEP) pathway involved in isoprenoid biosynthesis is one of the metabolic pathways associated with the apicoplast, and is a new promising therapeutic target in Plasmodium falciparum. Here, we check the presence of isoprenoid genes in four coccidian parasites according to genome database searches. Cryptosporidium parvum and C. hominis, which have no plastid genome, lack the MEP pathway. In contrast, gene expression studies suggest that this metabolic pathway is present in several development stages of Eimeria tenella and in tachyzoites of Toxoplasma gondii. We studied the potential of fosmidomycin, an antimalarial drug blocking the MEP pathway, to inhibit E. tenella and T. gondii growth in vitro. The drug was poorly effective even at high concentrations. Thus, both fosmidomycin sensitivity and isoprenoid metabolism differs substantially between apicomplexan species.

  13. Molecular identification of Sarcocystis hominis in native cattle of central Iran: a case report.

    PubMed

    Hajimohammadi, B; Eslami, G; Oryan, A; Zohourtabar, A; Pourmirzaei Tafti, H; Moghaddam Ahmadi, M

    2014-03-01

    Sarcocystis spp. are two-host protozoan parasites belonging to the phylum Apicomplexa. Among different known species of Sarcocystis in cattle, only Sarcocystis hominis is important from the public health viewpoint, because of its zoonotic characteristics. This study presents the first molecular identification of S. hominis in native cattle in central Iran. A sample of diaphragm muscle from a 6-year-old native cow slaughtered at Yazd Slaughterhouse, Yazd, central Iran, was collected in May 2013. DNA extraction was performed, using the salting-out method. DNA purification and precipitation were performed consecutively. The amplicon and digestion results were analyzed using agarose gel electrophoresis. A PCR product with 926 bp in length was obtained after amplification, and 376 bp and 550 bp in length after digestion that identified S. hominis. To the best of our knowledge, this study is the first of its kind to be reported from Iran. PMID:24862059

  14. Molecular phylogeny of Besnoitia and the genetic relationships among Besnoitia of cattle, wildebeest and goats.

    PubMed

    Ellis, J T; Holmdahl, O J; Ryce, C; Njenga, J M; Harper, P A; Morrison, D A

    2000-12-01

    Knowledge on parasites of the genus Besnoitia is sparse, which are classified in the subfamily Toxoplasmatinae of the phylum Apicomplexa. This arrangement hypotheses that Besnoitia represents the sister group to species such as Toxoplasma gondii and Hammondia hammondi. In order to test this hypothesis, phylogenetic analyses of 18S ribosomal DNA (rDNA) from Besnoitia, Hammondia, Isospora, Frenkelia, Eimeria, Neospora, Sarcocystis and Toxoplasma were performed. The 18S rDNA of Besnoitia besnoiti, Besnoitia jellisoni and Eimeria alabamensis were amplified by PCR and sequenced. Phylogenetic analyses by parsimony and maximum-likelihood methods showed Besnoitia to be reproducibly the sister group to a clade containing Hammondia, Neospora and Toxoplasma. Furthermore, Besnoitia of cattle, wildebeest and goats had identical ITS1 rDNA sequences, which questions the use of the taxon Besnoitia caprae to describe the Besnoitia found in goats. PMID:11212893

  15. Morphology, ultrastructure and life cycle of Vitrella brassicaformis n. sp., n. gen., a novel chromerid from the Great Barrier Reef.

    PubMed

    Oborník, Miroslav; Modrý, David; Lukeš, Martin; Cernotíková-Stříbrná, Eva; Cihlář, Jaromír; Tesařová, Martina; Kotabová, Eva; Vancová, Marie; Prášil, Ondřej; Lukeš, Julius

    2012-03-01

    Chromerida are photoautotrophic alveolates so far only isolated from corals in Australia. It has been shown that these secondary plastid-containing algae are closely related to apicomplexan parasites and share various morphological and molecular characters with both Apicomplexa and Dinophyta. So far, the only known representative of the phylum was Chromera velia. Here we provide a formal description of another chromerid, Vitrella brassicaformis gen. et sp. nov., complemented with a detailed study on its ultrastructure, allowing insight into its life cycle. The novel alga differs significantly from the related chromerid C. velia in life cycle, morphology as well as the plastid genome. Analysis of photosynthetic pigments on the other hand demonstrate that both chromerids lack chlorophyll c, the hallmark of phototrophic chromalveolates. Based on the relatively high divergence between C. velia and V. brassicaformis, we propose their classification into distinct families Chromeraceae and Vitrellaceae. Moreover, we predict a hidden and unexplored diversity of the chromerid algae. PMID:22055836

  16. The algal past and parasite present of the apicoplast.

    PubMed

    van Dooren, Giel G; Striepen, Boris

    2013-01-01

    Plasmodium and Toxoplasma are genera of apicomplexan parasites that infect millions of people each year. The former causes malaria, and the latter causes neurotropic infections associated with a weakened or developing immune system. These parasites harbor a peculiar organelle, the apicoplast. The apicoplast is the product of an ancient endosymbiosis between a heterotrophic and a photosynthetic protist. We explore the cellular and molecular mechanisms that enabled a stable union of two previously independent organisms. These include the exchange of metabolites, transfer of genes, transport of proteins, and overall coordination of biogenesis and proliferation. These mechanisms are still active today and can be exploited to treat parasite infection. They were shaped by the dramatic changes that occurred in the evolution of the phylum Apicomplexa--including the gain and loss of photosynthesis, adaptation to symbiosis and parasitism, and the explosion of animal diversity-that ultimately provided an aquatic alga access to every biotope on this planet. PMID:23808340

  17. Evidence for the expression of actomyosin in the infective stage of the sporozoan protist Eimeria.

    PubMed

    Preston, T M; King, C A

    1992-04-01

    A high-speed supernatant extract was obtained from infective oocysts of Eimeria tenella homogenised in a sucrose-low ionic strength buffer. Immunoblotting showed this soluble, micropore-filtered preparation (designated E1) to be rich in actin. E1 underwent superprecipitation on addition of ATP but not its non-hydrolysable analogue AMP.PMP--behaviour typical of an actomyosin solution. The superprecipitate fluoresced strongly in the presence of rhodamine-phalloidin (indicative of the presence of F-actin) and electron microscopy of negatively-stained preparations of this flocculent matter confirmed the abundance of filamentous material within it. This is the first demonstration of a functional actomyosin isolated from a member of the economically important phylum Apicomplexa. PMID:1525837

  18. Parasites of the hard clam Meretrix meretrix Linnaeus from Western Johor Straits, Malaysian

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Azmi, Nur Fauzana; Ghaffar, Mazlan Abd.; Cob, Zaidi Che

    2014-09-01

    This study describes the apicomplexa as well as other parasites infecting organs/tissues of the hard clam Meretrix meretrix Linnaeus, from Merambong Shoal, Western Johor Straits, Malaysia. Samples were collected randomly by hand picking, in November and December 2013. Histological techniques were performed, stained using Masson's Trichrome protocol and observed under light microscope. The results showed that gonad and gill were the most infected organs followed by digestive gland, intestine and adductor muscle. No pathology condition was observed in the mantle. Histophatological examination showed that the gregarine, Nematopsis, unidentified coccidian and Perkinsus were found in the gill and gonad, and also in the numerous hemocytes. Other pathological conditions such as bacteria-like inclusion and intracellular bacteria were also observed in the same organs. Further investigations are needed particularly on other molluscs present at the study area. Understanding the morphology and pathology of parasites infecting mollusks are very important for management of the resources.

  19. Sirtuins of parasitic protozoa: In search of function(s)

    PubMed Central

    Religa, Agnieszka A.; Waters, Andrew P.

    2012-01-01

    The SIR2 family of NAD+-dependent protein deacetylases, collectively called sirtuins, has been of central interest due to their proposed roles in life-span regulation and ageing. Sirtuins are one group of environment sensors of a cell interpreting external information and orchestrating internal responses at the sub-cellular level, through participation in gene regulation mechanisms. Remarkably conserved across all kingdoms of life SIR2 proteins in several protozoan parasites appear to have both conserved and intriguing unique functions. This review summarises our current knowledge of the members of the sirtuin families in Apicomplexa, including Plasmodium, and other protozoan parasites such as Trypanosoma and Leishmania. The wide diversity of processes regulated by SIR2 proteins makes them targets worthy of exploitation in anti-parasitic therapies. PMID:22906508

  20. Plasmodium falciparum Rab1A Localizes to Rhoptries in Schizonts

    PubMed Central

    Morse, David; Webster, Wesley; Kalanon, Ming; Langsley, Gordon; McFadden, Geoffrey I.

    2016-01-01

    Over-expression of a GFP-PfRab1A fusion protein in Plasmodium falciparum schizonts produces a punctate pattern of fluorescence typical of rhoptries, secretory organelles involved in host cell invasion. The GFP-positive bodies were purified by a combination of differential and density gradient centrifugation and their protein content determined by MS/MS sequencing. Consistent with the GFP rhoptry-like pattern of transgenic parasites, four of the 19 proteins identified have been previously described to be rhoptry-associated and another four are ER or ER-associated proteins. Confirmation that GFP-PfRab1A decorates rhoptries was obtained by its co-localization with Rap1 and Ron4 in late phase schizonts. We conclude that PfRab1A potentially regulates vesicular traffic from the endoplasmic reticulum to the rhoptries in Apicomplexa parasites. PMID:27348424

  1. Molecular survey of parasites in introduced Pelophylax perezi (Ranidae) water frogs in the Azores.

    PubMed

    James Harris, D; Spigonardi, Maria Pia; Maia, João P M C; Cunha, Regina T

    2013-12-01

    Water frogs, Pelophylax perezi, that are introduced in the Azores, were screened for parasites using PCR primers known to amplify Apicomplexa parasites, and using nematode-specific primers. With the former, three different organisms were detected: Hepatozoon, a trichodinid protozoan ciliate and a possible Stramenopile. Using the latter set of primers, a single unknown spirurid nematode was also detected. Phylogenetic analyses indicate that Hepatozoon detected within amphibian hosts appear to form a clade, although relationships of these parasites do not match the vertebrate intermediate host phylogeny. Regarding the possible Stramenopile, it is unclear whether this organism was actually present on the amphibian or in the water on the surface of the tissue sample. Our findings highlight that many different organisms can be detected with these primers and that they can be used to screen introduced host populations to detect parasites that have been brought with them.

  2. Lytic Cycle of Toxoplasma gondii

    PubMed Central

    Black, Michael W.; Boothroyd, John C.

    2000-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular pathogen within the phylum Apicomplexa. This protozoan parasite is one of the most widespread, with a broad host range including many birds and mammals and a geographic range that is nearly worldwide. While infection of healthy adults is usually relatively mild, serious disease can result in utero or when the host is immunocompromised. This sophisticated eukaryote has many specialized features that make it well suited to its intracellular lifestyle. In this review, we describe the current knowledge of how the asexual tachyzoite stage of Toxoplasma attaches to, invades, replicates in, and exits the host cell. Since this process is closely analogous to the way in which viruses reproduce, we refer to it as the Toxoplasma “lytic cycle.” PMID:10974128

  3. Intravacuolar Membranes Regulate CD8 T Cell Recognition of Membrane-Bound Toxoplasma gondii Protective Antigen.

    PubMed

    Lopez, Jodie; Bittame, Amina; Massera, Céline; Vasseur, Virginie; Effantin, Grégory; Valat, Anne; Buaillon, Célia; Allart, Sophie; Fox, Barbara A; Rommereim, Leah M; Bzik, David J; Schoehn, Guy; Weissenhorn, Winfried; Dubremetz, Jean-François; Gagnon, Jean; Mercier, Corinne; Cesbron-Delauw, Marie-France; Blanchard, Nicolas

    2015-12-15

    Apicomplexa parasites such as Toxoplasma gondii target effectors to and across the boundary of their parasitophorous vacuole (PV), resulting in host cell subversion and potential presentation by MHC class I molecules for CD8 T cell recognition. The host-parasite interface comprises the PV limiting membrane and a highly curved, membranous intravacuolar network (IVN) of uncertain function. Here, using a cell-free minimal system, we dissect how membrane tubules are shaped by the parasite effectors GRA2 and GRA6. We show that membrane association regulates access of the GRA6 protective antigen to the MHC I pathway in infected cells. Although insertion of GRA6 in the PV membrane is key for immunogenicity, association of GRA6 with the IVN limits presentation and curtails GRA6-specific CD8 responses in mice. Thus, membrane deformations of the PV regulate access of antigens to the MHC class I pathway, and the IVN may play a role in immune modulation.

  4. Emergence of Mutations in the K13 Propeller Gene of Plasmodium falciparum Isolates from Dakar, Senegal, in 2013-2014.

    PubMed

    Boussaroque, Agathe; Fall, Bécaye; Madamet, Marylin; Camara, Cheikhou; Benoit, Nicolas; Fall, Mansour; Nakoulima, Aminata; Dionne, Pierre; Fall, Kadidiatou Ba; Diatta, Bakary; Diémé, Yaya; Wade, Boubacar; Pradines, Bruno

    2015-10-26

    The kelch 13 (K13) propeller gene is associated with artemisinin resistance. In a previous work, there were no mutations found in 138 Plasmodium falciparum isolates collected in 2012 and 2013 from patients residing in Dakar, Senegal (M. Torrentino-Madamet et al., Malar J 13:472, 2014, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1475-2875-13-472). However, the N554H, Q613H, and V637I mutations were identified in the propeller region of K13 in 92 (5.5%) isolates in 2013 and 2014. There were five polymorphisms identified in the Plasmodium/Apicomplexa-specific domain (K123R, N137S, N142NN/NNN, T149S, and K189T/N).

  5. Global biogeography of highly diverse protistan communities in soil.

    PubMed

    Bates, Scott T; Clemente, Jose C; Flores, Gilberto E; Walters, William Anthony; Parfrey, Laura Wegener; Knight, Rob; Fierer, Noah

    2013-03-01

    Protists are ubiquitous members of soil microbial communities, but the structure of these communities, and the factors that influence their diversity, are poorly understood. We used barcoded pyrosequencing to survey comprehensively the diversity of soil protists from 40 sites across a broad geographic range that represent a variety of biome types, from tropical forests to deserts. In addition to taxa known to be dominant in soil, including Cercozoa and Ciliophora, we found high relative abundances of groups such as Apicomplexa and Dinophyceae that have not previously been recognized as being important components of soil microbial communities. Soil protistan communities were highly diverse, approaching the extreme diversity of their bacterial counterparts across the same sites. Like bacterial taxa, protistan taxa were not globally distributed, and the composition of these communities diverged considerably across large geographic distances. However, soil protistan and bacterial communities exhibit very different global-scale biogeographical patterns, with protistan communities strongly structured by climatic conditions that regulate annual soil moisture availability.

  6. Identification of Sequences Encoding Symbiodinium minutum Mitochondrial Proteins

    PubMed Central

    Butterfield, Erin R.; Howe, Christopher J.; Nisbet, R. Ellen R.

    2016-01-01

    The dinoflagellates are an extremely diverse group of algae closely related to the Apicomplexa and the ciliates. Much work has previously been undertaken to determine the presence of various biochemical pathways within dinoflagellate mitochondria. However, these studies were unable to identify several key transcripts including those encoding proteins involved in the pyruvate dehydrogenase complex, iron–sulfur cluster biosynthesis, and protein import. Here, we analyze the draft nuclear genome of the dinoflagellate Symbiodinium minutum, as well as RNAseq data to identify nuclear genes encoding mitochondrial proteins. The results confirm the presence of a complete tricarboxylic acid cycle in the dinoflagellates. Results also demonstrate the difficulties in using the genome sequence for the identification of genes due to the large number of introns, but show that it is highly useful for the determination of gene duplication events. PMID:26798115

  7. Identification of Sequences Encoding Symbiodinium minutum Mitochondrial Proteins.

    PubMed

    Butterfield, Erin R; Howe, Christopher J; Nisbet, R Ellen R

    2016-01-21

    The dinoflagellates are an extremely diverse group of algae closely related to the Apicomplexa and the ciliates. Much work has previously been undertaken to determine the presence of various biochemical pathways within dinoflagellate mitochondria. However, these studies were unable to identify several key transcripts including those encoding proteins involved in the pyruvate dehydrogenase complex, iron-sulfur cluster biosynthesis, and protein import. Here, we analyze the draft nuclear genome of the dinoflagellate Symbiodinium minutum, as well as RNAseq data to identify nuclear genes encoding mitochondrial proteins. The results confirm the presence of a complete tricarboxylic acid cycle in the dinoflagellates. Results also demonstrate the difficulties in using the genome sequence for the identification of genes due to the large number of introns, but show that it is highly useful for the determination of gene duplication events.

  8. A new Haemogregarina species of the alligator snapping turtle, Macrochelys temminckii (Testudines: Chelydridae), in Georgia and Florida that produces macromeronts in circulating erythrocytes.

    PubMed

    Telford, Sam R; Norton, Terry M; Moler, Paul E; Jensen, John B

    2009-02-01

    Haemogregarina macrochelysi n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Haemogregarinidae) of the alligator snapping turtle, Macrochelys temminckii, is characterized by slender, recurved gamonts 29-35 x 3-4.5 microm, in which the anterior limb comprises 48-54% of the total length. The gamont nucleus, 5-7.5 x 2-5 microm, is situated at approximately midbody of the gamont. Meronts typical of Haemogregarina occupying erythrocytes have 3-8 small, compact nuclei and are 13-17 x 4.5-9 microm. Erythrocytic meronts that contain larger, nearly square or rectangular nuclei become rounded, and then undergo 7 or more nuclear divisions, which produce very large, usually ovoid to rounded meronts that may contain up to 150 nuclei or more within the thinly stretched host erythrocyte membrane. In tissues of the Placobdella spp. leech vectors, merogony occurs directly from sporozoites, forming merozoites that presumably are infective for the turtle host. PMID:19245282

  9. Hepatozoon infection prevalence in four snake genera: influence of diet, prey parasitemia levels, or parasite type?

    PubMed

    Tomé, Beatriz; Maia, João P M C; Harris, D James

    2012-10-01

    Hepatozoon spp. (Apicomplexa: Haemogregarinidae) are the most commonly reported hemoparasites from snakes. Of over 300 Hepatozoon species identified, more than 120 were described from snakes. However, recent genetic assessments have found Hepatozoon lineages recovered from both prey and predators, indicating that diet may play an important role in the infection of final vertebrate hosts. Here 4 different snake genera with different diets were assessed. Hepatozoon spp. prevalence varied greatly between the genera, but only lineages already identified from potential prey, i.e., gecko and lacertid lizards, were recovered from the snakes. Interestingly, the Hepatozoon spp. lineage known from geckos was the most common in the snakes, but this does not reflect their diet. Higher parasitemia levels, reported for some geckos relative to lacertid lizards, may play a role. Alternatively, this lineage may be more effective at parasitizing snakes or may occur, despite being unrecorded, in other vertebrate groups consumed by snakes. PMID:22551400

  10. Cryptic organelle homology in Apicomplexan parasites: Insights from evolutionary cell biology

    PubMed Central

    Klinger, Christen M.; Nisbet, R. Ellen; Ouologuem, Dinkorma T.; Roos, David S.; Dacks, Joel B.

    2013-01-01

    The economic and clinical significance of apicomplexan parasites drives interest in their many evolutionary novelties. Distinctive intracellular organelles play key roles in parasite motility, invasion, metabolism, and replication, and understanding their relationship with the organelles of better-studied eukaryotic systems suggests potential targets for therapeutic intervention. Recent work has demonstrated divergent aspects of canonical eukaryotic components in the apicomplexa, including Golgi bodies and mitochondria. The apicoplast is a relict plastid of secondary endosymbiotic origin, harboring metabolic pathways distinct from those of host species. The inner membrane complex is derived from the cortical alveoli defining the superphylum Alveolata, but in apicomplexans functions in parasite motility and replication. Micronemes and rhoptries are associated with establishment of the intracellular niche, and define the apical complex for which the phylum is named. Morphological, cell biological and molecular evidence strongly suggest that these organelles are derived from the endocytic pathway. PMID:23932202

  11. A new Haemogregarina species of the alligator snapping turtle, Macrochelys temminckii (Testudines: Chelydridae), in Georgia and Florida that produces macromeronts in circulating erythrocytes.

    PubMed

    Telford, Sam R; Norton, Terry M; Moler, Paul E; Jensen, John B

    2009-02-01

    Haemogregarina macrochelysi n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Haemogregarinidae) of the alligator snapping turtle, Macrochelys temminckii, is characterized by slender, recurved gamonts 29-35 x 3-4.5 microm, in which the anterior limb comprises 48-54% of the total length. The gamont nucleus, 5-7.5 x 2-5 microm, is situated at approximately midbody of the gamont. Meronts typical of Haemogregarina occupying erythrocytes have 3-8 small, compact nuclei and are 13-17 x 4.5-9 microm. Erythrocytic meronts that contain larger, nearly square or rectangular nuclei become rounded, and then undergo 7 or more nuclear divisions, which produce very large, usually ovoid to rounded meronts that may contain up to 150 nuclei or more within the thinly stretched host erythrocyte membrane. In tissues of the Placobdella spp. leech vectors, merogony occurs directly from sporozoites, forming merozoites that presumably are infective for the turtle host.

  12. Solar Radiation Induces Non-Nuclear Perturbations and a False Start to Regulated Exocytosis in Cryptosporidium parvum

    PubMed Central

    King, Brendon J.; Hoefel, Daniel; Ee Wong, Pao; Monis, Paul T.

    2010-01-01

    Stratospheric ozone depletion, climate warming and acidification of aquatic ecosystems have resulted in elevated levels of solar radiation reaching many aquatic environments with an increased deleterious impact on a wide range of living organisms. While detrimental effects on living organisms are thought to occur primarily through DNA damage, solar UV can also damage cellular proteins, lipids and signalling pathways. Cryptosporidium, a member of the eukaryotic phylum Apicomplexa, contain numerous vesicular secretory organelles and their discharge via regulated exocytosis is essential for the successful establishment of infection. Using flow cytometric techniques we demonstrate that solar UV rapidly induces sporozoite exocytosis resulting in a significant reduction in the ability of sporozoites to attach and invade host cells. We found that solar UV induced sporozoite membrane depolarization, resulting in reduced cellular ATP and increased cytosolic calcium. These changes were accompanied by a reduction in the internal granularity of sporozoites, indicative of apical organelle discharge, which was confirmed by analysis of sporozoites with an exocytosis-sensitive dye. The precise timing of apical organelle discharge in the presence of a compatible host cell is critical for sporozoite attachment and invasion. Our results demonstrate for the first time how solar UV radiation can interfere with exocytosis, a fundamental cellular process in all eukaryotic cells. We contend that not only may the forecast increases in solar radiation in both aquatic and terrestrial environments significantly affect members of the Apicomplexa, solar UV-induced membrane depolarizations resulting in cytosolic calcium perturbation may affect a wider range of eukaryotic organisms through antagonistic effects on a myriad of calcium dependant cellular functions. PMID:20668710

  13. Structural and Functional Characterization of Bc28.1, Major Erythrocyte-binding Protein from Babesia canis Merozoite Surface*

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Yin-Shan; Murciano, Brice; Moubri, Karina; Cibrelus, Prisca; Schetters, Theo; Gorenflot, André; Delbecq, Stéphane; Roumestand, Christian

    2012-01-01

    Babesiosis (formerly known as piroplasmosis) is a tick-borne disease caused by the intraerythrocytic development of protozoa parasites from the genus Babesia. Like Plasmodium falciparum, the agent of malaria, or Toxoplasma gondii, responsible for human toxoplasmosis, Babesia belongs to the Apicomplexa family. Babesia canis is the agent of the canine babesiosis in Europe. Clinical manifestations of this disease range from mild to severe and possibly lead to death by multiple organ failure. The identification and characterization of parasite surface proteins represent major goals, both for the understanding of the Apicomplexa invasion process and for the vaccine potential of such antigens. Indeed, we have already shown that Bd37, the major antigenic adhesion protein from Babesia divergens, the agent of bovine babesiosis, was able to induce complete protection against various parasite strains. The major merozoite surface antigens of Babesia canis have been described as a 28-kDa membrane protein family, anchored at the surface of the merozoite. Here, we demonstrate that Bc28.1, a major member of this multigenic family, is expressed at high levels at the surface of the merozoite. This protein is also found in the parasite in vitro culture supernatants, which are the basis of effective vaccines against canine babesiosis. We defined the erythrocyte binding function of Bc28.1 and determined its high resolution solution structure using NMR spectroscopy. Surprisingly, although these proteins are thought to play a similar role in the adhesion process, the structure of Bc28.1 from B. canis appears unrelated to the previously published structure of Bd37 from B. divergens. Site-directed mutagenesis experiments also suggest that the mechanism of the interaction with the erythrocyte membrane could be different for the two proteins. The resolution of the structure of Bc28 represents a milestone for the characterization of the parasite erythrocyte binding and its interaction with

  14. Solar radiation induces non-nuclear perturbations and a false start to regulated exocytosis in Cryptosporidium parvum.

    PubMed

    King, Brendon J; Hoefel, Daniel; Wong, Pao Ee; Monis, Paul T

    2010-01-01

    Stratospheric ozone depletion, climate warming and acidification of aquatic ecosystems have resulted in elevated levels of solar radiation reaching many aquatic environments with an increased deleterious impact on a wide range of living organisms. While detrimental effects on living organisms are thought to occur primarily through DNA damage, solar UV can also damage cellular proteins, lipids and signalling pathways. Cryptosporidium, a member of the eukaryotic phylum Apicomplexa, contain numerous vesicular secretory organelles and their discharge via regulated exocytosis is essential for the successful establishment of infection. Using flow cytometric techniques we demonstrate that solar UV rapidly induces sporozoite exocytosis resulting in a significant reduction in the ability of sporozoites to attach and invade host cells. We found that solar UV induced sporozoite membrane depolarization, resulting in reduced cellular ATP and increased cytosolic calcium. These changes were accompanied by a reduction in the internal granularity of sporozoites, indicative of apical organelle discharge, which was confirmed by analysis of sporozoites with an exocytosis-sensitive dye. The precise timing of apical organelle discharge in the presence of a compatible host cell is critical for sporozoite attachment and invasion. Our results demonstrate for the first time how solar UV radiation can interfere with exocytosis, a fundamental cellular process in all eukaryotic cells. We contend that not only may the forecast increases in solar radiation in both aquatic and terrestrial environments significantly affect members of the Apicomplexa, solar UV-induced membrane depolarizations resulting in cytosolic calcium perturbation may affect a wider range of eukaryotic organisms through antagonistic effects on a myriad of calcium dependant cellular functions. PMID:20668710

  15. Expression of Cryptosporidium parvum Cpa135/CpCCP1 chimeras in Giardia duodenalis: organization of the protein domains affects the protein secretion pathway.

    PubMed

    Lalle, Marco; Rosati, Maria Adelaide; Bien, Justina; Hehl, Adrian B; Pozio, Edoardo; Tosini, Fabio

    2011-03-01

    Cpa135 is a multidomain antigenic protein secreted at the sporozoite stage of the Apicomplexa protozoan Cryptosporidium parvum. Previous studies have shown that the protozoan flagellate parasite Giardia duodenalis is a suitable system for the heterologous expression of secreted proteins of Apicomplexa. Here, we designed three different Cpa135 variants fused to a C-terminal HA tag in order to test their expression in G. duodenalis under the control of the inducible promoter of the cyst wall protein 1 gene (cwp1). The three Cpa135 chimeras encompassed different portions of the protein; CpaG encodes the entire polypeptide of 1574 amino acids (aa); CpaGΔC includes the first 826 aa at the N-terminus; and CpaGΔN consists in of the final 833 aa at the C-terminus. Immunoblot experiments showed that CpaG and CpaGΔN maintained the epitopes recognized by anti-C. parvum-specific human serum. The intracellular localization and transport of the three Cpa135 variants were studied by immunofluorescence in combination with G. duodenalis-specific antibodies. CpaGΔC was mainly accumulated in the endoplasmic reticulum and the intact form was also excreted in the medium. Differently, the Cpa135 chimeras possessing an intact C-terminus (CpaG and CpaGΔN) were transported towards the forming cyst wall possibly and were not detected in the medium. Furthermore, the full-length CpaG was incorporated into the cyst wall. The data presented suggest that the C-terminus of Cpa135, which includes a cysteine reach domain, could influence the secretion of the chimeric proteins. PMID:21112325

  16. Novel type of linear mitochondrial genomes with dual flip-flop inversion system in apicomplexan parasites, Babesia microti and Babesia rodhaini

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Mitochondrial (mt) genomes vary considerably in size, structure and gene content. The mt genomes of the phylum Apicomplexa, which includes important human pathogens such as the malaria parasite Plasmodium, also show marked diversity of structure. Plasmodium has a concatenated linear mt genome of the smallest size (6-kb); Babesia and Theileria have a linear monomeric mt genome (6.5-kb to 8.2-kb) with terminal inverted repeats; Eimeria, which is distantly related to Plasmodium and Babesia/Theileria, possesses a mt genome (6.2-kb) with a concatemeric form similar to that of Plasmodium; Cryptosporidium, the earliest branching lineage within the phylum Apicomplexa, has no mt genome. We are interested in the evolutionary origin of linear mt genomes of Babesia/Theileria, and have investigated mt genome structures in members of archaeopiroplasmid, a lineage branched off earlier from Babesia/Theileria. Results The complete mt genomes of archaeopiroplasmid parasites, Babesia microti and Babesia rodhaini, were sequenced. The mt genomes of B. microti (11.1-kb) and B. rodhaini (6.9-kb) possess two pairs of unique inverted repeats, IR-A and IR-B. Flip-flop inversions between two IR-As and between two IR-Bs appear to generate four distinct genome structures that are present at an equi-molar ratio. An individual parasite contained multiple mt genome structures, with 20 copies and 2 – 3 copies per haploid nuclear genome in B. microti and B. rodhaini, respectively. Conclusion We found a novel linear monomeric mt genome structure of B. microti and B. rhodhaini equipped with dual flip-flop inversion system, by which four distinct genome structures are readily generated. To our knowledge, this study is the first to report the presence of two pairs of distinct IR sequences within a monomeric linear mt genome. The present finding provides insight into further understanding of evolution of mt genome structure. PMID:23151128

  17. Elongation Factor-1α Is a Novel Protein Associated with Host Cell Invasion and a Potential Protective Antigen of Cryptosporidium parvum *

    PubMed Central

    Matsubayashi, Makoto; Teramoto-Kimata, Isao; Uni, Shigehiko; Lillehoj, Hyun S.; Matsuda, Haruo; Furuya, Masaru; Tani, Hiroyuki; Sasai, Kazumi

    2013-01-01

    The phylum Apicomplexa comprises obligate intracellular parasites that infect vertebrates. All invasive forms of Apicomplexa possess an apical complex, a unique assembly of organelles localized to the anterior end of the cell and involved in host cell invasion. Previously, we generated a chicken monoclonal antibody (mAb), 6D-12-G10, with specificity for an antigen located in the apical cytoskeleton of Eimeria acervulina sporozoites. This antigen was highly conserved among Apicomplexan parasites, including other Eimeria spp., Toxoplasma, Neospora, and Cryptosporidium. In the present study, we identified the apical cytoskeletal antigen of Cryptosporidium parvum (C. parvum) and further characterized this antigen in C. parvum to assess its potential as a target molecule against cryptosporidiosis. Indirect immunofluorescence demonstrated that the reactivity of 6D-12-G10 with C. parvum sporozoites was similar to those of anti-β- and anti-γ-tubulins antibodies. Immunoelectron microscopy with the 6D-12-G10 mAb detected the antigen both on the sporozoite surface and underneath the inner membrane at the apical region of zoites. The 6D-12-G10 mAb significantly inhibited in vitro host cell invasion by C. parvum. MALDI-TOF/MS and LC-MS/MS analysis of tryptic peptides revealed that the mAb 6D-12-G10 target antigen was elongation factor-1α (EF-1α). These results indicate that C. parvum EF-1α plays an essential role in mediating host cell entry by the parasite and, as such, could be a candidate vaccine antigen against cryptosporidiosis. PMID:24085304

  18. Plasticity between MyoC- and MyoA-Glideosomes: An Example of Functional Compensation in Toxoplasma gondii Invasion

    PubMed Central

    Frénal, Karine; Marq, Jean-Baptiste; Jacot, Damien; Polonais, Valérie; Soldati-Favre, Dominique

    2014-01-01

    The glideosome is an actomyosin-based machinery that powers motility in Apicomplexa and participates in host cell invasion and egress from infected cells. The central component of the glideosome, myosin A (MyoA), is a motor recruited at the pellicle by the acylated gliding-associated protein GAP45. In Toxoplasma gondii, GAP45 also contributes to the cohesion of the pellicle, composed of the inner membrane complex (IMC) and the plasma membrane, during motor traction. GAP70 was previously identified as a paralog of GAP45 that is tailored to recruit MyoA at the apical cap in the coccidian subgroup of the Apicomplexa. A third member of this family, GAP80, is demonstrated here to assemble a new glideosome, which recruits the class XIV myosin C (MyoC) at the basal polar ring. MyoC shares the same myosin light chains as MyoA and also interacts with the integral IMC proteins GAP50 and GAP40. Moreover, a central component of this complex, the IMC-associated protein 1 (IAP1), acts as the key determinant for the restricted localization of MyoC to the posterior pole. Deletion of specific components of the MyoC-glideosome underscores the installation of compensatory mechanisms with components of the MyoA-glideosome. Conversely, removal of MyoA leads to the relocalization of MyoC along the pellicle and at the apical cap that accounts for residual invasion. The two glideosomes exhibit a considerable level of plasticity to ensure parasite survival. PMID:25393004

  19. Potential effects of the United States-Mexico border fence on wildlife.

    PubMed

    Flesch, Aaron D; Epps, Clinton W; Cain, James W; Clark, Matt; Krausman, Paul R; Morgart, John R

    2010-02-01

    Security infrastructure along international boundaries threatens to degrade connectivity for wildlife. To explore potential effects of a fence under construction along the U.S.-Mexico border on wildlife, we assessed movement behavior of two species with different life histories whose regional persistence may depend on transboundary movements. We used radiotelemetry to assess how vegetation and landscape structure affect flight and natal dispersal behaviors of Ferruginous Pygmy-Owls (Glaucidium brasilianum), and satellite telemetry, gene-flow estimates, and least-cost path models to assess movement behavior and interpopulation connectivity of desert bighorn sheep (Ovis canadensis mexicana). Flight height of Pygmy-Owls averaged only 1.4 m (SE 0.1) above ground, and only 23% of flights exceeded 4 m. Juvenile Pygmy-Owls dispersed at slower speeds, changed direction more, and had lower colonization success in landscapes with larger vegetation openings or higher levels of disturbance (p < or = 0.047), which suggests large vegetation gaps coupled with tall fences may limit transboundary movements. Female bighorn sheep crossed valleys up to 4.9 km wide, and microsatellite analyses indicated relatively high levels of gene flow and migration (95% CI for F(ST)=0.010-0.115, Nm = 1.9-24.8, M =10.4-15.4) between populations divided by an 11-km valley. Models of gene flow based on regional topography and movement barriers suggested that nine populations of bighorn sheep in northwestern Sonora are linked by dispersal with those in neighboring Arizona. Disruption of transboundary movement corridors by impermeable fencing would isolate some populations on the Arizona side. Connectivity for other species with similar movement abilities and spatial distributions may be affected by border development, yet mitigation strategies could address needs of wildlife and humans.

  20. Spatial, temporal, and density-dependent components of habitat quality for a desert owl.

    PubMed

    Flesch, Aaron D; Hutto, Richard L; van Leeuwen, Willem J D; Hartfield, Kyle; Jacobs, Sky

    2015-01-01

    Spatial variation in resources is a fundamental driver of habitat quality but the realized value of resources at any point in space may depend on the effects of conspecifics and stochastic factors, such as weather, which vary through time. We evaluated the relative and combined effects of habitat resources, weather, and conspecifics on habitat quality for ferruginous pygmy-owls (Glaucidium brasilianum) in the Sonoran Desert of northwest Mexico by monitoring reproductive output and conspecific abundance over 10 years in and around 107 territory patches. Variation in reproductive output was much greater across space than time, and although habitat resources explained a much greater proportion of that variation (0.70) than weather (0.17) or conspecifics (0.13), evidence for interactions among each of these components of the environment was strong. Relative to habitat that was persistently low in quality, high-quality habitat buffered the negative effects of conspecifics and amplified the benefits of favorable weather, but did not buffer the disadvantages of harsh weather. Moreover, the positive effects of favorable weather at low conspecific densities were offset by intraspecific competition at high densities. Although realized habitat quality declined with increasing conspecific density suggesting interference mechanisms associated with an Ideal Free Distribution, broad spatial heterogeneity in habitat quality persisted. Factors linked to food resources had positive effects on reproductive output but only where nest cavities were sufficiently abundant to mitigate the negative effects of heterospecific enemies. Annual precipitation and brooding-season temperature had strong multiplicative effects on reproductive output, which declined at increasing rates as drought and temperature increased, reflecting conditions predicted to become more frequent with climate change. Because the collective environment influences habitat quality in complex ways, integrated approaches

  1. Spatial, Temporal, and Density-Dependent Components of Habitat Quality for a Desert Owl

    PubMed Central

    Flesch, Aaron D.; Hutto, Richard L.; van Leeuwen, Willem J. D.; Hartfield, Kyle; Jacobs, Sky

    2015-01-01

    Spatial variation in resources is a fundamental driver of habitat quality but the realized value of resources at any point in space may depend on the effects of conspecifics and stochastic factors, such as weather, which vary through time. We evaluated the relative and combined effects of habitat resources, weather, and conspecifics on habitat quality for ferruginous pygmy-owls (Glaucidium brasilianum) in the Sonoran Desert of northwest Mexico by monitoring reproductive output and conspecific abundance over 10 years in and around 107 territory patches. Variation in reproductive output was much greater across space than time, and although habitat resources explained a much greater proportion of that variation (0.70) than weather (0.17) or conspecifics (0.13), evidence for interactions among each of these components of the environment was strong. Relative to habitat that was persistently low in quality, high-quality habitat buffered the negative effects of conspecifics and amplified the benefits of favorable weather, but did not buffer the disadvantages of harsh weather. Moreover, the positive effects of favorable weather at low conspecific densities were offset by intraspecific competition at high densities. Although realized habitat quality declined with increasing conspecific density suggesting interference mechanisms associated with an Ideal Free Distribution, broad spatial heterogeneity in habitat quality persisted. Factors linked to food resources had positive effects on reproductive output but only where nest cavities were sufficiently abundant to mitigate the negative effects of heterospecific enemies. Annual precipitation and brooding-season temperature had strong multiplicative effects on reproductive output, which declined at increasing rates as drought and temperature increased, reflecting conditions predicted to become more frequent with climate change. Because the collective environment influences habitat quality in complex ways, integrated approaches

  2. Initiation of a Sarcocystis neurona expressed sequence tag (EST) sequencing project: a preliminary report.

    PubMed

    Howe, D K

    2001-02-26

    To accelerate genetic and molecular characterization of Sarcocystis neurona, the primary causative agent of equine protozoal myeloencephalitis (EPM), a sequencing project has been initiated that will generate approximately 7000-8000 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) from this apicomplexan parasite. Poly(A)(+) RNA was isolated from culture-derived S. neurona merozoites, and a cDNA library was constructed in a unidirectional lambda phage cloning vector. Sixty phage clones were randomly picked from the library, and the cDNA inserts were amplified from these clones using the T3 and T7 primers that flank the multi-cloning site of the lambda vector. This analysis demonstrated that 100% (60/60) of the clones selected from this library contained recombinant cDNA inserts ranging in size from 0.4 to 4.0 kilobases (kb) with an average size of 1.23kb. Single-pass sequencing from the 5' end of the 60 amplified cDNAs produced high-quality nucleotide sequence from 53 of the clones. Comparison of these ESTs to the current gene databases revealed significant matches for 10 of the ESTs, six of which are similar to sequences from other Apicomplexa (i.e., Toxoplasma gondii). Importantly, none of the ESTs were of obvious mammalian origin, thus indicating that the cDNAs in this library were derived primarily from parasite mRNA and not from mRNA of the bovine turbinate host cells. Collectively, these data indicate that the described cDNA library will provide an excellent substrate for generating a portion of the ESTs that are planned from S. neurona. This sequencing project will greatly hasten gene discovery for this protozoan pathogen thereby enhancing efforts towards the development of improved diagnostics, treatments, and preventatives for EPM. In addition, the S. neurona ESTs will represent a significant contribution to the extensive database of sequences from the Apicomplexa. Comparative analyses of these apicomplexan sequences will likely offer a multitude of important information

  3. Highly Divergent Mitochondrial ATP Synthase Complexes in Tetrahymena thermophila

    PubMed Central

    Balabaskaran Nina, Praveen; Dudkina, Natalya V.; Kane, Lesley A.; van Eyk, Jennifer E.; Boekema, Egbert J.; Mather, Michael W.; Vaidya, Akhil B.

    2010-01-01

    The F-type ATP synthase complex is a rotary nano-motor driven by proton motive force to synthesize ATP. Its F1 sector catalyzes ATP synthesis, whereas the Fo sector conducts the protons and provides a stator for the rotary action of the complex. Components of both F1 and Fo sectors are highly conserved across prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Therefore, it was a surprise that genes encoding the a and b subunits as well as other components of the Fo sector were undetectable in the sequenced genomes of a variety of apicomplexan parasites. While the parasitic existence of these organisms could explain the apparent incomplete nature of ATP synthase in Apicomplexa, genes for these essential components were absent even in Tetrahymena thermophila, a free-living ciliate belonging to a sister clade of Apicomplexa, which demonstrates robust oxidative phosphorylation. This observation raises the possibility that the entire clade of Alveolata may have invented novel means to operate ATP synthase complexes. To assess this remarkable possibility, we have carried out an investigation of the ATP synthase from T. thermophila. Blue native polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (BN-PAGE) revealed the ATP synthase to be present as a large complex. Structural study based on single particle electron microscopy analysis suggested the complex to be a dimer with several unique structures including an unusually large domain on the intermembrane side of the ATP synthase and novel domains flanking the c subunit rings. The two monomers were in a parallel configuration rather than the angled configuration previously observed in other organisms. Proteomic analyses of well-resolved ATP synthase complexes from 2-D BN/BN-PAGE identified orthologs of seven canonical ATP synthase subunits, and at least 13 novel proteins that constitute subunits apparently limited to the ciliate lineage. A mitochondrially encoded protein, Ymf66, with predicted eight transmembrane domains could be a substitute for the subunit a

  4. Epidemiologic aspects of the malaria transmission cycle in an area of very low incidence in Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Cerutti, Crispim; Boulos, Marcos; Coutinho, Arnídio F; Hatab, Maria do Carmo LD; Falqueto, Aloísio; Rezende, Helder R; Duarte, Ana Maria RC; Collins, William; Malafronte, Rosely S

    2007-01-01

    Background Extra-Amazonian autochthonous Plasmodium vivax infections have been reported in mountainous regions surrounded by the Atlantic Forest in Espírito Santo state, Brazil. Methods Sixty-five patients and 1,777 residents were surveyed between April 2001 and March 2004. Laboratory methods included thin and thick smears, multiplex-PCR, immunofluorescent assay (IFA) against P. vivax and Plasmodium malariae crude blood-stage antigens and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) for antibodies against the P. vivax-complex (P. vivax and variants) and P. malariae/Plasmodium brasilianum circumsporozoite-protein (CSP) antigens. Results Average patient age was 35.1 years. Most (78.5%) were males; 64.6% lived in rural areas; 35.4% were farmers; and 12.3% students. There was no relevant history of travel. Ninety-five per cent of the patients were experiencing their first episode of malaria. Laboratory data from 51 patients were consistent with P. vivax infection, which was determined by thin smear. Of these samples, 48 were assayed by multiplex-PCR. Forty-five were positive for P. vivax, confirming the parasitological results, while P. malariae was detected in one sample and two gave negative results. Fifty percent of the 50 patients tested had IgG antibodies against the P. vivax-complex or P. malariae CSP as determined by ELISA. The percentages of residents with IgM and IgG antibodies detected by IFA for P. malariae, P. vivax and Plasmodium falciparum who did not complain of malaria symptoms at the time blood was collected were 30.1% and 56.5%, 6.2% and 37.7%, and 13.5% and 13%, respectively. The same sera that reacted to P. vivax also reacted to P. malariae. The following numbers of samples were positive in multiplex-PCR: 23 for P. vivax; 15 for P. malariae; 9 for P. falciparum and only one for P. falciparum and P. malariae. All thin and thick smears were negative. ELISA against CSP antigens was positive in 25.4%, 6.3%, 10.7% and 15.1% of the samples tested for

  5. The 2-methylcitrate cycle is implicated in the detoxification of propionate in Toxoplasma gondii

    PubMed Central

    Limenitakis, Julien; Oppenheim, Rebecca D; Creek, Darren J; Foth, Bernardo J; Barrett, Michael P; Soldati-Favre, Dominique

    2013-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii belongs to the coccidian subgroup of the Apicomplexa phylum. The Coccidia are obligate intracellular pathogens that establish infection in their mammalian host via the enteric route. These parasites lack a mitochondrial pyruvate dehydrogenase complex but have preserved the degradation of branched-chain amino acids (BCAA) as a possible pathway to generate acetyl-CoA. Importantly, degradation of leucine, isoleucine and valine could lead to concomitant accumulation of propionyl-CoA, a toxic metabolite that inhibits cell growth. Like fungi and bacteria, the Coccidia possess the complete set of enzymes necessary to metabolize and detoxify propionate by oxidation to pyruvate via the 2-methylcitrate cycle (2-MCC). Phylogenetic analysis provides evidence that the 2-MCC was acquired via horizontal gene transfer. In T. gondii tachyzoites, this pathway is split between the cytosol and the mitochondrion. Although the rate-limiting enzyme 2-methylisocitrate lyase is dispensable for parasite survival, its substrates accumulate in parasites deficient in the enzyme and its absence confers increased sensitivity to propionic acid. BCAA is also dispensable in tachyzoites, leaving unresolved the source of mitochondrial acetyl-CoA. PMID:23279335

  6. Structural Evidence for Actin-like Filaments in Toxoplasma gondii Using High-Resolution Low-Voltage Field Emission Scanning Electron Microscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schatten, Heide; Sibley, L. David; Ris, Hans

    2003-08-01

    The protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii is representative of a large group of parasites within the phylum Apicomplexa, which share a highly unusual motility system that is crucial for locomotion and active host cell invasion. Despite the importance of motility in the pathology of these unicellular organisms, the motor mechanisms for locomotion remain uncertain, largely because only limited data exist about composition and organization of the cytoskeleton. By using cytoskeleton stabilizing protocols on membrane-extracted parasites and novel imaging with high-resolution low-voltage field emission scanning electron microscopy (LVFESEM), we were able to visualize for the first time a network of actin-sized filaments just below the cell membrane. A complex cytoskeletal network remained after removing the actin-sized fibers with cytochalasin D, revealing longitudinally arranged, subpellicular microtubules and intermediate-sized fibers of 10 nm, which, in stereo images, are seen both above and below the microtubules. These approaches open new possibilities to characterize more fully the largely unexplored and unconventional cytoskeletal motility complex in apicomplexan parasites.

  7. Prevalence of protozoa species in drinking and environmental water sources in Sudan.

    PubMed

    Shanan, Salah; Abd, Hadi; Bayoumi, Magdi; Saeed, Amir; Sandström, Gunnar

    2015-01-01

    Protozoa are eukaryotic cells distributed worldwide in nature and are receiving increasing attention as reservoirs and potential vectors for the transmission of pathogenic bacteria. In the environment, on the other hand, many genera of the protozoa are human and animal pathogens. Only limited information is available on these organisms in developing countries and so far no information on their presence is available from Sudan. It is necessary to establish a molecular identification of species of the protozoa from drinking and environmental water. 600 water samples were collected from five states (Gadarif, Khartoum, Kordofan, Juba, and Wad Madani) in Sudan and analysed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and sequencing. 57 out of 600 water samples were PCR positive for protozoa. 38 out of the 57 positive samples were identified by sequencing to contain 66 protozoa species including 19 (28.8%) amoebae, 17 (25.7%) Apicomplexa, 25 (37.9%) ciliates, and 5 (7.6%) flagellates. This study utilized molecular methods identified species belonging to all phyla of protozoa and presented a fast and accurate molecular detection and identification of pathogenic as well as free-living protozoa in water uncovering hazards facing public health. PMID:25789313

  8. Secretion of Antonospora (Paranosema) locustae proteins into infected cells suggests an active role of microsporidia in the control of host programs and metabolic processes.

    PubMed

    Senderskiy, Igor V; Timofeev, Sergey A; Seliverstova, Elena V; Pavlova, Olga A; Dolgikh, Viacheslav V

    2014-01-01

    Molecular tools of the intracellular protozoan pathogens Apicomplexa and Kinetoplastida for manipulation of host cell machinery have been the focus of investigation for approximately two decades. Microsporidia, fungi-related microorganisms forming another large group of obligate intracellular parasites, are characterized by development in direct contact with host cytoplasm (the majority of species), strong minimization of cell machinery, and acquisition of unique transporters to exploit host metabolic system. All the aforementioned features are suggestive of the ability of microsporidia to modify host metabolic and regulatory pathways. Seven proteins of the microsporidium Antonospora (Paranosema) locustae with predicted signal peptides but without transmembrane domains were overexpressed in Escherichia coli. Western-blot analysis with antibodies against recombinant products showed secretion of parasite proteins from different functional categories into the infected host cell. Secretion of parasite hexokinase and α/β-hydrolase was confirmed by immunofluorescence microscopy. In addition, this method showed specific accumulation of A. locustae hexokinase in host nuclei. Expression of hexokinase, trehalase, and two leucine-rich repeat proteins without any exogenous signal peptide led to their secretion in the yeast Pichia pastoris. In contrast, α/β-hydrolase was not found in the culture medium, though a significant amount of this enzyme accumulated in the yeast membrane fraction. These results suggest that microsporidia possess a broad set of enzymes and regulatory proteins secreted into infected cells to control host metabolic processes and molecular programs. PMID:24705470

  9. CenH3 evolution reflects meiotic symmetry as predicted by the centromere drive model.

    PubMed

    Zedek, František; Bureš, Petr

    2016-01-01

    The centromere drive model explaining rapid evolution of eukaryotic centromeres predicts higher frequency of positive selection acting on centromeric histone H3 (CenH3) in clades with asymmetric meiosis compared to the clades with only symmetric meiosis. However, despite the impression one might get from the literature, this key prediction of the centromere drive model has not only never been confirmed, but it has never been tested, because all the previous studies dealt only with the presence or absence instead of the frequency of positive selection. To provide evidence for or against different frequencies of positively selected CenH3 in asymmetrics and symmetrics, we have inferred the selective pressures acting on CenH3 in seventeen eukaryotic clades, including plants, animals, fungi, ciliates and apicomplexa, using codon-substitution models, and compared the inferred frequencies between asymmetrics and symmetrics in a quantitative manner. We have found that CenH3 has been evolving adaptively much more frequently in clades with asymmetric meiosis compared with clades displaying only symmetric meiosis which confirms the prediction of centromere drive model. Our findings indicate that the evolution of asymmetric meiosis required CenH3 to evolve adaptively more often to counterbalance the negative consequences of centromere drive. PMID:27629066

  10. Inbreeding and parasite sex ratios.

    PubMed

    Nee, Sean; West, Stuart A; Read, Andrew F

    2002-04-01

    The breeding system of parasitic protozoa affects the evolution of drug resistance and virulence, and is relevant to disease diagnosis and the development of chemo- and immunotherapy. A major group of protozoan parasites, the phylum Apicomplexa, that includes the aetiological agents of malaria, toxoplasmosis and coccidiosis, all have dimorphic sexual stages. The sex ratio (proportion of males produced by parasites) is predicted to depend upon the inbreeding rate, and it has been suggested that sex-ratio data offer a relatively cheap and easy method for indirectly estimating inbreeding rates. Here, we exploit a new theoretical machinery to show that there are generally valid relationships between f, Wright's coefficient of inbreeding, and sex ratio, z(*), the generality being with respect to population structure. To focus the discussion, we concentrate on malaria and show that the previously derived result, f = 1 - 2z(*), does not depend on the artificial assumptions about population structure that were previously made. Not only does this justify the use of sex ratio as an indirect measure of f, but also we argue that it may actually be preferable to measure f by measuring sex ratios, rather than by measuring departures from Hardy-Weinberg genotypic proportions both in malaria and parasites more generally. PMID:11934369

  11. Zoonotic babesiosis: overview of the disease and novel aspects of pathogen identity.

    PubMed

    Gray, Jeremy; Zintl, Annetta; Hildebrandt, Anke; Hunfeld, Klaus-Peter; Weiss, Louis

    2010-03-01

    Babesiosis is a zoonosis caused by tick-transmitted intraerythrocytic protozoa of the Phylum Apicomplexa. The disease mostly occurs in the USA, but cases have also been reported in several European countries, in Egypt, India, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, and South Africa. The main pathological event is lysis of erythrocytes resulting in haemolytic anaemia, which in severe cases may lead to organ failure and death, particularly in immunocompromised patients. The 2 groups of parasites involved, Babesia microti-like and Babesia sensu stricto (s.s.) species, differ in their life cycle characteristics and susceptibility to antibabesial drugs. Molecular taxonomy is now making a major contribution to the identification of novel pathogens within both groups. Effective treatment of severe cases was initially hampered by the lack of specific antibabesial drugs for human use, but increased use of supportive measures and of the recently developed antimalarial, atovaquone, particularly in combination with azithromycin, has improved the prospects for management of acute disease especially when caused by Babesia s.s. species. Prevention should be based primarily on increasing the awareness of physicians and the public to the risks, but infection from blood transfusions is particularly difficult to prevent. Expanding deer populations, resulting in wider distribution and greater abundance of ticks, heightened medical awareness, and growing numbers of immunocompromised patients are likely to result in a continuing rise of reported cases. PMID:21771506

  12. Species concepts and malaria parasites: detecting a cryptic species of Plasmodium.

    PubMed

    Perkins, S L

    2000-11-22

    Species of malaria parasite (phylum Apicomplexa: genus Plasmodium) have traditionally been described using the similarity species concept (based primarily on differences in morphological or life-history characteristics). The biological species concept (reproductive isolation) and phylogenetic species concept (based on monophyly) have not been used before in defining species of Plasmodium. Plasmodium azurophilum, described from Anolis lizards in the eastern Caribbean, is actually a two-species cryptic complex. The parasites were studied from eight islands, from Puerto Rico in the north to Grenada in the south. Morphology of the two species is very similar (differences are indistinguishable to the eye), but one infects only erythrocytes and the other only white blood cells. Molecular data for the cytochrome b gene reveal that the two forms are reproductively isolated; distinct haplotypes are present on each island and are never shared between the erythrocyte-infecting and leucocyte-infecting species. Each forms a monophyletic lineage indicating that they diverged before becoming established in the anoles of the eastern Caribbean. This comparison of the similarity, biological and phylogenetic species concepts for malaria parasites reveals the limited value of using only similarity measures in defining protozoan species. PMID:11413654

  13. Membrane contact sites between apicoplast and ER in Toxoplasma gondii revealed by electron tomography.

    PubMed

    Tomova, Cveta; Humbel, Bruno M; Geerts, Willie J C; Entzeroth, Rolf; Holthuis, Joost C M; Verkleij, Arie J

    2009-10-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular parasite from the phylum Apicomplexa. A hallmark of these protozoans is the presence of a unique apical complex of organelles that includes the apicoplast, a plastid acquired by secondary endosymbiosis. The apicoplast is indispensible for parasite viability. It harbours a fatty acid biosynthesis type II (FAS II) pathway and plays a key role in the parasite lipid metabolism. Possibly, the apicoplast provides components for the establishment and the maturation of the parasitophorous vacuole, ensuring the successful infection of the host cell. This implies the presence of a transport mechanism for fast and accurate allocation of lipids between the apicoplast and other membrane-bound compartments in the parasite cell. Using a combination of high-pressure freezing, freeze-substitution and electron tomography, we analysed the ultrastructural organization of the apicoplast of T. gondii in relation with the endoplasmic reticulum (ER). This allowed us to clearly show the presence of four continuous membranes surrounding the apicoplast. We present, for the first time, the existence of membrane contact sites between the apicoplast outermost membrane and the ER. We describe the morphological characteristics of these structures and discuss their potential significance for the subcellular distribution of lipids in the parasite. PMID:19602198

  14. Population, genetic, and antigenic diversity of the apicomplexan Eimeria tenella and their relevance to vaccine development

    PubMed Central

    Blake, Damer P.; Clark, Emily L.; Macdonald, Sarah E.; Thenmozhi, Venkatachalam; Kundu, Krishnendu; Garg, Rajat; Jatau, Isa D.; Ayoade, Simeon; Kawahara, Fumiya; Moftah, Abdalgader; Reid, Adam James; Adebambo, Ayotunde O.; Álvarez Zapata, Ramón; Srinivasa Rao, Arni S. R.; Thangaraj, Kumarasamy; Banerjee, Partha S.; Dhinakar-Raj, G.; Raman, M.; Tomley, Fiona M.

    2015-01-01

    The phylum Apicomplexa includes serious pathogens of humans and animals. Understanding the distribution and population structure of these protozoan parasites is of fundamental importance to explain disease epidemiology and develop sustainable controls. Predicting the likely efficacy and longevity of subunit vaccines in field populations relies on knowledge of relevant preexisting antigenic diversity, population structure, the likelihood of coinfection by genetically distinct strains, and the efficiency of cross-fertilization. All four of these factors have been investigated for Plasmodium species parasites, revealing both clonal and panmictic population structures with exceptional polymorphism associated with immunoprotective antigens such as apical membrane antigen 1 (AMA1). For the coccidian Toxoplasma gondii only genomic diversity and population structure have been defined in depth so far; for the closely related Eimeria species, all four variables are currently unknown. Using Eimeria tenella, a major cause of the enteric disease coccidiosis, which exerts a profound effect on chicken productivity and welfare, we determined population structure, genotype distribution, and likelihood of cross-fertilization during coinfection and also investigated the extent of naturally occurring antigenic diversity for the E. tenella AMA1 homolog. Using genome-wide Sequenom SNP-based haplotyping, targeted sequencing, and single-cell genotyping, we show that in this coccidian the functionality of EtAMA1 appears to outweigh immune evasion. This result is in direct contrast to the situation in Plasmodium and most likely is underpinned by the biology of the direct and acute coccidian life cycle in the definitive host. PMID:26354122

  15. Flavonoids Modulate the Proliferation of Neospora caninum in Glial Cell Primary Cultures

    PubMed Central

    Barbosa de Matos, Rosan; Braga-de-Souza, Suzana; Pena Seara Pitanga, Bruno; Amaral da Silva, Victor Diógenes; Viana de Jesus, Erica Etelvina; Morales Pinheiro, Alexandre; Dias Costa, Maria de Fátima; dos Santos El-Bacha, Ramon; de Oliveira Ribeiro, Cátia Suse

    2014-01-01

    Neospora caninum (Apicomplexa; Sarcocystidae) is a protozoan that causes abortion in cattle, horses, sheep, and dogs as well as neurological and dermatological diseases in dogs. In the central nervous system of dogs infected with N. caninum, cysts were detected that exhibited gliosis and meningitis. Flavonoids are polyphenolic compounds that exhibit antibacterial, antiparasitic, antifungal, and antiviral properties. In this study, we investigated the effects of flavonoids in a well-established in vitro model of N. caninum infection in glial cell cultures. Glial cells were treated individually with 10 different flavonoids, and a subset of cultures was also infected with the NC-1 strain of N. caninum. All of the flavonoids tested induced an increase in the metabolism of glial cells and many of them increased nitrite levels in cultures infected with NC-1 compared to controls and uninfected cultures. Among the flavonoids tested, 3',4'-dihydroxyflavone, 3',4',5,7-tetrahydroxyflavone (luteolin), and 3,3',4',5,6-pentahydroxyflavone (quercetin), also inhibited parasitophorous vacuole formation. Taken together, our findings show that flavonoids modulate glial cell responses, increase NO secretion, and interfere with N. caninum infection and proliferation. PMID:25548412

  16. Identification of bovine Neospora parasites by PCR amplification and specific small-subunit rRNA sequence probe hybridization.

    PubMed

    Ho, M S; Barr, B C; Marsh, A E; Anderson, M L; Rowe, J D; Tarantal, A F; Hendrickx, A G; Sverlow, K; Dubey, J P; Conrad, P A

    1996-05-01

    Neospora is a newly recognized genus of pathogenic coccidia, closely related to Toxoplasma gondii, that can cause abortion or congenital disease in a variety of domestic animal hosts. On the basis of the small-subunit rRNA gene sequences of Neospora spp. and other apicomplexa coccidia, oligonucleotide primers COC-1 and COC-2 were used for PCR amplification of conserved sequences of approximately 300 bp in size. A Neospora-specific chemiluminescent probe hybridized to Southern blots of amplification products from Neospora DNA but not to Southern blots with amplified DNA from the other coccidian parasites tested. A Toxoplasma-specific probe whose sequence differed from that of the probe for Neospora spp. by a single base pair was used to distinguish these parasites by specific Southern blot hybridization. The PCR system detected as few as one Neospora tachyzoite in the culture medium or five tachyzoites in samples of whole blood or amniotic fluid spiked with Neospora parasites. In addition, Neospora PCR products were successfully amplified from whole blood and amniotic fluid samples of experimentally infected bovine and rhesus macaque fetuses. These results indicate that this PCR and probe hybridization system could be a valuable adjunct to serology and immunohistochemistry for the diagnosis of Neospora infections in bovine or primate fetuses.

  17. Purine salvage in the apicomplexan Sarcocystis neurona, and generation of hypoxanthine-xanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase-deficient clones for positive-negative selection of transgenic parasites.

    PubMed

    Dangoudoubiyam, Sriveny; Zhang, Zijing; Howe, Daniel K

    2014-09-01

    Sarcocystis neurona is an apicomplexan parasite that causes severe neurological disease in horses and marine mammals. The Apicomplexa are all obligate intracellular parasites that lack purine biosynthesis pathways and rely on the host cell for their purine requirements. Hypoxanthine-xanthine-guanine phosphoribosyltransferase (HXGPRT) and adenosine kinase (AK) are key enzymes that function in two complementary purine salvage pathways in apicomplexans. Bioinformatic searches of the S. neurona genome revealed genes encoding HXGPRT, AK and all of the major purine salvage enzymes except purine nucleoside phosphorylase. Wild-type S. neurona were able to grow in the presence of mycophenolic acid (MPA) but were inhibited by 6-thioxanthine (6-TX), suggesting that the pathways involving either HXGPRT or AK are functional in this parasite. Prior work with Toxoplasma gondii demonstrated the utility of HXGPRT as a positive-negative selection marker. To enable the use of HXGPRT in S. neurona, the SnHXGPRT gene sequence was determined and a gene-targeting plasmid was transfected into S. neurona. SnHXGPRT-deficient mutants were selected with 6-TX, and single-cell clones were obtained. These Sn∆HXG parasites were susceptible to MPA and could be complemented using the heterologous T. gondii HXGPRT gene. In summary, S. neurona possesses both purine salvage pathways described in apicomplexans, thus allowing the use of HXGPRT as a positive-negative drug selection marker in this parasite.

  18. Mechanisms underlying the evolution and maintenance of functionally heterogeneous 18S rRNA genes in Apicomplexans.

    PubMed

    Rooney, Alejandro P

    2004-09-01

    In many species of the protist phylum Apicomplexa, ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene copies are structurally and functionally heterogeneous, owing to distinct requirements for rRNA-expression patterns at different developmental stages. The genomic mechanisms underlying the maintenance of this system over long-term evolutionary history are unclear. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate what processes underlie the long-term evolution of apicomplexan 18S genes in representative species. The results show that these genes evolve according to a birth-and-death model under strong purifying selection, thereby explaining how divergent 18S genes are generated over time while continuing to maintain their ability to produce fully functional rRNAs. In addition, it was found that Cryptosporidium parvum undergoes a rapid form of birth-and-death evolution that may facilitate host-specific adaptation, including that of type I and II strains found in humans. This represents the first case in which an rRNA gene family has been found to evolve under the birth-and-death model. PMID:15175411

  19. The katablepharids are a distant sister group of the Cryptophyta: A proposal for Katablepharidophyta divisio nova/ Kathablepharida phylum novum based on SSU rDNA and beta-tubulin phylogeny.

    PubMed

    Okamoto, Noriko; Inouye, Isao

    2005-08-01

    The katablepharids are a morphologically well-defined group of heterotrophic flagellates. Since their original description in 1939, they have been classified in the Cryptophyceae (Cryptophyta) based on their similar cell shape, flagellar orientation, and the presence of ejectisomes visible by light microscopy. However, electron microscopy suggests that the katablepharids are distinct from cryptomonads. A possible affinity with the Alveolata has been proposed which is mainly based on the resemblance of their feeding apparatus to the apical complex of the Apicomplexa or to the tentacles of the Ciliophora. In this study, we provide the first SSU rDNA and beta-tubulin molecular sequence data for two katablepharids: Katablepharis japonica sp. nov. and Leucocryptos marina. We reveal that the katablepharids are not closely related to the Alveolata; rather, phylogenetic reconstruction analyses of SSU rDNA and beta-tubulin suggest that the katablepharids are a distant sister group of the Cryptophyta. We therefore conclude that the katablepharids should be a group equivalent to the Cryptophyta and propose Katablepharidophyta divisio nova (ICBN)/Kathablepharida phylum novum (ICZN). PMID:16171184

  20. Gene transfer in the evolution of parasite nucleotide biosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Striepen, Boris; Pruijssers, Andrea J P; Huang, Jinling; Li, Catherine; Gubbels, Marc-Jan; Umejiego, Nwakaso N; Hedstrom, Lizbeth; Kissinger, Jessica C

    2004-03-01

    Nucleotide metabolic pathways provide numerous successful targets for antiparasitic chemotherapy, but the human pathogen Cryptosporidium parvum thus far has proved extraordinarily refractory to classical treatments. Given the importance of this protist as an opportunistic pathogen afflicting immunosuppressed individuals, effective treatments are urgently needed. The genome sequence of C. parvum is approaching completion, and we have used this resource to critically assess nucleotide biosynthesis as a target in C. parvum. Genomic analysis indicates that this parasite is entirely dependent on salvage from the host for its purines and pyrimidines. Metabolic pathway reconstruction and experimental validation in the laboratory further suggest that the loss of pyrimidine de novo synthesis is compensated for by possession of three salvage enzymes. Two of these, uridine kinase-uracil phosphoribosyltransferase and thymidine kinase, are unique to C. parvum within the phylum Apicomplexa. Phylogenetic analysis suggests horizontal gene transfer of thymidine kinase from a proteobacterium. We further show that the purine metabolism in C. parvum follows a highly streamlined pathway. Salvage of adenosine provides C. parvum's sole source of purines. This renders the parasite susceptible to inhibition of inosine monophosphate dehydrogenase, the rate-limiting enzyme in the multistep conversion of AMP to GMP. The inosine 5' monophosphate dehydrogenase inhibitors ribavirin and mycophenolic acid, which are already in clinical use, show pronounced anticryptosporidial activity. Taken together, these data help to explain why widely used drugs fail in the treatment of cryptosporidiosis and suggest more promising targets. PMID:14973196

  1. Composite genome map and recombination parameters derived from three archetypal lineages of Toxoplasma gondii

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Asis; Taylor, Sonya; Su, Chunlei; Mackey, Aaron J.; Boyle, Jon; Cole, Robert; Glover, Darius; Tang, Keliang; Paulsen, Ian T.; Berriman, Matt; Boothroyd, John C.; Pfefferkorn, Elmer R.; Dubey, J. P.; Ajioka, James W.; Roos, David S.; Wootton, John C.; Sibley, L. David

    2005-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is a highly successful protozoan parasite in the phylum Apicomplexa, which contains numerous animal and human pathogens. T.gondii is amenable to cellular, biochemical, molecular and genetic studies, making it a model for the biology of this important group of parasites. To facilitate forward genetic analysis, we have developed a high-resolution genetic linkage map for T.gondii. The genetic map was used to assemble the scaffolds from a 10X shotgun whole genome sequence, thus defining 14 chromosomes with markers spaced at ∼300 kb intervals across the genome. Fourteen chromosomes were identified comprising a total genetic size of ∼592 cM and an average map unit of ∼104 kb/cM. Analysis of the genetic parameters in T.gondii revealed a high frequency of closely adjacent, apparent double crossover events that may represent gene conversions. In addition, we detected large regions of genetic homogeneity among the archetypal clonal lineages, reflecting the relatively few genetic outbreeding events that have occurred since their recent origin. Despite these unusual features, linkage analysis proved to be effective in mapping the loci determining several drug resistances. The resulting genome map provides a framework for analysis of complex traits such as virulence and transmission, and for comparative population genetic studies. PMID:15911631

  2. Evidence of Taxa-, Clone-, and Kin-discrimination in Protists: Ecological and Evolutionary Implications

    PubMed Central

    Espinosa, Avelina; Paz-y-Miño-C, Guillermo

    2014-01-01

    Unicellular eukaryotes, or protists, are among the most ancient organisms on Earth. Protists belong to multiple taxonomic groups; they are widely distributed geographically and in all environments. Their ability to discriminate among con- and heterospecifics has been documented during the past decade. Here we discuss exemplar cases of taxa-, clone-, and possible kin-discrimination in five major lineages: Mycetozoa (Dictyostelium, Polysphondylium), Dikarya (Saccharomyces), Ciliophora (Tetrahymena), Apicomplexa (Plasmodium) and Archamoebae (Entamoeba). We summarize the proposed genetic mechanisms involved in discrimination-mediated aggregation (self versus different), including the csA, FLO and trg (formerly lag) genes, and the Proliferation Activation Factors (PAFs), which facilitate clustering in some protistan taxa. We caution about the experimental challenges intrinsic to studying recognition in protists, and highlight the opportunities for exploring the ecology and evolution of complex forms of cell-cell communication, including social behavior, in a polyphyletic, still superficially understood group of organisms. Because unicellular eukaryotes are the evolutionary precursors of multicellular life, we infer that their mechanisms of taxa-, clone-, and possible kin-discrimination gave origin to the complex diversification and sophistication of traits associated with species and kin recognition in plants, fungi, invertebrates and vertebrates. PMID:25400313

  3. The crustacean parasites Ellobiopsis Caullery, 1910 and Thalassomyces Niezabitowski, 1913 form a monophyletic divergent clade within the Alveolata.

    PubMed

    Gómez, Fernando; López-García, Purificación; Nowaczyk, Antoine; Moreira, David

    2009-09-01

    The Ellobiopsidae are enigmatic parasites of crustaceans that have been grouped together exclusively on the basis of morphological similarities. Ultrastructural studies have revealed their affiliation within the alveolates, which was confirmed by the phylogenetic analysis of the ribosomal RNA gene (SSU rDNA) sequences of two species of Thalassomyces Niezabitowski, 1913. However, their precise systematic position within this group remains unresolved, since they could not be definitively allied with any particular alveolate group. To better determine the systematic position of ellobiopsids by molecular phylogeny, we sequenced the SSU rDNA from the type-species of the Ellobiopsidae, Ellobiopsis chattoni Caullery, 1910. We found E. chattoni infecting various copepod hosts, Acartia clausi Giesbrecht, Centropages typicus Kröyer and Clausocalanus sp., in the Bay of Marseille, NW Mediterranean Sea, which allowed us to study several stages of the parasite development. A single unicellular multinucleate specimen provided two different sequences of the SSU rDNA gene, indicating the existence of polymorphism at this locus within single individuals. Ellobiopsis Caullery, 1910 and Thalassomyces formed a very divergent and well-supported clade in phylogenetic analyses. This clade appears to be more closely related to the dinoflagellates (including the Syndiniales/Marine Alveolate Group II and the Dinokaryota) and Marine Alveolate Group I than to the other alveolates (Ciliophora, Perkinsozoa and Apicomplexa).

  4. Secretion of Antonospora (Paranosema) locustae Proteins into Infected Cells Suggests an Active Role of Microsporidia in the Control of Host Programs and Metabolic Processes

    PubMed Central

    Senderskiy, Igor V.; Timofeev, Sergey A.; Seliverstova, Elena V.; Pavlova, Olga A.; Dolgikh, Viacheslav V.

    2014-01-01

    Molecular tools of the intracellular protozoan pathogens Apicomplexa and Kinetoplastida for manipulation of host cell machinery have been the focus of investigation for approximately two decades. Microsporidia, fungi-related microorganisms forming another large group of obligate intracellular parasites, are characterized by development in direct contact with host cytoplasm (the majority of species), strong minimization of cell machinery, and acquisition of unique transporters to exploit host metabolic system. All the aforementioned features are suggestive of the ability of microsporidia to modify host metabolic and regulatory pathways. Seven proteins of the microsporidium Antonospora (Paranosema) locustae with predicted signal peptides but without transmembrane domains were overexpressed in Escherichia coli. Western-blot analysis with antibodies against recombinant products showed secretion of parasite proteins from different functional categories into the infected host cell. Secretion of parasite hexokinase and α/β-hydrolase was confirmed by immunofluorescence microscopy. In addition, this method showed specific accumulation of A. locustae hexokinase in host nuclei. Expression of hexokinase, trehalase, and two leucine-rich repeat proteins without any exogenous signal peptide led to their secretion in the yeast Pichia pastoris. In contrast, α/β-hydrolase was not found in the culture medium, though a significant amount of this enzyme accumulated in the yeast membrane fraction. These results suggest that microsporidia possess a broad set of enzymes and regulatory proteins secreted into infected cells to control host metabolic processes and molecular programs. PMID:24705470

  5. Herbal formulations as feed additives in the course of rabbit subclinical coccidiosis.

    PubMed

    Nosal, Paweł; Kowalska, Dorota; Bielański, Paweł; Kowal, Jerzy; Kornaś, Sławomir

    2014-01-01

    Two simultaneous experiments were carried out in a breeding farm of New Zealand White rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus f. domesticus) to determine the feasibility of replacing coccidiostats with garlic and oregano preparation. The research took place during June and July, the period of the greatest threat of coccidiosis caused by Eimeria spp. (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae). In one investigation, 40 rabbits aged 1-3 months were divided into four groups of ten animals: Group A being a control which received no coccidiostats in feed, Group B receiving the coccidiostat Baycox in water once at weaning, Group C receiving the coccidiostat robenidine in feed, and group D receiving herbal extracts in feed. In the second trial, six mated females were allocated equally to three groups analogous to A, C, and D above during pregnancy and lactation. Bulk stool samples were collected from each group of rabbits at weekly intervals for coproscopic analysis, and the production results of the animals were recorded. In the young rabbits, both the faecal coccidia oocyst counts and body weight gains were more favourable in group D than the remaining groups. Also, the female rabbits of group D were the least infected. The results demonstrate that garlic and oregano feed additives exert a positive influence on the level and course of coccidia infection, with regard to maintaining a good level of animal productivity, and these herbal extracts appear to have potential value in coccidiosis prophylaxy. PMID:24930248

  6. Structural and functional dissection of Toxoplasma gondii armadillo repeats only protein.

    PubMed

    Mueller, Christina; Samoo, Atta; Hammoudi, Pierre-Mehdi; Klages, Natacha; Kallio, Juha Pekka; Kursula, Inari; Soldati-Favre, Dominique

    2016-03-01

    Rhoptries are club-shaped, regulated secretory organelles that cluster at the apical pole of apicomplexan parasites. Their discharge is essential for invasion and the establishment of an intracellular lifestyle. Little is known about rhoptry biogenesis and recycling during parasite division. In Toxoplasma gondii, positioning of rhoptries involves the armadillo repeats only protein (ARO) and myosin F (MyoF). Here, we show that two ARO partners, ARO-interacting protein (AIP) and adenylate cyclase β (ACβ) localize to a rhoptry subcompartment. In absence of AIP, ACβ disappears from the rhoptries. By assessing the contribution of each ARO armadillo (ARM) repeat, we provide evidence that ARO is multifunctional, participating not only in positioning but also in clustering of rhoptries. Structural analyses show that ARO resembles the myosin-binding domain of the Caenorhabditis elegans myosin chaperone UNC-45. A conserved patch of aromatic and acidic residues denotes the putative MyoF-binding site, and the overall arrangement of the ARM repeats explains the dramatic consequences of deleting each of them. Finally, Plasmodium falciparum ARO functionally complements ARO depletion and interacts with the same partners, highlighting the conservation of rhoptry biogenesis in Apicomplexa. PMID:26769898

  7. Species formation by host shifting in avian malaria parasites.

    PubMed

    Ricklefs, Robert E; Outlaw, Diana C; Svensson-Coelho, Maria; Medeiros, Matthew C I; Ellis, Vincenzo A; Latta, Steven

    2014-10-14

    The malaria parasites (Apicomplexa: Haemosporida) of birds are believed to have diversified across the avian host phylogeny well after the origin of most major host lineages. Although many symbionts with direct transmission codiversify with their hosts, mechanisms of species formation in vector-borne parasites, including the role of host shifting, are poorly understood. Here, we examine the hosts of sister lineages in a phylogeny of 181 putative species of malaria parasites of New World terrestrial birds to determine the role of shifts between host taxa in the formation of new parasite species. We find that host shifting, often across host genera and families, is the rule. Sympatric speciation by host shifting would require local reproductive isolation as a prerequisite to divergent selection, but this mechanism is not supported by the generalized host-biting behavior of most vectors of avian malaria parasites. Instead, the geographic distribution of individual parasite lineages in diverse hosts suggests that species formation is predominantly allopatric and involves host expansion followed by local host-pathogen coevolution and secondary sympatry, resulting in local shifting of parasite lineages across hosts.

  8. Theileria parasites secrete a prolyl isomerase to maintain host leukocyte transformation

    PubMed Central

    Marsolier, J.; Perichon, M.; DeBarry, JD.; Villoutreix, BO.; Chluba, J.; Lopez, T.; Garrido, C.; Zhou, XZ.; Lu, KP.; Fritsch, L.; Ait-Si-Ali, S.; Mhadhbi, M; Medjkane, S.; Weitzman, JB.

    2014-01-01

    Infectious agents develop intricate mechanisms to interact with host cell pathways and hijack the genetic and epigenetic machinery to change phenotypic states. Amongst the Apicomplexa phylum of obligate intracellular parasites which cause veterinary and human diseases, Theileria is the only genus which transforms its mammalian host cells1. Theileria infection of bovine leukocytes induces proliferative and invasive phenotypes associated with activated signalling pathways, notably JNK and AP-12. The transformed phenotypes are reversed by treatment with the theilericidal drug Buparvaquone3. We used comparative genomics to identify a homologue of the Peptidyl Prolyl Isomerase Pin1 (designated TaPin1) in T. annulata which is secreted into the host cell and modulates oncogenic signalling pathways. Here we show that TaPin1 is a bona fide prolyl isomerase and that it interacts with the host ubiquitin ligase FBW7 leading to its degradation and subsequent stabilization of c-Jun which promotes transformation. We performed in vitro analysis and in vivo zebrafish xenograft experiments to demonstrate that TaPin1 is directly inhibited by the anti-parasite drug Buparvaquone (and other known Pin1 inhibitors) and is mutated in a drug-resistant strain. Prolyl isomerisation is thus a conserved mechanism which is important in cancer and is used by Theileria parasites to manipulate host oncogenic signaling. PMID:25624101

  9. Identification and characterization of Toxoplasma SIP, a conserved apicomplexan cytoskeleton protein involved in maintaining the shape, motility and virulence of the parasite

    PubMed Central

    Lentini, Gaelle; Kong-Hap, Marie; El Hajj, Hiba; Francia, Maria; Claudet, Cyrille; Striepen, Boris; Dubremetz, Jean-François; Lebrun, Maryse

    2015-01-01

    Summary Apicomplexa possess a complex pellicle that is composed of a plasma membrane and a closely apposed inner membrane complex (IMC) that serves as a support for the actin-myosin motor required for motility and host cell invasion. The IMC consists of longitudinal plates of flattened vesicles, fused together and lined on the cytoplasmic side by a subpellicular network of intermediate filament-like proteins. The spatial organization of the IMC has been well described by electron microscopy, but its composition and molecular organization is largely unknown. Here, we identify a novel protein of the IMC cytoskeletal network in Toxoplasma gondii, called TgSIP, and conserved among apicomplexan parasites. To finely pinpoint the localization of TgSIP, we used structured illumination super resolution microscopy and revealed that it likely decorates the transverse sutures of the plates and the basal end of the IMC. This suggests that TgSIP might contribute to the organization or physical connection among the different components of the IMC. We generated a T. gondii SIP deletion mutant and showed that parasites lacking TgSIP are significantly shorter than wild-type parasites and show defects in gliding motility, invasion and reduced infectivity in mice. PMID:25088010

  10. Characterization of the Chloroquine Resistance Transporter Homologue in Toxoplasma gondii

    PubMed Central

    Warring, Sally D.; Dou, Zhicheng; Carruthers, Vern B.; McFadden, Geoffrey I.

    2014-01-01

    Mutations in the Plasmodium falciparum chloroquine resistance transporter (PfCRT) protein confer resistance to the antimalarial drug chloroquine. PfCRT localizes to the parasite digestive vacuole, the site of chloroquine action, where it mediates resistance by transporting chloroquine out of the digestive vacuole. PfCRT belongs to a family of transporter proteins called the chloroquine resistance transporter family. CRT family proteins are found throughout the Apicomplexa, in some protists, and in plants. Despite the importance of PfCRT in drug resistance, little is known about the evolution or native function of CRT proteins. The apicomplexan parasite Toxoplasma gondii contains one CRT family protein. We demonstrate that T. gondii CRT (TgCRT) colocalizes with markers for the vacuolar (VAC) compartment in these parasites. The TgCRT-containing VAC is a highly dynamic organelle, changing its morphology and protein composition between intracellular and extracellular forms of the parasite. Regulated knockdown of TgCRT expression resulted in modest reduction in parasite fitness and swelling of the VAC, indicating that TgCRT contributes to parasite growth and VAC physiology. Together, our findings provide new information on the role of CRT family proteins in apicomplexan parasites. PMID:24859994

  11. Detection of Babesia divergens in southern Norway by using an immunofluorescence antibody test in cow sera

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background The incidence of bovine babesiosis, caused by Babesia divergens (Apicomplexa: Piroplasmida) has decreased markedly since the 1930 s, but may re-emerge as a consequence of climate change and changes in legislation and pasturing practices. This is a potentially serious disease, with both economical and animal welfare consequences. Therefore, there is a need to survey the distribution of B. divergens. Methods We tested sera from 306 healthy pastured cows from 24 farms along the southern Norwegian coast by using an indirect immunofluorescence IgG antibody test (IFAT). Fractions of seropositive cows were compared by calculating 95% CI. Results The results of this test showed that 27% of the sera were positive for B. divergens antibodies. The fraction of antibody-positive sera that we detected showed a two-humped distribution, with a high fraction of positives being found in municipalities in the western and eastern parts of the study area, while the municipalities between these areas had few or no positive serum samples. Conclusions Neither the farmers' observations nor the Norwegian Dairy Herd Recording System give an adequate picture of the distribution of bovine babesiosis. Serological testing of cows by using IFAT is a convenient way of screening for the presence of B. divergens in an area. PMID:20925923

  12. A small mitochondrial protein present in myzozoans is essential for malaria transmission

    PubMed Central

    Klug, Dennis; Mair, Gunnar R.; Frischknecht, Friedrich; Douglas, Ross G.

    2016-01-01

    Myzozoans (which include dinoflagellates, chromerids and apicomplexans) display notable divergence from their ciliate sister group, including a reduced mitochondrial genome and divergent metabolic processes. The factors contributing to these divergent processes are still poorly understood and could serve as potential drug targets in disease-causing protists. Here, we report the identification and characterization of a small mitochondrial protein from the rodent-infecting apicomplexan parasite Plasmodium berghei that is essential for development in its mosquito host. Parasites lacking the gene mitochondrial protein ookinete developmental defect (mpodd) showed malformed parasites that were unable to transmit to mosquitoes. Knockout parasites displayed reduced mitochondrial mass without affecting organelle integrity, indicating no role of the protein in mitochondrial biogenesis or morphology maintenance but a likely role in mitochondrial import or metabolism. Using genetic complementation experiments, we identified a previously unrecognized Plasmodium falciparum homologue that can rescue the mpodd(−) phenotype, thereby showing that the gene is functionally conserved. As far as can be detected, mpodd is found in myzozoans, has homologues in the phylum Apicomplexa and appears to have arisen in free-living dinoflagellates. This suggests that the MPODD protein has a conserved mitochondrial role that is important for myzozoans. While previous studies identified a number of essential proteins which are generally highly conserved evolutionarily, our study identifies, for the first time, a non-canonical protein fulfilling a crucial function in the mitochondrion during parasite transmission. PMID:27053680

  13. Molecular characterization of Babesia vogeli in dogs from Belém, northern Brazil.

    PubMed

    Moraes, P H G; Rufino, C P; Baraúna, A R F; Reis, T; Agnol, L T D; Meneses, A M C; Aguiar, D C F; Nunes, M R T; Gonçalves, E C

    2015-01-01

    Babesiosis is an infectious hemolytic disease that occurs worldwide, and is caused by a protozoan of the Babesia genus (Apicomplexa). Little is known about this genus; therefore, this study conducted a molecular characterization of Babesia spp in naturally infected dogs in northern Brazil. Blood samples were collected from 172 dogs from metropolitan Belém, and screened for Babesia spp using semi-nested polymerase chain reactions. Subsequently, 18S rDNA gene fragments were amplified and sequenced. Alignments of the 27 nucleotide sequences returned fragments measuring 1023 bp in size, which did not include any polymorphic sites (100% identity). This genotype was very similar to the 18S rDNA gene in B. vogeli. This study provides an important molecular characterization of the parasite responsible for canine babesiosis in naturally infected dogs in metropolitan Belém. In addition, the 18S rDNA gene in B. vogeli may represent the most common genotype occurring in South America. PMID:26662431

  14. Chromerid genomes reveal the evolutionary path from photosynthetic algae to obligate intracellular parasites.

    PubMed

    Woo, Yong H; Ansari, Hifzur; Otto, Thomas D; Klinger, Christen M; Kolisko, Martin; Michálek, Jan; Saxena, Alka; Shanmugam, Dhanasekaran; Tayyrov, Annageldi; Veluchamy, Alaguraj; Ali, Shahjahan; Bernal, Axel; del Campo, Javier; Cihlář, Jaromír; Flegontov, Pavel; Gornik, Sebastian G; Hajdušková, Eva; Horák, Aleš; Janouškovec, Jan; Katris, Nicholas J; Mast, Fred D; Miranda-Saavedra, Diego; Mourier, Tobias; Naeem, Raeece; Nair, Mridul; Panigrahi, Aswini K; Rawlings, Neil D; Padron-Regalado, Eriko; Ramaprasad, Abhinay; Samad, Nadira; Tomčala, Aleš; Wilkes, Jon; Neafsey, Daniel E; Doerig, Christian; Bowler, Chris; Keeling, Patrick J; Roos, David S; Dacks, Joel B; Templeton, Thomas J; Waller, Ross F; Lukeš, Julius; Oborník, Miroslav; Pain, Arnab

    2015-01-01

    The eukaryotic phylum Apicomplexa encompasses thousands of obligate intracellular parasites of humans and animals with immense socio-economic and health impacts. We sequenced nuclear genomes of Chromera velia and Vitrella brassicaformis, free-living non-parasitic photosynthetic algae closely related to apicomplexans. Proteins from key metabolic pathways and from the endomembrane trafficking systems associated with a free-living lifestyle have been progressively and non-randomly lost during adaptation to parasitism. The free-living ancestor contained a broad repertoire of genes many of which were repurposed for parasitic processes, such as extracellular proteins, components of a motility apparatus, and DNA- and RNA-binding protein families. Based on transcriptome analyses across 36 environmental conditions, Chromera orthologs of apicomplexan invasion-related motility genes were co-regulated with genes encoding the flagellar apparatus, supporting the functional contribution of flagella to the evolution of invasion machinery. This study provides insights into how obligate parasites with diverse life strategies arose from a once free-living phototrophic marine alga. PMID:26175406

  15. Prevalence of protozoa species in drinking and environmental water sources in Sudan.

    PubMed

    Shanan, Salah; Abd, Hadi; Bayoumi, Magdi; Saeed, Amir; Sandström, Gunnar

    2015-01-01

    Protozoa are eukaryotic cells distributed worldwide in nature and are receiving increasing attention as reservoirs and potential vectors for the transmission of pathogenic bacteria. In the environment, on the other hand, many genera of the protozoa are human and animal pathogens. Only limited information is available on these organisms in developing countries and so far no information on their presence is available from Sudan. It is necessary to establish a molecular identification of species of the protozoa from drinking and environmental water. 600 water samples were collected from five states (Gadarif, Khartoum, Kordofan, Juba, and Wad Madani) in Sudan and analysed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and sequencing. 57 out of 600 water samples were PCR positive for protozoa. 38 out of the 57 positive samples were identified by sequencing to contain 66 protozoa species including 19 (28.8%) amoebae, 17 (25.7%) Apicomplexa, 25 (37.9%) ciliates, and 5 (7.6%) flagellates. This study utilized molecular methods identified species belonging to all phyla of protozoa and presented a fast and accurate molecular detection and identification of pathogenic as well as free-living protozoa in water uncovering hazards facing public health.

  16. CenH3 evolution reflects meiotic symmetry as predicted by the centromere drive model

    PubMed Central

    Zedek, František; Bureš, Petr

    2016-01-01

    The centromere drive model explaining rapid evolution of eukaryotic centromeres predicts higher frequency of positive selection acting on centromeric histone H3 (CenH3) in clades with asymmetric meiosis compared to the clades with only symmetric meiosis. However, despite the impression one might get from the literature, this key prediction of the centromere drive model has not only never been confirmed, but it has never been tested, because all the previous studies dealt only with the presence or absence instead of the frequency of positive selection. To provide evidence for or against different frequencies of positively selected CenH3 in asymmetrics and symmetrics, we have inferred the selective pressures acting on CenH3 in seventeen eukaryotic clades, including plants, animals, fungi, ciliates and apicomplexa, using codon-substitution models, and compared the inferred frequencies between asymmetrics and symmetrics in a quantitative manner. We have found that CenH3 has been evolving adaptively much more frequently in clades with asymmetric meiosis compared with clades displaying only symmetric meiosis which confirms the prediction of centromere drive model. Our findings indicate that the evolution of asymmetric meiosis required CenH3 to evolve adaptively more often to counterbalance the negative consequences of centromere drive. PMID:27629066

  17. Cryptosporidiosis and Cryptosporidium species in animals and humans: a thirty colour rainbow?

    PubMed

    Šlapeta, Jan

    2013-11-01

    Parasites of the genus Cryptosporidium (Apicomplexa) cause cryptosporidiosis in humans and animals worldwide. The species names used for Cryptosporidium spp. are confusing for parasitologists and even more so for non-specialists. Here, 30 named species of the genus Cryptosporidium are reviewed and proposed as valid. Molecular and experimental evidence suggests that humans and cattle are the hosts for 14 and 13 out of 30 named species, respectively. Two, four and eight named species are considered of major, moderate and minor public health significance, respectively. There are at least nine named species that are shared between humans and cattle. The aim of this review is to outline available species information together with the most commonly used genetic markers enabling the identification of named Cryptosporidium spp. Currently, 28 of 30 named species can be identified using the complete or partial ssrRNA, serving as a retrospective 'barcode'. Currently, the ssrRNA satisfies the implicit assumption that the reference databases used for comparison are sufficiently complete and applicable across the whole genus. However, due to unreliable annotation in public DNA repositories, the reference nucleotide entries and alignment of named Cryptosporidium spp. has been compiled. Despite its known limitations, ssrRNA remains the optimal marker for species identification.

  18. Cloning and analysis of a Toxoplasma gondii histone acetyltransferase: a novel chromatin remodelling factor in Apicomplexan parasites.

    PubMed

    Hettmann, C; Soldati, D

    1999-11-15

    The yeast transcriptional adaptor GCN5 functions as a histone acetyltransferase, directly linking chromatin modification to transcriptional regulation. Homologues of yeast GCN5 have been found in Tetrahymena, Drosophila, Arabidopsis and human, suggesting that this pathway of chromatin remodelling is evolutionarily conserved. Consistent with this view, we have identified the Toxoplasma gondii homologue, referred to here as TgGCN5. The gene codes for a protein of 474 amino acids with an estimated molecular mass of 53 kDa. The protein reveals two regions of close similarity with the GCN5 family members, the HAT domain and the bromodomain. Tg GCN5 occurs in a single copy in the T.gondii genome. The introduction of a second copy of TgGCN5 in T.gondii tachyzoites is toxic unless the HAT activity is disrupted by a single point mutation. Full TgGCN5 does not complement the growth defect in a yeast gcn5 (-)mutant strain, but a chimera comprising the T.gondii HAT domain fused to the remainder of yGCN5 does. These data show that T.gondii GNC5 is a histone acetyltransferase attesting to the significance of chromatin remodelling in gene regulation of Apicomplexa.

  19. Comparison of Protective Immune Responses to Apicomplexan Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Frölich, Sonja; Entzeroth, Rolf; Wallach, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Members of the phylum Apicomplexa, which includes the species Plasmodium, Eimeria, Toxoplasma, and Babesia amongst others, are the most successful intracellular pathogens known to humankind. The widespread acquisition of antimicrobial resistance to most drugs used to date has sparked a great deal of research and commercial interest in the development of vaccines as alternative control strategies. A few antigens from the asexual and sexual stages of apicomplexan development have been identified and their genes characterised; however, the fine cellular and molecular details of the effector mechanisms crucial for parasite inhibition and stimulation of protective immunity are still not entirely understood. This paper provides an overview of what is currently known about the protective immune response against the various types of apicomplexan parasites and focuses mainly on the similarities of these pathogens and their host interaction. Finally, the evolutionary relationships of these parasites and their hosts, as well as the modulation of immune functions that are critical in determining the outcome of the infection by these pathogenic organisms, are discussed. PMID:21876783

  20. Phylogenetic relationship of Hepatozoon blood parasites found in snakes from Africa, America and Asia.

    PubMed

    Haklová, B; Majláthová, V; Majláth, I; Harris, D J; Petrilla, V; Litschka-Koen, T; Oros, M; Peťko, B

    2014-03-01

    The blood parasites from the genus Hepatozoon Miller, 1908 (Apicomplexa: Adeleida: Hepatozoidae) represent the most common intracellular protozoan parasites found in snakes. In the present study, we examined 209 individuals of snakes, from different zoogeographical regions (Africa, America, Asia and Europe), for the occurrence of blood parasites using both molecular and microscopic examination methods, and assess phylogenetic relationships of all Hepatozoon parasites from snakes for the first time. In total, 178 blood smears obtained from 209 individuals, representing 40 species, were examined, from which Hepatozoon unicellular parasites were found in 26 samples (14·6% prevalence). Out of 180 samples tested by molecular method polymerase chain reaction (PCR), the presence of parasites was observed in 21 individuals (prevalence 11·6%): 14 snakes from Africa belonging to six genera (Dendroaspis, Dispholidus, Mehelya, Naja, Philothamnus and Python), five snakes from Asia from the genus Morelia and two snakes from America, from two genera (Coluber and Corallus). The intensity of infection varied from one to 1433 infected cells per 10 000 erythrocytes. Results of phylogenetic analyses (Bayesian and Maximum Likelihood) revealed the existence of five haplotypes divided into four main lineages. The present data also indicate neither geographical pattern of studied Hepatozoon sp., nor congruency in the host association.

  1. IDENTIFICATION OF TWO NOVEL COCCIDIAN SPECIES SHED BY CALIFORNIA SEA LIONS (ZALOPHUS CALIFORNIANUS)

    PubMed Central

    Carlson-Bremer, Daphne; Johnson, Christine K.; Miller, Robin H.; Gulland, Frances M. D.; Conrad, Patricia A.; Wasmuth, James D.; Colegrove, Kathleen M.

    2016-01-01

    Routine fecal examination revealed novel coccidian oocysts in asymptomatic California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) in a rehabilitation facility. Coccidian oocysts were observed in fecal samples collected from 15 of 410 California sea lions admitted to The Marine Mammal Center between April 2007 and October 2009. Phylogenetic analysis using the full ITS-1 region, partial small subunit 18S rDNA sequence, and the Apicomplexa rpoB region identified 2 distinct sequence clades, referred to as Coccidia A and Coccidia B, and placed them in the Sarcocystidae, grouped with the tissue-cyst–forming coccidia. Both sequence clades resolved as individual taxa at ITS-1 and rpoB and were most closely related to Neospora caninum. Coccidia A was identified in 11 and Coccidia B in 4 of 12 sea lion oocyst samples successfully sequenced (3 of those sea lions were co-infected with both parasites). Shedding of Coccidia A oocysts was not associated with age class, sex, or stranding location, but yearlings represented the majority of shedders (8/15). This is the first study to use molecular phylogenetics to identify and describe coccidian parasites shed by a marine mammal. PMID:22091999

  2. Identification of two novel coccidian species shed by California sea lions (Zalophus californianus).

    PubMed

    Carlson-Bremer, Daphne; Johnson, Christine K; Miller, Robin H; Gulland, Frances M D; Conrad, Patricia A; Wasmuth, James D; Colegrove, Kathleen M; Grigg, Michael E

    2012-04-01

    Routine fecal examination revealed novel coccidian oocysts in asymptomatic California sea lions (Zalophus californianus) in a rehabilitation facility. Coccidian oocysts were observed in fecal samples collected from 15 of 410 California sea lions admitted to The Marine Mammal Center between April 2007 and October 2009. Phylogenetic analysis using the full ITS-1 region, partial small subunit 18S rDNA sequence, and the Apicomplexa rpoB region identified 2 distinct sequence clades, referred to as Coccidia A and Coccidia B, and placed them in the Sarcocystidae, grouped with the tissue-cyst-forming coccidia. Both sequence clades resolved as individual taxa at ITS-1 and rpoB and were most closely related to Neospora caninum. Coccidia A was identified in 11 and Coccidia B in 4 of 12 sea lion oocyst samples successfully sequenced (3 of those sea lions were co-infected with both parasites). Shedding of Coccidia A oocysts was not associated with age class, sex, or stranding location, but yearlings represented the majority of shedders (8/15). This is the first study to use molecular phylogenetics to identify and describe coccidian parasites shed by a marine mammal. PMID:22091999

  3. Characterization of a novel organelle in Toxoplasma gondii with similar composition and function to the plant vacuole

    PubMed Central

    Miranda, Kildare; Pace, Douglas A.; Cintron, Roxana; Rodrigues, Juliany C.F.; Fang, Jianmin; Smith, Alyssa; Rohloff, Peter; Coelho, Elvis; de Haas, Felix; de Souza, Wanderley; Coppens, Isabelle; Sibley, L. David; Moreno, Silvia N. J.

    2010-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii belongs to the phylum Apicomplexa and is an important cause of congenital disease and infection in immunocompromised patients. Like most apicomplexans, Toxoplasma gondii possesses several plant-like features, such as the chloroplast-like organelle, the apicoplast. We describe and characterize a novel organelle in T. gondii tachyzoites, which is visible by light microscopy, and possesses a broad similarity to the plant vacuole. Electron tomography shows the interaction of this vacuole with other organelles. The presence of a plant-like vacuolar proton pyrophosphatase (TgVP1), a vacuolar proton ATPase, a cathepsin L-like protease (TgCPL), an aquaporin (TgAQP1), as well as Ca2+/H+ and Na+/H+ exchange activities, supports similarity to the plant vacuole. Biochemical characterization of TgVP1 in enriched fractions shows a functional similarity to the respective plant enzyme. The organelle is a Ca2+ store and appears to have protective effects against salt stress potentially linked to its sodium transport activity. In intracellular parasites, the organelle fragments, with some markers co-localizing with the late endosomal marker, Rab7, suggesting its involvement with the endocytic pathway. Studies on the characterization of this novel organelle will be relevant to the identification of novel targets for chemotherapy against T. gondii and other apicomplexan parasites as well. PMID:20398214

  4. First Molecular Characterization of Theileria ornithorhynchi Mackerras, 1959: yet Another Challenge to the Systematics of the Piroplasms.

    PubMed

    Paparini, Andrea; Macgregor, James; Ryan, Una M; Irwin, Peter J

    2015-12-01

    Piroplasms, tick-transmitted Apicomplexa of the genera Theileria, Babesia and Cytauxzoon, are blood-borne parasites of clinical and veterinary importance. The order Piroplasmida shows a puzzling systematics characterized by multiple clades, soft polytomies and paraphyletic/polyphyletic genera. In the present study, screening of platypuses (Ornithorhynchus anatinus), was performed to infer the parasite molecular phylogeny. DNA was extracted from blood, ectoparasites and tick eggs and the 18S rRNA- hsp70-genes were used for the phylogenetic reconstructions. Microscopic analyses detected pleomorphic intra-erythrocytic organisms and tetrads consistent with previous descriptions of Theileria ornithorhynchi Mackerras, 1959, but observation of possible schizonts could not be confirmed. DNA sequences obtained from blood and ticks allowed resolving the systematics of the first piroplasm infecting a monotreme host. Molecularly, T. ornithorhynchi formed a novel monophyletic group, basal to most known piroplasms' clades. The ancestral position of this clade, isolated from an ancient lineage of mammalian host appears particularly fascinating. The present paper discusses the inadequacies of the current molecular systematics for the Piroplasmida and the consequences of incomplete sampling, morphology-based classification and ambiguous microscopic identifications. Likely when the current sampling bias is rectified and more sequence data is made available, the phylogenetic position of T. ornithorhynchi will be further contextualized without ambiguity.

  5. Unconventional endosome-like compartment and retromer complex in Toxoplasma gondii govern parasite integrity and host infection

    PubMed Central

    Sangaré, Lamba Omar; Alayi, Tchilabalo Dilezitoko; Westermann, Benoit; Hovasse, Agnes; Sindikubwabo, Fabien; Callebaut, Isabelle; Werkmeister, Elisabeth; Lafont, Frank; Slomianny, Christian; Hakimi, Mohamed-Ali; Van Dorsselaer, Alain; Schaeffer-Reiss, Christine; Tomavo, Stanislas

    2016-01-01

    Membrane trafficking pathways play critical roles in Apicomplexa, a phylum of protozoan parasites that cause life-threatening diseases worldwide. Here we report the first retromer-trafficking interactome in Toxoplasma gondii. This retromer complex includes a trimer Vps35–Vps26–Vps29 core complex that serves as a hub for the endosome-like compartment and parasite-specific proteins. Conditional ablation of TgVps35 reveals that the retromer complex is crucial for the biogenesis of secretory organelles and for maintaining parasite morphology. We identify TgHP12 as a parasite-specific and retromer-associated protein with functions unrelated to secretory organelle formation. Furthermore, the major facilitator superfamily homologue named TgHP03, which is a multiple spanning and ligand transmembrane transporter, is maintained at the parasite membrane by retromer-mediated endocytic recycling. Thus, our findings highlight that both evolutionarily conserved and unconventional proteins act in concert in T. gondii by controlling retrograde transport that is essential for parasite integrity and host infection. PMID:27064065

  6. Theileria parasites secrete a prolyl isomerase to maintain host leukocyte transformation.

    PubMed

    Marsolier, J; Perichon, M; DeBarry, J D; Villoutreix, B O; Chluba, J; Lopez, T; Garrido, C; Zhou, X Z; Lu, K P; Fritsch, L; Ait-Si-Ali, S; Mhadhbi, M; Medjkane, S; Weitzman, J B

    2015-04-16

    Infectious agents develop intricate mechanisms to interact with host cell pathways and hijack their genetic and epigenetic machinery to change host cell phenotypic states. Among the Apicomplexa phylum of obligate intracellular parasites, which cause veterinary and human diseases, Theileria is the only genus that transforms its mammalian host cells. Theileria infection of bovine leukocytes induces proliferative and invasive phenotypes associated with activated signalling pathways, notably JNK and AP-1 (ref. 2). The transformed phenotypes are reversed by treatment with the theilericidal drug buparvaquone. We used comparative genomics to identify a homologue of the peptidyl-prolyl isomerase PIN1 in T. annulata (TaPIN1) that is secreted into the host cell and modulates oncogenic signalling pathways. Here we show that TaPIN1 is a bona fide prolyl isomerase and that it interacts with the host ubiquitin ligase FBW7, leading to its degradation and subsequent stabilization of c-JUN, which promotes transformation. We performed in vitro and in silico analysis and in vivo zebrafish xenograft experiments to demonstrate that TaPIN1 is directly inhibited by the anti-parasite drug buparvaquone (and other known PIN1 inhibitors) and is mutated in a drug-resistant strain. Prolyl isomerization is thus a conserved mechanism that is important in cancer and is used by Theileria parasites to manipulate host oncogenic signalling.

  7. AMA1-Deficient Toxoplasma gondii Parasites Transiently Colonize Mice and Trigger an Innate Immune Response That Leads to Long-Lasting Protective Immunity

    PubMed Central

    Lagal, Vanessa; Dinis, Márcia; Cannella, Dominique; Bargieri, Daniel; Gonzalez, Virginie; Andenmatten, Nicole; Meissner, Markus

    2015-01-01

    The apical membrane antigen 1 (AMA1) protein was believed to be essential for the perpetuation of two Apicomplexa parasite genera, Plasmodium and Toxoplasma, until we genetically engineered viable parasites lacking AMA1. The reduction in invasiveness of the Toxoplasma gondii RH-AMA1 knockout (RH-AMA1KO) tachyzoite population, in vitro, raised key questions about the outcome associated with these tachyzoites once inoculated in the peritoneal cavity of mice. In this study, we used AMNIS technology to simultaneously quantify and image the parasitic process driven by AMA1KO tachyzoites. We report their ability to colonize and multiply in mesothelial cells and in both resident and recruited leukocytes. While the RH-AMA1KO population amplification is rapidly lethal in immunocompromised mice, it is controlled in immunocompetent hosts, where immune cells in combination sense parasites and secrete proinflammatory cytokines. This innate response further leads to a long-lasting status immunoprotective against a secondary challenge by high inocula of the homologous type I or a distinct type II T. gondii genotypes. While AMA1 is definitively not an essential protein for tachyzoite entry and multiplication in host cells, it clearly assists the expansion of parasite population in vivo. PMID:25847964

  8. Haemosporidian infection in captive masked bobwhite quail (Colinus virginianus ridgwayi), an endangered subspecies of the northern bobwhite quail

    PubMed Central

    Pacheco, M. Andreína; Escalante, Ananias A.; Garner, Michael M.; Bradley, Gregory A.; Aguilar, Roberto F.

    2011-01-01

    The avian haemosporidian parasites (phylum Apicomplexa) are taxonomically diverse and cosmopolitan in distribution; infecting most bird families. Sources of concern are reports of clinical haemosporidian infections in birds kept as part of zoo and aviary collections. Recently, severe and acute mortality episodes have been reported in masked bobwhite quail (Colinus virginianus ridgwayi), an endangered subspecies from the American Southwest. Two hundred and five eggs of the captive flock held in Arivaca, Arizona, were hatched at a zoo in the American Southwest. Thirty four sub-adult or adult animals had lesions associated with tissue phases of hemoparasites, especially vasculitis, ventricular leiomyositis and ulcerative pododermatitis. Molecular techniques applied to blood collected from the zoo’s last twelve remaining animals resulted in the detection of a Plasmodium juxtanucleare-like and Haemoproteus sp. parasites. A Raven (Corvus corax), in a contiguous exhibit, was positive for the same Plasmodium juxtanucleare-like parasite, but remained asymptomatic for three years following detection. These findings indicate that other birds in the exhibit within the zoo premises could act as reservoirs. We conclude that haemosporidian infections could be a factor in the demise of the captive masked bobwhite quails housed at the zoo. We suggest that active surveillance for haemoporidian parasites should be incorporated as a precaution to ex-situ conservation efforts of susceptible endangered species. PMID:21726940

  9. Three-dimensional visualisation of developmental stages of an apicomplexan fish blood parasite in its invertebrate host

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Although widely used in medicine, the application of three-dimensional (3D) imaging to parasitology appears limited to date. In this study, developmental stages of a marine fish haemogregarine, Haemogregarina curvata (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina), were investigated in their leech vector, Zeylanicobdella arugamensis; this involved 3D visualisation of brightfield and confocal microscopy images of histological sections through infected leech salivary gland cells. Findings 3D assessment demonstrated the morphology of the haemogregarine stages, their spatial layout, and their relationship with enlarged host cells showing reduced cellular content. Haemogregarine meronts, located marginally within leech salivary gland cells, had small tail-like connections to the host cell limiting membrane; this parasite-host cell interface was not visible in two-dimensional (2D) light micrographs and no records of a similar connection in apicomplexan development have been traced. Conclusions This is likely the first account of the use of 3D visualisation to study developmental stages of an apicomplexan parasite in its invertebrate vector. Elucidation of the extent of development of the haemogregarine within the leech salivary cells, together with the unusual connections between meronts and the host cell membrane, illustrates the future potential of 3D visualisation in parasite-vector biology. PMID:22107751

  10. Unconventional endosome-like compartment and retromer complex in Toxoplasma gondii govern parasite integrity and host infection.

    PubMed

    Sangaré, Lamba Omar; Alayi, Tchilabalo Dilezitoko; Westermann, Benoit; Hovasse, Agnes; Sindikubwabo, Fabien; Callebaut, Isabelle; Werkmeister, Elisabeth; Lafont, Frank; Slomianny, Christian; Hakimi, Mohamed-Ali; Van Dorsselaer, Alain; Schaeffer-Reiss, Christine; Tomavo, Stanislas

    2016-04-11

    Membrane trafficking pathways play critical roles in Apicomplexa, a phylum of protozoan parasites that cause life-threatening diseases worldwide. Here we report the first retromer-trafficking interactome in Toxoplasma gondii. This retromer complex includes a trimer Vps35-Vps26-Vps29 core complex that serves as a hub for the endosome-like compartment and parasite-specific proteins. Conditional ablation of TgVps35 reveals that the retromer complex is crucial for the biogenesis of secretory organelles and for maintaining parasite morphology. We identify TgHP12 as a parasite-specific and retromer-associated protein with functions unrelated to secretory organelle formation. Furthermore, the major facilitator superfamily homologue named TgHP03, which is a multiple spanning and ligand transmembrane transporter, is maintained at the parasite membrane by retromer-mediated endocytic recycling. Thus, our findings highlight that both evolutionarily conserved and unconventional proteins act in concert in T. gondii by controlling retrograde transport that is essential for parasite integrity and host infection.

  11. Haemogregarine infections of three species of aquatic freshwater turtles from two sites in Costa Rica

    PubMed Central

    Rossow, John A.; Hernandez, Sonia M.; Sumner, Scarlett M.; Altman, Bridget R.; Crider, Caroline G.; Gammage, Mallory B.; Segal, Kristy M.; Yabsley, Michael J.

    2013-01-01

    Twenty-five black river turtles (Rhinoclemmys funerea) and eight white-lipped mud turtles (Kinosternon leucostomum) from Selva Verde, Costa Rica were examined for haemoparasites. Leeches identified as Placobdella multilineata were detected on individuals from both species. All turtles sampled were positive for intraerythrocytic haemogregarines (Apicomplexa:Adeleorina) and the average parasitemia of black river turtles (0.34% ± 0.07) was significantly higher compared to white-lipped mud turtles (0.05% ± 0.006). No correlation was found between parasitemia and relative body mass of either species or between black river turtles from the two habitats. In addition, one scorpion mud turtle (Kinosternon scorpioides) examined from La Pacifica, Costa Rica, was positive for haemogregarines (0.01% parasitemia). Interestingly, parasites of the scorpion mud turtle were significantly smaller than those from the other two species and did not displace the erythrocyte nucleus, whereas parasites from the other two species consistently displaced host cell nuclei and often distorted size and shape of erythrocytes. This is the first report of haemogregarines in turtles from Central America and of haemogregarines in K. leucostomum, K. scorpioides, and any Rhinoclemmys species. Additional studies are needed to better characterise and understand the ecology of these parasites. PMID:24533326

  12. Characterization of a novel organelle in Toxoplasma gondii with similar composition and function to the plant vacuole.

    PubMed

    Miranda, Kildare; Pace, Douglas A; Cintron, Roxana; Rodrigues, Juliany C F; Fang, Jianmin; Smith, Alyssa; Rohloff, Peter; Coelho, Elvis; de Haas, Felix; de Souza, Wanderley; Coppens, Isabelle; Sibley, L David; Moreno, Silvia N J

    2010-06-01

    Toxoplasma gondii belongs to the phylum Apicomplexa and is an important cause of congenital disease and infection in immunocompromised patients. Like most apicomplexans, T. gondii possesses several plant-like features, such as the chloroplast-like organelle, the apicoplast. We describe and characterize a novel organelle in T. gondii tachyzoites, which is visible by light microscopy and possesses a broad similarity to the plant vacuole. Electron tomography shows the interaction of this vacuole with other organelles. The presence of a plant-like vacuolar proton pyrophosphatase (TgVP1), a vacuolar proton ATPase, a cathepsin L-like protease (TgCPL), an aquaporin (TgAQP1), as well as Ca(2+)/H(+) and Na(+)/H(+) exchange activities, supports similarity to the plant vacuole. Biochemical characterization of TgVP1 in enriched fractions shows a functional similarity to the respective plant enzyme. The organelle is a Ca(2+) store and appears to have protective effects against salt stress potentially linked to its sodium transport activity. In intracellular parasites, the organelle fragments, with some markers colocalizing with the late endosomal marker, Rab7, suggesting its involvement with the endocytic pathway. Studies on the characterization of this novel organelle will be relevant to the identification of novel targets for chemotherapy against T. gondii and other apicomplexan parasites as well.

  13. Two new Eimeria species parasitic in corncrakes (Crex crex) (Gruiformes: Rallidae) in the United Kingdom.

    PubMed

    Jeanes, C; Vaughan-Higgins, R; Green, R E; Sainsbury, A W; Marshall, R N; Blake, D P

    2013-08-01

    In this study we describe 2 new species of coccidia (Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) parasites isolated from the feces of corncrake (Crex crex) (Gruiformes: Rallidae), bred in captivity in the U.K. Oocysts of Eimeria crecis n. sp. were approximately spherical and measured 15.3 μm (13-18) × 14.3 (12-16), providing an oocyst shape index of 1.1. A micropyle and oocyst residuum were absent, but a polar granule was present. Oocysts of Eimeria nenei n. sp. were ellipsoidal and measured 23.6 (21-26) × 18.1 (17-20), providing an oocyst shape index of 1.3. A micropyle and polar granule were present. Surveying free-living, wild adult corncrakes in Scotland (U.K.) demonstrated both parasite species to be widespread. These are the first species described to infect the corncrake, and they are distinct from those previously found to infect members of the closely related crane family (Gruiformes: Gruidae). Partial amplification and sequencing of the 18S rRNA gene and internal transcribed spacer 2 indicated a close relationship between the 2 proposed new species as a group distinct from the Eimeria species known to infect cranes. These newly identified parasite species have been associated with enteric disease in corncrakes being prepared for reproduction in captivity and reintroduction into England (U.K.). PMID:23347228

  14. The life cycle of Gregarina cuneata in the midgut of Tribolium castaneum and the effects of parasitism on the development of insects.

    PubMed

    Gigliolli, A A S; Julio, A H F; Conte, H

    2016-04-01

    Tribolium castaneum Herbst 1797 (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae), an important pest of stored grains and byproducts, is naturally infected by Gregarina cuneata Stein 1848 (Apicomplexa: Gregarinidae). Changes in the life cycle of insects caused by the parasite development in the midgut were studied. Trophozoites, gamonts (solitary and associated), and gametocysts were present in the midgut of the insects. In young trophozoites, the apical region differentiated into an epimerite that firmly attached the parasite to the host epithelial cells. With maturation, trophozoites developed in gamonts that were associated with the initiation of sexual reproduction in the cell cycle, culminating in the formation of the spherical gametocyst. Morpho-functional analyses indicated that gregarines absorb nutrients from infected cells and can occlude the midgut as they develop. Consequently, nutritional depletion may interfere with the host's physiology, causing decreased growth, delayed development, and high mortality rates of the parasitized insects. These results suggest G. cuneata could be an important biological agent for controlling T. castaneum in integrated pest management programs.

  15. Toxoplasma gondii myosin F, an essential motor for centrosomes positioning and apicoplast inheritance.

    PubMed

    Jacot, Damien; Daher, Wassim; Soldati-Favre, Dominique

    2013-06-12

    Members of the Apicomplexa phylum possess an organelle surrounded by four membranes, originating from the secondary endosymbiosis of a red alga. This so-called apicoplast hosts essential metabolic pathways. We report here that apicoplast inheritance is an actin-based process. Concordantly, parasites depleted in either profilin or actin depolymerizing factor, or parasites overexpressing the FH2 domain of formin 2, result in loss of the apicoplast. The class XXII myosin F (MyoF) is conserved across the phylum and localizes in the vicinity of the Toxoplasma gondii apicoplast during division. Conditional knockdown of TgMyoF severely affects apicoplast turnover, leading to parasite death. This recapitulates the phenotype observed upon perturbation of actin dynamics that led to the accumulation of the apicoplast and secretory organelles in enlarged residual bodies. To further dissect the mode of action of this motor, we conditionally stabilized the tail of MyoF, which forms an inactive heterodimer with endogenous TgMyoF. This dominant negative mutant reveals a central role of this motor in the positioning of the two centrosomes prior to daughter cell formation and in apicoplast segregation.

  16. Wet-surface-enhanced ellipsometric contrast microscopy identifies slime as a major adhesion factor during bacterial surface motility.

    PubMed

    Ducret, Adrien; Valignat, Marie-Pierre; Mouhamar, Fabrice; Mignot, Tâm; Theodoly, Olivier

    2012-06-19

    In biology, the extracellular matrix (ECM) promotes both cell adhesion and specific recognition, which is essential for central developmental processes in both eukaryotes and prokaryotes. However, live studies of the dynamic interactions between cells and the ECM, for example during motility, have been greatly impaired by imaging limitations: mostly the ability to observe the ECM at high resolution in absence of specific staining by live microscopy. To solve this problem, we developed a unique technique, wet-surface enhanced ellipsometry contrast (Wet-SEEC), which magnifies the contrast of transparent organic materials deposited on a substrate (called Wet-surf) with exquisite sensitivity. We show that Wet-SEEC allows both the observation of unprocessed nanofilms as low as 0.2 nm thick and their accurate 3D topographic reconstructions, directly by standard light microscopy. We next used Wet-SEEC to image slime secretion, a poorly defined property of many prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms that move across solid surfaces in absence of obvious extracellular appendages (gliding). Using combined Wet-SEEC and fluorescent-staining experiments, we observed slime deposition by gliding Myxococcus xanthus cells at unprecedented resolution. Altogether, the results revealed that in this bacterium, slime associates preferentially with the outermost components of the motility machinery and promotes its adhesion to the substrate on the ventral side of the cell. Strikingly, analogous roles have been proposed for the extracellular proteoglycans of gliding diatoms and apicomplexa, suggesting that slime deposition is a general means for gliding organisms to adhere and move over surfaces.

  17. Cellular identity of a novel small subunit rDNA sequence clade of apicomplexans: description of the marine parasite Rhytidocystis polygordiae n. sp. (host: Polygordius sp., Polychaeta).

    PubMed

    Leander, Brian S; Ramey, Patricia A

    2006-01-01

    A new species of Rhytidocystis (Apicomplexa) is characterized from North American waters of the Atlantic Ocean using electron microscopy and phylogenetic analyses of small subunit (SSU) rDNA sequences. Rhytidocystis polygordiae n. sp. is a parasite of the polychaete Polygordius sp. and becomes the fourth described species within this genus. The trophozoites of R. polygordiae were relatively small oblong cells (L=35-55 microm; W=20-25 microm) and distinctive in possessing subterminal indentations at both ends of the cell. The surface of the trophozoites had six to eight longitudinal series of small transverse folds and several micropores arranged in short linear rows. The trophozoites of R. polygordiae were positioned beneath the brush border of the intestinal epithelium but appeared to reside between the epithelial cells within the extracellular matrix rather than within the cells. The trophozoites possessed a uniform distribution of paraglycogen granules, putative apicoplasts, mitochondria with tubular cristae, and a centrally positioned nucleus. The trophozoites were non-motile and lacked a mucron and an apical complex. Intracellular sporozoites of R. polygordiae had a conoid, a few rhoptries, micronemes, dense granules, and a posteriorly positioned nucleus. Phylogenies inferred from SSU rDNA sequences demonstrated a close relationship between R. polygordiae and the poorly known parasite reported from the hemolymph of the giant clam Tridacna crocea. The rhytidocystid clade diverged early in the apicomplexan radiation and showed a weak affinity to a clade consisting of cryptosporidian parasites, monocystids, and neogregarines.

  18. Metatranscriptomic census of active protists in soils

    PubMed Central

    Geisen, Stefan; Tveit, Alexander T; Clark, Ian M; Richter, Andreas; Svenning, Mette M; Bonkowski, Michael; Urich, Tim

    2015-01-01

    The high numbers and diversity of protists in soil systems have long been presumed, but their true diversity and community composition have remained largely concealed. Traditional cultivation-based methods miss a majority of taxa, whereas molecular barcoding approaches employing PCR introduce significant biases in reported community composition of soil protists. Here, we applied a metatranscriptomic approach to assess the protist community in 12 mineral and organic soil samples from different vegetation types and climatic zones using small subunit ribosomal RNA transcripts as marker. We detected a broad diversity of soil protists spanning across all known eukaryotic supergroups and revealed a strikingly different community composition than shown before. Protist communities differed strongly between sites, with Rhizaria and Amoebozoa dominating in forest and grassland soils, while Alveolata were most abundant in peat soils. The Amoebozoa were comprised of Tubulinea, followed with decreasing abundance by Discosea, Variosea and Mycetozoa. Transcripts of Oomycetes, Apicomplexa and Ichthyosporea suggest soil as reservoir of parasitic protist taxa. Further, Foraminifera and Choanoflagellida were ubiquitously detected, showing that these typically marine and freshwater protists are autochthonous members of the soil microbiota. To the best of our knowledge, this metatranscriptomic study provides the most comprehensive picture of active protist communities in soils to date, which is essential to target the ecological roles of protists in the complex soil system. PMID:25822483

  19. Applications of next-generation sequencing to unravelling the evolutionary history of algae.

    PubMed

    Kim, Kyeong Mi; Park, Jun-Hyung; Bhattacharya, Debashish; Yoon, Hwan Su

    2014-02-01

    First-generation Sanger DNA sequencing revolutionized science over the past three decades and the current next-generation sequencing (NGS) technology has opened the doors to the next phase in the sequencing revolution. Using NGS, scientists are able to sequence entire genomes and to generate extensive transcriptome data from diverse photosynthetic eukaryotes in a timely and cost-effective manner. Genome data in particular shed light on the complicated evolutionary history of algae that form the basis of the food chain in many environments. In the Eukaryotic Tree of Life, the fact that photosynthetic lineages are positioned in four supergroups has important evolutionary consequences. We now know that the story of eukaryotic photosynthesis unfolds with a primary endosymbiosis between an ancestral heterotrophic protist and a captured cyanobacterium that gave rise to the glaucophytes, red algae and Viridiplantae (green algae and land plants). These primary plastids were then transferred to other eukaryotic groups through secondary endosymbiosis. A red alga was captured by the ancestor(s) of the stramenopiles, alveolates (dinoflagellates, apicomplexa, chromeridae), cryptophytes and haptophytes, whereas green algae were captured independently by the common ancestors of the euglenophytes and chlorarachniophytes. A separate case of primary endosymbiosis is found in the filose amoeba Paulinella chromatophora, which has at least nine heterotrophic sister species. Paulinella genome data provide detailed insights into the early stages of plastid establishment. Therefore, genome data produced by NGS have provided many novel insights into the taxonomy, phylogeny and evolutionary history of photosynthetic eukaryotes.

  20. ArtinM, a D-mannose-binding lectin from Artocarpus integrifolia, plays a potent adjuvant and immunostimulatory role in immunization against Neospora caninum.

    PubMed

    Cardoso, Mariana R D; Mota, Caroline M; Ribeiro, Dâmaso P; Santiago, Fernanda M; Carvalho, Julianne V; Araujo, Ester C B; Silva, Neide M; Mineo, Tiago W P; Roque-Barreira, Maria C; Mineo, José R; Silva, Deise A O

    2011-11-15

    ArtinM and Jacalin (JAC) are lectins from the jackfruit (Artocarpus integrifolia) that have important role in modulation of immune responses to pathogens. Neospora caninum is an Apicomplexa parasite that causes neuromuscular disease in dogs and reproductive disorders in cattle, with economic impact on the livestock industry. Hence, we evaluated the adjuvant effect of ArtinM and JAC in immunization of mice against neosporosis. Six C57BL/6 mouse groups were subcutaneously immunized three times at 2-week intervals with Neospora lysate antigen (NLA) associated with lectins (NLA+ArtinM and NLA+JAC), NLA, ArtinM and JAC alone, and PBS (infection control). Animals were challenged with lethal dose of Nc-1 isolate and evaluated for morbidity, mortality, specific antibody response, cytokine production by spleen cells, brain parasite burden and inflammation. Our results demonstrated that ArtinM was able to increase NLA immunogenicity, inducing the highest levels of specific total IgG and IgG2a/IgG1 ratio, ex vivo Th1 cytokine production, increased survival, the lowest brain parasite burden, along with the highest inflammation scores. In contrast, NLA+JAC immunized group showed intermediate survival, the highest brain parasite burden and the lowest inflammation scores. In conclusion, ArtinM presents stronger immunostimulatory and adjuvant effect than Jacalin in immunization of mice against neosporosis, by inducing a protective Th1-biased pro-inflammatory immune response and higher protection after parasite challenge.

  1. Year-long presence of Eimeria echidnae and absence of Eimeria tachyglossi in captive short-beaked echidnas ( Tachyglossus aculeatus ).

    PubMed

    Debenham, John J; Johnson, Robert; Vogelnest, Larry; Phalen, David N; Whittington, Richard; Slapeta, Jan

    2012-06-01

    The short-beaked echidna ( Tachyglossus aculeatus ) is 1 of 5 extant species of monotreme, found only in Australia and Papua New Guinea. The aim of this study was to identify the species of coccidia present and establish a range of subclinical Eimeria spp. (Coccidia: Apicomplexa) oocyst shedding in echidnas from eastern Australia over 18 mo. The coccidia were detected in 89% (49/55) of fecal samples from 12 long-term monitored and healthy captive echidnas, 75% (3/4) of 4 healthy long-term captive echidnas, 83% (5/6) of 6 short-term captive echidnas, and 60% (6/10) of 10 wild echidnas. Echidnas captive for 4 to 23 yr shed 100-46,000 oocysts g(-1) of E. echidnae and remained clinically healthy during this study. Sub-adult and adult wild, and short-term captive, echidnas shed oocysts of both E. echidnae and E. tachyglossi . The lack of coccidia in juvenile short-beaked echidnas suggests these animals are probably non-immune and should not be placed in environments heavily contaminated with oocysts. In addition, no oocysts were found in captive long-beaked echidnas ( Zaglossus bartoni bartoni , n  =  2) housed at Taronga Zoo. This study represents an important step in understanding the host-parasite interaction between coccidia and short-beaked echidnas. PMID:22236183

  2. Malarial proteases and host cell egress: an ‘emerging’ cascade

    PubMed Central

    Blackman, Michael J

    2008-01-01

    Malaria is a scourge of large swathes of the globe, stressing the need for a continuing effort to better understand the biology of its aetiological agent. Like all pathogens of the phylum Apicomplexa, the malaria parasite spends part of its life inside a host cell or cyst. It eventually needs to escape (egress) from this protective environment to progress through its life cycle. Egress of Plasmodium blood-stage merozoites, liver-stage merozoites and mosquito midgut sporozoites relies on protease activity, so the enzymes involved have potential as antimalarial drug targets. This review examines the role of parasite proteases in egress, in the light of current knowledge of the mechanics of the process. Proteases implicated in egress include the cytoskeleton-degrading malarial proteases falcipain-2 and plasmepsin II, plus a family of putative papain-like proteases called SERA. Recent revelations have shown that activation of the SERA proteases may be triggered by regulated secretion of a subtilisin-like serine protease called SUB1. These findings are discussed in the context of the potential for development of new chemotherapeutics targeting this stage in the parasite's life cycle. PMID:18503638

  3. First Molecular Characterization of Theileria ornithorhynchi Mackerras, 1959: yet Another Challenge to the Systematics of the Piroplasms.

    PubMed

    Paparini, Andrea; Macgregor, James; Ryan, Una M; Irwin, Peter J

    2015-12-01

    Piroplasms, tick-transmitted Apicomplexa of the genera Theileria, Babesia and Cytauxzoon, are blood-borne parasites of clinical and veterinary importance. The order Piroplasmida shows a puzzling systematics characterized by multiple clades, soft polytomies and paraphyletic/polyphyletic genera. In the present study, screening of platypuses (Ornithorhynchus anatinus), was performed to infer the parasite molecular phylogeny. DNA was extracted from blood, ectoparasites and tick eggs and the 18S rRNA- hsp70-genes were used for the phylogenetic reconstructions. Microscopic analyses detected pleomorphic intra-erythrocytic organisms and tetrads consistent with previous descriptions of Theileria ornithorhynchi Mackerras, 1959, but observation of possible schizonts could not be confirmed. DNA sequences obtained from blood and ticks allowed resolving the systematics of the first piroplasm infecting a monotreme host. Molecularly, T. ornithorhynchi formed a novel monophyletic group, basal to most known piroplasms' clades. The ancestral position of this clade, isolated from an ancient lineage of mammalian host appears particularly fascinating. The present paper discusses the inadequacies of the current molecular systematics for the Piroplasmida and the consequences of incomplete sampling, morphology-based classification and ambiguous microscopic identifications. Likely when the current sampling bias is rectified and more sequence data is made available, the phylogenetic position of T. ornithorhynchi will be further contextualized without ambiguity. PMID:26599724

  4. Amplicon-Based Pyrosequencing Reveals High Diversity of Protistan Parasites in Ships' Ballast Water: Implications for Biogeography and Infectious Diseases.

    PubMed

    Pagenkopp Lohan, K M; Fleischer, R C; Carney, K J; Holzer, K K; Ruiz, G M

    2016-04-01

    Ships' ballast water (BW) commonly moves macroorganisms and microorganisms across the world's oceans and along coasts; however, the majority of these microbial transfers have gone undetected. We applied high-throughput sequencing methods to identify microbial eukaryotes, specifically emphasizing the protistan parasites, in ships' BW collected from vessels calling to the Chesapeake Bay (Virginia and Maryland, USA) from European and Eastern Canadian ports. We utilized tagged-amplicon 454 pyrosequencing with two general primer sets, amplifying either the V4 or V9 domain of the small subunit (SSU) of the ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene complex, from total DNA extracted from water samples collected from the ballast tanks of bulk cargo vessels. We detected a diverse group of protistan taxa, with some known to contain important parasites in marine systems, including Apicomplexa (unidentified apicomplexans, unidentified gregarines, Cryptosporidium spp.), Dinophyta (Blastodinium spp., Euduboscquella sp., unidentified syndinids, Karlodinium spp., Syndinium spp.), Perkinsea (Parvilucifera sp.), Opisthokonta (Ichthyosporea sp., Pseudoperkinsidae, unidentified ichthyosporeans), and Stramenopiles (Labyrinthulomycetes). Further characterization of groups with parasitic taxa, consisting of phylogenetic analyses for four taxa (Cryptosporidium spp., Parvilucifera spp., Labyrinthulomycetes, and Ichthyosporea), revealed that sequences were obtained from both known and novel lineages. This study demonstrates that high-throughput sequencing is a viable and sensitive method for detecting parasitic protists when present and transported in the ballast water of ships. These data also underscore the potential importance of human-aided dispersal in the biogeography of these microbes and emerging diseases in the world's oceans. PMID:26476551

  5. Putative Monofunctional Type I Polyketide Synthase Units: A Dinoflagellate-Specific Feature?

    PubMed Central

    Eichholz, Karsten; Beszteri, Bánk; John, Uwe

    2012-01-01

    Marine dinoflagellates (alveolata) are microalgae of which some cause harmful algal blooms and produce a broad variety of most likely polyketide synthesis derived phycotoxins. Recently, novel polyketide synthesase (PKS) transcripts have been described from the Florida red tide dinoflagellate Karenia brevis (gymnodiniales) which are evolutionarily related to Type I PKS but were apparently expressed as monofunctional proteins, a feature typical of Type II PKS. Here, we investigated expression units of PKS I-like sequences in Alexandrium ostenfeldii (gonyaulacales) and Heterocapsa triquetra (peridiniales) at the transcript and protein level. The five full length transcripts we obtained were all characterized by polyadenylation, a 3′ UTR and the dinoflagellate specific spliced leader sequence at the 5′end. Each of the five transcripts encoded a single ketoacylsynthase (KS) domain showing high similarity to K. brevis KS sequences. The monofunctional structure was also confirmed using dinoflagellate specific KS antibodies in Western Blots. In a maximum likelihood phylogenetic analysis of KS domains from diverse PKSs, dinoflagellate KSs formed a clade placed well within the protist Type I PKS clade between apicomplexa, haptophytes and chlorophytes. These findings indicate that the atypical PKS I structure, i.e., expression as putative monofunctional units, might be a dinoflagellate specific feature. In addition, the sequenced transcripts harbored a previously unknown, apparently dinoflagellate specific conserved N-terminal domain. We discuss the implications of this novel region with regard to the putative monofunctional organization of Type I PKS in dinoflagellates. PMID:23139807

  6. Microscopic and molecular studies of the diversity of free-living protozoa in meat-cutting plants.

    PubMed

    Vaerewijck, Mario J M; Sabbe, Koen; Baré, Julie; Houf, Kurt

    2008-09-01

    The diversity of free-living protozoa in five meat-cutting plants was determined. Light microscopy after enrichment culturing was combined with sequencing of PCR-amplified, denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE)-separated 18S rRNA gene fragments, which was used as a fast screening method. The general results of the survey showed that a protozoan community of amoebae, ciliates, and flagellates was present in all of the plants. Protozoa were detected mainly in floor drains, in standing water on the floor, on soiled bars of cutting tables, on plastic pallets, and in out-of-use hot water knife sanitizers, but they were also detected on surfaces which come into direct contact with meat, such as conveyer belts, working surfaces of cutting tables, and needles of a meat tenderizer. After 7 days of incubation at refrigerator temperature, protozoa were detected in about one-half of the enrichment cultures. Based on microscopic observations, 61 morphospecies were found, and Bodo saltans, Bodo spp., Epistylis spp., Glaucoma scintillans, Petalomonas spp., Prodiscophrya collini, and Vannella sp. were the most frequently encountered identified organisms. Sequencing of DGGE bands resulted in identification of a total of 49 phylotypes, including representatives of the Amoebozoa, Chromalveolata, Excavata, Opisthokonta, and Rhizaria. Sequences of small heterotrophic flagellates were affiliated mainly with the Alveolata (Apicomplexa), Stramenopiles (Chrysophyceae), and Rhizaria (Cercozoa). This survey showed that there is high protozoan species richness in meat-cutting plants and that the species included species related to known hosts of food-borne pathogens.

  7. Population, genetic, and antigenic diversity of the apicomplexan Eimeria tenella and their relevance to vaccine development.

    PubMed

    Blake, Damer P; Clark, Emily L; Macdonald, Sarah E; Thenmozhi, Venkatachalam; Kundu, Krishnendu; Garg, Rajat; Jatau, Isa D; Ayoade, Simeon; Kawahara, Fumiya; Moftah, Abdalgader; Reid, Adam James; Adebambo, Ayotunde O; Álvarez Zapata, Ramón; Srinivasa Rao, Arni S R; Thangaraj, Kumarasamy; Banerjee, Partha S; Dhinakar-Raj, G; Raman, M; Tomley, Fiona M

    2015-09-22

    The phylum Apicomplexa includes serious pathogens of humans and animals. Understanding the distribution and population structure of these protozoan parasites is of fundamental importance to explain disease epidemiology and develop sustainable controls. Predicting the likely efficacy and longevity of subunit vaccines in field populations relies on knowledge of relevant preexisting antigenic diversity, population structure, the likelihood of coinfection by genetically distinct strains, and the efficiency of cross-fertilization. All four of these factors have been investigated for Plasmodium species parasites, revealing both clonal and panmictic population structures with exceptional polymorphism associated with immunoprotective antigens such as apical membrane antigen 1 (AMA1). For the coccidian Toxoplasma gondii only genomic diversity and population structure have been defined in depth so far; for the closely related Eimeria species, all four variables are currently unknown. Using Eimeria tenella, a major cause of the enteric disease coccidiosis, which exerts a profound effect on chicken productivity and welfare, we determined population structure, genotype distribution, and likelihood of cross-fertilization during coinfection and also investigated the extent of naturally occurring antigenic diversity for the E. tenella AMA1 homolog. Using genome-wide Sequenom SNP-based haplotyping, targeted sequencing, and single-cell genotyping, we show that in this coccidian the functionality of EtAMA1 appears to outweigh immune evasion. This result is in direct contrast to the situation in Plasmodium and most likely is underpinned by the biology of the direct and acute coccidian life cycle in the definitive host. PMID:26354122

  8. Sequence Variation in Superoxide Dismutase Gene of Toxoplasma gondii among Various Isolates from Different Hosts and Geographical Regions.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shuai; Cao, Aiping; Li, Xun; Zhao, Qunli; Liu, Yuan; Cong, Hua; He, Shenyi; Zhou, Huaiyu

    2015-06-01

    Toxoplasma gondii, an obligate intracellular protozoan parasite of the phylum Apicomplexa, can infect all warm-blooded vertebrates, including humans, livestock, and marine mammals. The aim of this study was to investigate whether superoxide dismutase (SOD) of T. gondii can be used as a new marker for genetic study or a potential vaccine candidate. The partial genome region of the SOD gene was amplified and sequenced from 10 different T. gondii isolates from different parts of the world, and all the sequences were examined by PCR-RFLP, sequence analysis, and phylogenetic reconstruction. The results showed that partial SOD gene sequences ranged from 1,702 bp to 1,712 bp and A + T contents varied from 50.1% to 51.1% among all examined isolates. Sequence alignment analysis identified total 43 variable nucleotide positions, and these results showed that 97.5% sequence similarity of SOD gene among all examined isolates. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that these SOD sequences were not an effective molecular marker for differential identification of T. gondii strains. The research demonstrated existence of low sequence variation in the SOD gene among T. gondii strains of different genotypes from different hosts and geographical regions. PMID:26174817

  9. Global biogeography of highly diverse protistan communities in soil

    PubMed Central

    Bates, Scott T; Clemente, Jose C; Flores, Gilberto E; Walters, William Anthony; Parfrey, Laura Wegener; Knight, Rob; Fierer, Noah

    2013-01-01

    Protists are ubiquitous members of soil microbial communities, but the structure of these communities, and the factors that influence their diversity, are poorly understood. We used barcoded pyrosequencing to survey comprehensively the diversity of soil protists from 40 sites across a broad geographic range that represent a variety of biome types, from tropical forests to deserts. In addition to taxa known to be dominant in soil, including Cercozoa and Ciliophora, we found high relative abundances of groups such as Apicomplexa and Dinophyceae that have not previously been recognized as being important components of soil microbial communities. Soil protistan communities were highly diverse, approaching the extreme diversity of their bacterial counterparts across the same sites. Like bacterial taxa, protistan taxa were not globally distributed, and the composition of these communities diverged considerably across large geographic distances. However, soil protistan and bacterial communities exhibit very different global-scale biogeographical patterns, with protistan communities strongly structured by climatic conditions that regulate annual soil moisture availability. PMID:23235291

  10. Metatranscriptomic census of active protists in soils.

    PubMed

    Geisen, Stefan; Tveit, Alexander T; Clark, Ian M; Richter, Andreas; Svenning, Mette M; Bonkowski, Michael; Urich, Tim

    2015-10-01

    The high numbers and diversity of protists in soil systems have long been presumed, but their true diversity and community composition have remained largely concealed. Traditional cultivation-based methods miss a majority of taxa, whereas molecular barcoding approaches employing PCR introduce significant biases in reported community composition of soil protists. Here, we applied a metatranscriptomic approach to assess the protist community in 12 mineral and organic soil samples from different vegetation types and climatic zones using small subunit ribosomal RNA transcripts as marker. We detected a broad diversity of soil protists spanning across all known eukaryotic supergroups and revealed a strikingly different community composition than shown before. Protist communities differed strongly between sites, with Rhizaria and Amoebozoa dominating in forest and grassland soils, while Alveolata were most abundant in peat soils. The Amoebozoa were comprised of Tubulinea, followed with decreasing abundance by Discosea, Variosea and Mycetozoa. Transcripts of Oomycetes, Apicomplexa and Ichthyosporea suggest soil as reservoir of parasitic protist taxa. Further, Foraminifera and Choanoflagellida were ubiquitously detected, showing that these typically marine and freshwater protists are autochthonous members of the soil microbiota. To the best of our knowledge, this metatranscriptomic study provides the most comprehensive picture of active protist communities in soils to date, which is essential to target the ecological roles of protists in the complex soil system. PMID:25822483

  11. Systematic identification of the lysine succinylation in the protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Li, Xiaolong; Hu, Xin; Wan, Yujing; Xie, Guizhen; Li, Xiangzhi; Chen, Di; Cheng, Zhongyi; Yi, Xingling; Liang, Shaohui; Tan, Feng

    2014-12-01

    Lysine succinylation is a new posttranslational modification identified in histone proteins of Toxoplasma gondii, an obligate intracellular parasite of the phylum Apicomplexa. However, very little is known about their scope and cellular distribution. Here, using LC-MS/MS to identify parasite peptides enriched by immunopurification with succinyl lysine antibody, we produced the first lysine succinylome in this parasite. Overall, a total of 425 lysine succinylation sites that occurred on 147 succinylated proteins were identified in extracellular Toxoplasma tachyzoites, which is a proliferative stage that results in acute toxoplasmosis. With the bioinformatics analysis, it is shown that these succinylated proteins are evolutionarily conserved and involved in a wide variety of cellular functions such as metabolism and epigenetic gene regulation and exhibit diverse subcellular localizations. Moreover, we defined five types of definitively conserved succinylation site motifs, and the results imply that lysine residue of a polypeptide with lysine on the +3 position and without lysine at the -1 to +2 position is a preferred substrate of lysine succinyltransferase. In conclusion, our findings suggest that lysine succinylation in Toxoplasma involves a diverse array of cellular functions, although the succinylation occurs at a low level.

  12. An atomic-resolution view of neofunctionalization in the evolution of apicomplexan lactate dehydrogenases

    PubMed Central

    Boucher, Jeffrey I; Jacobowitz, Joseph R; Beckett, Brian C; Classen, Scott; Theobald, Douglas L

    2014-01-01

    Malate and lactate dehydrogenases (MDH and LDH) are homologous, core metabolic enzymes that share a fold and catalytic mechanism yet possess strict specificity for their substrates. In the Apicomplexa, convergent evolution of an unusual LDH from MDH produced a difference in specificity exceeding 12 orders of magnitude. The mechanisms responsible for this extraordinary functional shift are currently unknown. Using ancestral protein resurrection, we find that specificity evolved in apicomplexan LDHs by classic neofunctionalization characterized by long-range epistasis, a promiscuous intermediate, and few gain-of-function mutations of large effect. In canonical MDHs and LDHs, a single residue in the active-site loop governs substrate specificity: Arg102 in MDHs and Gln102 in LDHs. During the evolution of the apicomplexan LDH, however, specificity switched via an insertion that shifted the position and identity of this ‘specificity residue’ to Trp107f. Residues far from the active site also determine specificity, as shown by the crystal structures of three ancestral proteins bracketing the key duplication event. This work provides an unprecedented atomic-resolution view of evolutionary trajectories creating a nascent enzymatic function. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.02304.001 PMID:24966208

  13. Inhibition and Structure of Toxoplasma gondii Purine Nucleoside Phosphorylase

    PubMed Central

    Donaldson, Teraya M.; Cassera, María B.; Ho, Meng-Chiao; Zhan, Chenyang; Merino, Emilio F.; Evans, Gary B.; Tyler, Peter C.; Almo, Steven C.; Schramm, Vern L.

    2014-01-01

    The intracellular pathogen Toxoplasma gondii is a purine auxotroph that relies on purine salvage for proliferation. We have optimized T. gondii purine nucleoside phosphorylase (TgPNP) stability and crystallized TgPNP with phosphate and immucillin-H, a transition-state analogue that has high affinity for the enzyme. Immucillin-H bound to TgPNP with a dissociation constant of 370 pM, the highest affinity of 11 immucillins selected to probe the catalytic site. The specificity for transition-state analogues indicated an early dissociative transition state for TgPNP. Compared to Plasmodium falciparum PNP, large substituents surrounding the 5′-hydroxyl group of inhibitors demonstrate reduced capacity for TgPNP inhibition. Catalytic discrimination against large 5′ groups is consistent with the inability of TgPNP to catalyze the phosphorolysis of 5′-methylthioinosine to hypoxanthine. In contrast to mammalian PNP, the 2′-hydroxyl group is crucial for inhibitor binding in the catalytic site of TgPNP. This first crystal structure of TgPNP describes the basis for discrimination against 5′-methylthioinosine and similarly 5′-hydroxy-substituted immucillins; structural differences reflect the unique adaptations of purine salvage pathways of Apicomplexa. PMID:24585883

  14. Toxoplasma gondii Relies on Both Host and Parasite Isoprenoids and Can Be Rendered Sensitive to Atorvastatin

    PubMed Central

    Li, Zhu-Hong; Ramakrishnan, Srinivasan; Striepen, Boris; Moreno, Silvia N. J.

    2013-01-01

    Intracellular pathogens have complex metabolic interactions with their host cells to ensure a steady supply of energy and anabolic building blocks for rapid growth. Here we use the obligate intracellular parasite Toxoplasma gondii to probe this interaction for isoprenoids, abundant lipidic compounds essential to many cellular processes including signaling, trafficking, energy metabolism, and protein translation. Synthesis of precursors for isoprenoids in Apicomplexa occurs in the apicoplast and is essential. To synthesize longer isoprenoids from these precursors, T. gondii expresses a bifunctional farnesyl diphosphate/geranylgeranyl diphosphate synthase (TgFPPS). In this work we construct and characterize T. gondii null mutants for this enzyme. Surprisingly, these mutants have only a mild growth phenotype and an isoprenoid composition similar to wild type parasites. However, when extracellular, the loss of the enzyme becomes phenotypically apparent. This strongly suggests that intracellular parasite salvage FPP and/or geranylgeranyl diphosphate (GGPP) from the host. We test this hypothesis using inhibitors of host cell isoprenoid synthesis. Mammals use the mevalonate pathway, which is susceptible to statins. We document strong synergy between statin treatment and pharmacological or genetic interference with the parasite isoprenoid pathway. Mice can be cured with atorvastatin (Lipitor) from a lethal infection with the TgFPPs mutant. We propose a double-hit strategy combining inhibitors of host and parasite pathways as a novel therapeutic approach against Apicomplexan parasites. PMID:24146616

  15. Screening of potential targets in Plasmodium falciparum using stage-specific metabolic network analysis.

    PubMed

    Dholakia, Neel; Dhandhukia, Pinakin; Roy, Nilanjan

    2015-11-01

    The Apicomplexa parasite Plasmodium is a major cause of death in developing countries which are less equipped to bring new medicines to the market. Currently available drugs used for treatment of malaria are limited either by inadequate efficacy, toxicity and/or increased resistance. Availability of the genome sequence, microarray data and metabolic profile of Plasmodium parasite offers an opportunity for the identification of stage-specific genes important to the organism's lifecycle. In this study, microarray data were analysed for differential expression and overlapped onto metabolic pathways to identify differentially regulated pathways essential for transition to successive erythrocytic stages. The results obtained indicate that S-adenosylmethionine decarboxylase/ornithine decarboxylase, a bifunctional enzyme required for polyamine synthesis, is important for the Plasmodium cell growth in the absence of exogenous polyamines. S-adenosylmethionine decarboxylase/ornithine decarboxylase is a valuable target for designing therapeutically useful inhibitors. One such inhibitor, [Formula: see text]-difluoromethyl ornithine, is currently in use for the treatment of African sleeping sickness caused by Trypanosoma brucei. Structural studies of ornithine decarboxylase along with known inhibitors and their analogues were carried out to screen drug databases for more effective and less toxic compounds.

  16. Complex polymorphisms in the Plasmodium falciparum multidrug resistance protein 2 gene and its contribution to antimalarial response.

    PubMed

    Veiga, Maria Isabel; Osório, Nuno S; Ferreira, Pedro Eduardo; Franzén, Oscar; Dahlstrom, Sabina; Lum, J Koji; Nosten, Francois; Gil, José Pedro

    2014-12-01

    Plasmodium falciparum has the capacity to escape the actions of essentially all antimalarial drugs. ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporter proteins are known to cause multidrug resistance in a large range of organisms, including the Apicomplexa parasites. P. falciparum genome analysis has revealed two genes coding for the multidrug resistance protein (MRP) type of ABC transporters: Pfmrp1, previously associated with decreased parasite drug susceptibility, and the poorly studied Pfmrp2. The role of Pfmrp2 polymorphisms in modulating sensitivity to antimalarial drugs has not been established. We herein report a comprehensive account of the Pfmrp2 genetic variability in 46 isolates from Thailand. A notably high frequency of 2.8 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs)/kb was identified for this gene, including some novel SNPs. Additionally, we found that Pfmrp2 harbors a significant number of microindels, some previously not reported. We also investigated the potential association of the identified Pfmrp2 polymorphisms with altered in vitro susceptibility to several antimalarials used in artemisinin-based combination therapy and with parasite clearance time. Association analysis suggested Pfmrp2 polymorphisms modulate the parasite's in vitro response to quinoline antimalarials, including chloroquine, piperaquine, and mefloquine, and association with in vivo parasite clearance. In conclusion, our study reveals that the Pfmrp2 gene is the most diverse ABC transporter known in P. falciparum with a potential role in antimalarial drug resistance.

  17. Translational repression of the cpw-wpc gene family in the malaria parasite Plasmodium.

    PubMed

    Rao, Pavitra N; Santos, Jorge M; Pain, Arnab; Templeton, Thomas J; Mair, Gunnar R

    2016-10-01

    The technical challenges of working with the sexual stages of the malaria parasite Plasmodium have hindered the characterization of sexual stage antigens in the quest for a successful malaria transmission-blocking vaccine. One such predicted and largely uncharacterized group of sexual stage candidate antigens is the CPW-WPC family of proteins. CPW-WPC proteins are named for a characteristic domain that contains two conserved motifs, CPxxW and WPC. Conserved across Apicomplexa, this family is also present earlier in the Alveolata in the free-living, non-parasitophorous, photosynthetic chromerids, Chromera and Vitrella. In Plasmodium falciparum and Plasmodium berghei blood stage parasites, the transcripts of all nine cpw-wpc genes have been detected in gametocytes. RNA immunoprecipitation followed by reverse transcriptase-PCR reveals all P. berghei cpw-wpc transcripts to be bound by the translational repressors DOZI and CITH, and thus are likely under translational control prior to transmission from the rodent host to the mosquito vector in P. berghei. The GFP tagging of two endogenous P. berghei genes confirmed translational silencing in the gametocyte and translation in ookinetes. By establishing a luciferase transgene assay, we show that the 3' untranslated region of PF3D7_1331400 controls protein expression of this reporter in P. falciparum gametocytes. Our analyses suggest that cpw-wpc genes are translationally silenced in gametocytes across Plasmodium spp. and activated during ookinete formation and thus may have a role in transmission to the mosquito.

  18. Prevalence of Protozoa Species in Drinking and Environmental Water Sources in Sudan

    PubMed Central

    Shanan, Salah; Abd, Hadi; Bayoumi, Magdi; Saeed, Amir; Sandström, Gunnar

    2015-01-01

    Protozoa are eukaryotic cells distributed worldwide in nature and are receiving increasing attention as reservoirs and potential vectors for the transmission of pathogenic bacteria. In the environment, on the other hand, many genera of the protozoa are human and animal pathogens. Only limited information is available on these organisms in developing countries and so far no information on their presence is available from Sudan. It is necessary to establish a molecular identification of species of the protozoa from drinking and environmental water. 600 water samples were collected from five states (Gadarif, Khartoum, Kordofan, Juba, and Wad Madani) in Sudan and analysed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and sequencing. 57 out of 600 water samples were PCR positive for protozoa. 38 out of the 57 positive samples were identified by sequencing to contain 66 protozoa species including 19 (28.8%) amoebae, 17 (25.7%) Apicomplexa, 25 (37.9%) ciliates, and 5 (7.6%) flagellates. This study utilized molecular methods identified species belonging to all phyla of protozoa and presented a fast and accurate molecular detection and identification of pathogenic as well as free-living protozoa in water uncovering hazards facing public health. PMID:25789313

  19. [Golgi apparatus in parasitic protists (review of the literature)].

    PubMed

    Sokolova, Iu Ia; Snigirevskaia, E S; Komissarchik, Ia Iu

    2007-01-01

    This review summarizes modem data on Golgi apparatus of parasitic protists and demonstrates how the parasitic lifestyle determines functional and structural peculiarities of secretory systems in unrelated groups of unicellular parasites, in comparison to ones of "model systems", mammalian and yeast cells. The review covers the most well-studied protists, predominantly of high medical importance, belonging to following taxons: Parabasalia (Trichomonas), Diplomonada (Giardia), Entamoebidae (Entamoeba), parasitic Alveolata of the phyllum Apicomplexa (Toxoplasma and Plasmodium), and Kinetoplastida (Trypanosoma and Leishmania). Numerous recent publications demonstrated that studies on intracellular traffic in the mentioned above parasites essentially advanced our knowledge of Golgi function, traditionally based on research of cultured mammalian and yeast cells. Morphology of Golgi organelle in eukaryotes from various taxonomic groups has been compared. Within three of total six the highest taxons of Eukatyota (Adl et al., 2005) there exist at minimum eight groups represented by species lacking Golgi dictiosomes. However, biochemical and (or) molecular (genomic) evidences indicate that the organelle with functions of Golgi was present in every studied so far lineage of eukaryotes. Loss of Golgi organelle is a secondary event, which has been proven by identification of Golgi genes in the genomes of Golgi-lacking lineages. This loss might have occurred independently several times in the course of evolution. Neither the number of stacks, nor the size of the organelle correlates with intensity of secretion, or the position of the species on the evolutionary tree (in terms of presumably early/lately diverged lineages).

  20. Amplicon-Based Pyrosequencing Reveals High Diversity of Protistan Parasites in Ships' Ballast Water: Implications for Biogeography and Infectious Diseases.

    PubMed

    Pagenkopp Lohan, K M; Fleischer, R C; Carney, K J; Holzer, K K; Ruiz, G M

    2016-04-01

    Ships' ballast water (BW) commonly moves macroorganisms and microorganisms across the world's oceans and along coasts; however, the majority of these microbial transfers have gone undetected. We applied high-throughput sequencing methods to identify microbial eukaryotes, specifically emphasizing the protistan parasites, in ships' BW collected from vessels calling to the Chesapeake Bay (Virginia and Maryland, USA) from European and Eastern Canadian ports. We utilized tagged-amplicon 454 pyrosequencing with two general primer sets, amplifying either the V4 or V9 domain of the small subunit (SSU) of the ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene complex, from total DNA extracted from water samples collected from the ballast tanks of bulk cargo vessels. We detected a diverse group of protistan taxa, with some known to contain important parasites in marine systems, including Apicomplexa (unidentified apicomplexans, unidentified gregarines, Cryptosporidium spp.), Dinophyta (Blastodinium spp., Euduboscquella sp., unidentified syndinids, Karlodinium spp., Syndinium spp.), Perkinsea (Parvilucifera sp.), Opisthokonta (Ichthyosporea sp., Pseudoperkinsidae, unidentified ichthyosporeans), and Stramenopiles (Labyrinthulomycetes). Further characterization of groups with parasitic taxa, consisting of phylogenetic analyses for four taxa (Cryptosporidium spp., Parvilucifera spp., Labyrinthulomycetes, and Ichthyosporea), revealed that sequences were obtained from both known and novel lineages. This study demonstrates that high-throughput sequencing is a viable and sensitive method for detecting parasitic protists when present and transported in the ballast water of ships. These data also underscore the potential importance of human-aided dispersal in the biogeography of these microbes and emerging diseases in the world's oceans.

  1. A small mitochondrial protein present in myzozoans is essential for malaria transmission.

    PubMed

    Klug, Dennis; Mair, Gunnar R; Frischknecht, Friedrich; Douglas, Ross G

    2016-04-01

    Myzozoans (which include dinoflagellates, chromerids and apicomplexans) display notable divergence from their ciliate sister group, including a reduced mitochondrial genome and divergent metabolic processes. The factors contributing to these divergent processes are still poorly understood and could serve as potential drug targets in disease-causing protists. Here, we report the identification and characterization of a small mitochondrial protein from the rodent-infecting apicomplexan parasite Plasmodium berghei that is essential for development in its mosquito host. Parasites lacking the gene mitochondrial protein ookinete developmental defect (mpodd) showed malformed parasites that were unable to transmit to mosquitoes. Knockout parasites displayed reduced mitochondrial mass without affecting organelle integrity, indicating no role of the protein in mitochondrial biogenesis or morphology maintenance but a likely role in mitochondrial import or metabolism. Using genetic complementation experiments, we identified a previously unrecognized Plasmodium falciparum homologue that can rescue the mpodd(-) phenotype, thereby showing that the gene is functionally conserved. As far as can be detected, mpodd is found in myzozoans, has homologues in the phylum Apicomplexa and appears to have arisen in free-living dinoflagellates. This suggests that the MPODD protein has a conserved mitochondrial role that is important for myzozoans. While previous studies identified a number of essential proteins which are generally highly conserved evolutionarily, our study identifies, for the first time, a non-canonical protein fulfilling a crucial function in the mitochondrion during parasite transmission.

  2. A cyanobacterial gene in nonphotosynthetic protists--an early chloroplast acquisition in eukaryotes?

    PubMed

    Andersson, Jan O; Roger, Andrew J

    2002-01-22

    Since the incorporation of mitochondria and chloroplasts (plastids) into the eukaryotic cell by endosymbiosis, genes have been transferred from the organellar genomes to the nucleus of the host, via an ongoing process known as endosymbiotic gene transfer. Accordingly, in photosynthetic eukaryotes, nuclear genes with cyanobacterial affinity are believed to have originated from endosymbiotic gene transfer from chloroplasts. Analysis of the Arabidopsis thaliana genome has shown that a significant fraction (2%-9%) of the nuclear genes have such an endosymbiotic origin. Recently, it was argued that 6-phosphogluconate dehydrogenase (gnd)-the second enzyme in the oxidative pentose phosphate pathway-was one such example. Here we show that gnd genes with cyanobacterial affinity also are present in several nonphotosynthetic protistan lineages, such as Heterolobosea, Apicomplexa, and parasitic Heterokonta. Current data cannot definitively resolve whether these groups acquired the gnd gene by primary and/or secondary endosymbiosis or via an independent lateral gene transfer event. Nevertheless, our data suggest that chloroplasts were introduced into eukaryotes much earlier than previously thought and that several major groups of heterotrophic eukaryotes have secondarily lost photosynthetic plastids.

  3. Metatranscriptomic census of active protists in soils.

    PubMed

    Geisen, Stefan; Tveit, Alexander T; Clark, Ian M; Richter, Andreas; Svenning, Mette M; Bonkowski, Michael; Urich, Tim

    2015-10-01

    The high numbers and diversity of protists in soil systems have long been presumed, but their true diversity and community composition have remained largely concealed. Traditional cultivation-based methods miss a majority of taxa, whereas molecular barcoding approaches employing PCR introduce significant biases in reported community composition of soil protists. Here, we applied a metatranscriptomic approach to assess the protist community in 12 mineral and organic soil samples from different vegetation types and climatic zones using small subunit ribosomal RNA transcripts as marker. We detected a broad diversity of soil protists spanning across all known eukaryotic supergroups and revealed a strikingly different community composition than shown before. Protist communities differed strongly between sites, with Rhizaria and Amoebozoa dominating in forest and grassland soils, while Alveolata were most abundant in peat soils. The Amoebozoa were comprised of Tubulinea, followed with decreasing abundance by Discosea, Variosea and Mycetozoa. Transcripts of Oomycetes, Apicomplexa and Ichthyosporea suggest soil as reservoir of parasitic protist taxa. Further, Foraminifera and Choanoflagellida were ubiquitously detected, showing that these typically marine and freshwater protists are autochthonous members of the soil microbiota. To the best of our knowledge, this metatranscriptomic study provides the most comprehensive picture of active protist communities in soils to date, which is essential to target the ecological roles of protists in the complex soil system.

  4. Biogenesis of the inner membrane complex is dependent on vesicular transport by the alveolate specific GTPase Rab11B.

    PubMed

    Agop-Nersesian, Carolina; Egarter, Saskia; Langsley, Gordon; Foth, Bernardo J; Ferguson, David J P; Meissner, Markus

    2010-01-01

    Apicomplexan parasites belong to a recently recognised group of protozoa referred to as Alveolata. These protists contain membranous sacs (alveoli) beneath the plasma membrane, termed the Inner Membrane Complex (IMC) in the case of Apicomplexa. During parasite replication the IMC is formed de novo within the mother cell in a process described as internal budding. We hypothesized that an alveolate specific factor is involved in the specific transport of vesicles from the Golgi to the IMC and identified the small GTPase Rab11B as an alveolate specific Rab-GTPase that localises to the growing end of the IMC during replication of Toxoplasma gondii. Conditional interference with Rab11B function leads to a profound defect in IMC biogenesis, indicating that Rab11B is required for the transport of Golgi derived vesicles to the nascent IMC of the daughter cell. Curiously, a block in IMC biogenesis did not affect formation of sub-pellicular microtubules, indicating that IMC biogenesis and formation of sub-pellicular microtubules is not mechanistically linked. We propose a model where Rab11B specifically transports vesicles derived from the Golgi to the immature IMC of the growing daughter parasites.

  5. Evidence of Taxa-, Clone-, and Kin-discrimination in Protists: Ecological and Evolutionary Implications.

    PubMed

    Espinosa, Avelina; Paz-Y-Miño-C, Guillermo

    2014-11-01

    Unicellular eukaryotes, or protists, are among the most ancient organisms on Earth. Protists belong to multiple taxonomic groups; they are widely distributed geographically and in all environments. Their ability to discriminate among con- and heterospecifics has been documented during the past decade. Here we discuss exemplar cases of taxa-, clone-, and possible kin-discrimination in five major lineages: Mycetozoa (Dictyostelium, Polysphondylium), Dikarya (Saccharomyces), Ciliophora (Tetrahymena), Apicomplexa (Plasmodium) and Archamoebae (Entamoeba). We summarize the proposed genetic mechanisms involved in discrimination-mediated aggregation (self versus different), including the csA, FLO and trg (formerly lag) genes, and the Proliferation Activation Factors (PAFs), which facilitate clustering in some protistan taxa. We caution about the experimental challenges intrinsic to studying recognition in protists, and highlight the opportunities for exploring the ecology and evolution of complex forms of cell-cell communication, including social behavior, in a polyphyletic, still superficially understood group of organisms. Because unicellular eukaryotes are the evolutionary precursors of multicellular life, we infer that their mechanisms of taxa-, clone-, and possible kin-discrimination gave origin to the complex diversification and sophistication of traits associated with species and kin recognition in plants, fungi, invertebrates and vertebrates.

  6. Complete gene map of the plastid-like DNA of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum.

    PubMed

    Wilson, R J; Denny, P W; Preiser, P R; Rangachari, K; Roberts, K; Roy, A; Whyte, A; Strath, M; Moore, D J; Moore, P W; Williamson, D H

    1996-08-16

    Malaria parasites, and other parasitic protists of the Phylum Apicomplexa, carry a plastid-like genome with greatly reduced sequence complexity. This 35 kb DNA circle resembles the plastid DNA of non-photosynthetic plants, encoding almost exclusively components involved in gene expression. The complete gene map described here includes genes for duplicated large and small subunit rRNAs, 25 species of tRNA, three subunits of a eubacterial RNA polymerase, 17 ribosomal proteins, and a translation elongation factor. In addition, it codes for an unusual member of the Clp family of chaperones, as well as an open reading frame of unknown function found in red algal plastids. Transcription is polycistronic. This plastid-like DNA molecule is conserved in several genera of apicomplexans and is conjectured to have been acquired by an early progenitor of the Phylum by secondary endosymbiosis. The function of the organelle (plastid) carrying this DNA remains obscure, but appears to be specified by genes transferred to the nucleus.

  7. Organization and expression of organellar genomes.

    PubMed

    Barbrook, Adrian C; Howe, Christopher J; Kurniawan, Davy P; Tarr, Sarah J

    2010-03-12

    Protist mitochondrial genomes show a very wide range of gene content, ranging from three genes for respiratory chain components in Apicomplexa and dinoflagellates to nearly 100 genes in Reclinomonas americana. In many organisms the rRNA genes are fragmented, although still functional. Some protist mitochondria encode a full set of tRNAs, while others rely on imported molecules. There is similarly a wide variation in mitochondrial genome organization, even among closely related groups. Mitochondrial gene expression and control are generally poorly characterized. Transcription probably relies on a 'viral-type' RNA polymerase, although a 'bacterial-type' enzyme may be involved in some cases. Transcripts are heavily edited in many lineages. The chloroplast genome generally shows less variation in gene content and organization, although greatly reduced genomes are found in dinoflagellate algae and non-photosynthetic organisms. Genes in the former are located on small plasmids in contrast to the larger molecules found elsewhere. Control of gene expression in chloroplasts involves transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation. Redox poise and the ATP/ADP ratio are likely to be important determinants. Some protists have an additional extranuclear genome, the nucleomorph, which is a remnant nucleus. Nucleomorphs of two separate lineages have a number of features in common.

  8. Malaria, Plasmodium falciparum and its apicoplast.

    PubMed

    Kalanon, Ming; McFadden, Geoffrey I

    2010-06-01

    Malaria, which is caused by species of the parasite genus Plasmodium, remains a major global health problem. A vestigial plastid homologous with the chloroplasts of plants and algae was discovered in malaria and related parasites from the phylum Apicomplexa and has radically changed our view of the evolutionary origins of these disease-causing protists. We now recognize that this large group of parasites had a photosynthetic ancestry and were converted into parasitism early in the evolution of animals. Apicomplexans have probably been parasitizing the animal kingdom for more than 500 million years. The relic plastid persists in most apicomplexans and is an essential component. Perturbation of apicoplast function or inheritance results in parasite death, making the organelle a promising target for chemotherapy. Plastids, including those of malaria parasites, are essentially reduced endosymbiotic bacteria living inside a eukaryotic host. This means that plastids have bacterial-type metabolic pathways and housekeeping processes, all of which are vulnerable to antibacterial compounds. Indeed, many antibacterials kill malaria parasites by blocking essential processes in the plastid. Furthermore, a range of herbicides that target plastid metabolism of undesired plants are also parasiticidal, making them potential new leads for antimalarial drugs. In the present review, we examine the evolutionary origins of the malaria parasite's plastid by endosymbiosis and outline the recent findings on how the organelle imports nuclear-encoded proteins through a set of translocation machineries in the membranes that bound the organelle.

  9. The origins of apicomplexan sequence innovation.

    PubMed

    Wasmuth, James; Daub, Jennifer; Peregrín-Alvarez, José Manuel; Finney, Constance A M; Parkinson, John

    2009-07-01

    The Apicomplexa are a group of phylogenetically related parasitic protists that include Plasmodium, Cryptosporidium, and Toxoplasma. Together they are a major global burden on human health and economics. To meet this challenge, several international consortia have generated vast amounts of sequence data for many of these parasites. Here, we exploit these data to perform a systematic analysis of protein family and domain incidence across the phylum. A total of 87,736 protein sequences were collected from 15 apicomplexan species. These were compared with three protein databases, including the partial genome database, PartiGeneDB, which increases the breadth of taxonomic coverage. From these searches we constructed taxonomic profiles that reveal the extent of apicomplexan sequence diversity. Sequences without a significant match outside the phylum were denoted as apicomplexan specialized. These were collated into 9134 discrete protein families and placed in the context of the apicomplexan phylogeny, identifying the putative origin of each family. Most apicomplexan families were associated with an individual genus or species. Interestingly, many genera-specific innovations were associated with specialized host cell invasion and/or parasite survival processes. Contrastingly, those families reflecting more ancestral relationships were enriched in generalized housekeeping functions such as translation and transcription, which have diverged within the apicomplexan lineage. Protein domain searches revealed 192 domains not previously reported in apicomplexans together with a number of novel domain combinations. We highlight domains that may be important to parasite survival.

  10. Genetic dissection of floridean starch synthesis in the cytosol of the model dinoflagellate Crypthecodinium cohnii.

    PubMed

    Dauvillée, David; Deschamps, Philippe; Ral, Jean-Philippe; Plancke, Charlotte; Putaux, Jean-Luc; Devassine, Jimi; Durand-Terrasson, Amandine; Devin, Aline; Ball, Steven G

    2009-12-15

    Starch defines an insoluble semicrystalline form of storage polysaccharides restricted to Archaeplastida (red and green algae, land plants, and glaucophytes) and some secondary endosymbiosis derivatives of the latter. While green algae and land-plants store starch in plastids by using an ADP-glucose-based pathway related to that of cyanobacteria, red algae, glaucophytes, cryptophytes, dinoflagellates, and apicomplexa parasites store a similar type of polysaccharide named floridean starch in their cytosol or periplast. These organisms are suspected to store their floridean starch from UDP-glucose in a fashion similar to heterotrophic eukaryotes. However, experimental proof of this suspicion has never been produced. Dinoflagellates define an important group of both photoautotrophic and heterotrophic protists. We now report the selection and characterization of a low starch mutant of the heterotrophic dinoflagellate Crypthecodinium cohnii. We show that the sta1-1 mutation of C. cohnii leads to a modification of the UDP-glucose-specific soluble starch synthase activity that correlates with a decrease in starch content and an alteration of amylopectin structure. These experimental results validate the UDP-glucose-based pathway proposed for floridean starch synthesis.

  11. Characterization of the chloroquine resistance transporter homologue in Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Warring, Sally D; Dou, Zhicheng; Carruthers, Vern B; McFadden, Geoffrey I; van Dooren, Giel G

    2014-11-01

    Mutations in the Plasmodium falciparum chloroquine resistance transporter (PfCRT) protein confer resistance to the antimalarial drug chloroquine. PfCRT localizes to the parasite digestive vacuole, the site of chloroquine action, where it mediates resistance by transporting chloroquine out of the digestive vacuole. PfCRT belongs to a family of transporter proteins called the chloroquine resistance transporter family. CRT family proteins are found throughout the Apicomplexa, in some protists, and in plants. Despite the importance of PfCRT in drug resistance, little is known about the evolution or native function of CRT proteins. The apicomplexan parasite Toxoplasma gondii contains one CRT family protein. We demonstrate that T. gondii CRT (TgCRT) colocalizes with markers for the vacuolar (VAC) compartment in these parasites. The TgCRT-containing VAC is a highly dynamic organelle, changing its morphology and protein composition between intracellular and extracellular forms of the parasite. Regulated knockdown of TgCRT expression resulted in modest reduction in parasite fitness and swelling of the VAC, indicating that TgCRT contributes to parasite growth and VAC physiology. Together, our findings provide new information on the role of CRT family proteins in apicomplexan parasites.

  12. The contribution of DNA slippage to eukaryotic nuclear 18S rRNA evolution.

    PubMed

    Hancock, J M

    1995-06-01

    Six of 204 eukaryotic nuclear small-subunit ribosomal RNA sequences analyzed show a highly significant degree of clustering of short sequence motifs that indicates the fixation of products of replication slippage within them in their recent evolutionary history. A further 72 sequences show weaker indications of sequence repetition. Repetitive sequences in SSU rRNAs are preferentially located in variable regions and in particular in V4 and V7. The conserved region immediately 5' to V7 (C7) is also consistently repetitive. Whereas variable regions vary in length and appear to have evolved by the fixation of slippage products, C7 shows no indication of length variation. Repetition within C7 is therefore either not a consequence of slippage or reflects very ancient slippage events. The phylogenetic distribution of sequence simplicity in small-subunit rRNAs is patchy, being largely confined to the Mammalia, Apicomplexa, Tetrahymenidae, and Trypanosomatidae. The regions of the molecule associated with sequence simplicity vary with taxonomic grouping as do the sequence motifs undergoing slippage. Comparison of rates of insertion and substitution in a lineage within the genus Plasmodium confirms that both rates are higher in variable regions than in conserved regions. The insertion rate in variable regions is substantially lower than the substitution rate, suggesting that selection acts more strongly on slippage products than on point mutations in these regions. Patterns of coevolution between variable regions may reflect the consequences of selection acting on the incorporation of slippage-derived sequences across the gene.

  13. The intracellular parasite Toxoplasma gondii depends on the synthesis of long chain and very long-chain unsaturated fatty acids not supplied by the host cell

    PubMed Central

    Ramakrishnan, Srinivasan; Docampo, Melissa D.; MacRae, James I.; Ralton, Julie E.; Rupasinghe, Thusitha; McConville, Malcolm J.; Striepen, Boris

    2015-01-01

    SUMMARY Apicomplexa are parasitic protozoa that cause important human diseases including malaria, cryptosporidiosis and toxoplasmosis. The replication of these parasites within their target host cell is dependent on both salvage as well as de novo synthesis of fatty acids. In T. gondii, fatty acid synthesis via the apicoplast-localized FASII is essential for pathogenesis, while the role of two other fatty acid biosynthetic complexes remains unclear. Here we demonstrate that the ER-localized fatty acid elongation (ELO) is essential for parasite growth. Conditional knock-down of the non-redundant hydroxyacyl-CoA dehydratase and enoyl-CoA reductase enzymes in the ELO pathway severely repressed intracellular parasite growth. 13C-glucose and 13C-acetate labeling and comprehensive lipidomic analyses of these mutants showed a selective defect in synthesis of unsaturated long and very long chain fatty acids (LCFAs and VLCFAs) and depletion of phosphatidylinositol and phosphatidylethanolamine species containing unsaturated LCFAs and VLCFAs. This requirement for ELO pathway was by-passed by supplementing the media with specific fatty acids, indicating active, but inefficient import of host fatty acids. Our experiments highlight a gap between the fatty acid needs of the parasite and availability of specific fatty acids in the host cell that the parasite has to close using a dedicated synthesis and modification pathway. PMID:25825226

  14. Dynamics of the Toxoplasma gondii inner membrane complex.

    PubMed

    Ouologuem, Dinkorma T; Roos, David S

    2014-08-01

    Unlike most cells, protozoa in the phylum Apicomplexa divide by a distinctive process in which multiple daughters are assembled within the mother (schizogony or endodyogeny), using scaffolding known as the inner membrane complex (IMC). The IMC underlies the plasma membrane during interphase, but new daughters develop in the cytoplasm, as cytoskeletal filaments associate with flattened membrane cisternae (alveolae), which elongate rapidly to encapsulate subcellular organelles. Newly assembled daughters acquire their plasma membrane as they emerge from the mother, leaving behind vestiges of the maternal cell. Although the maternal plasma membrane remains intact throughout this process, the maternal IMC disappears - is it degraded, or recycled to form the daughter IMC? Exploiting fluorescently tagged IMC markers, we have used live-cell imaging, fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) and mEos2 photoactivation to monitor the dynamics of IMC biogenesis and turnover during the replication of Toxoplasma gondii tachyzoites. These studies reveal that the formation of the T. gondii IMC involves two distinct steps - de novo assembly during daughter IMC elongation within the mother cell, followed by recycling of maternal IMC membranes after the emergence of daughters from the mother cell.

  15. Purification, crystallization and preliminary X-ray diffraction analysis of inner membrane complex (IMC) subcompartment protein 1 (ISP1) from Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Tonkin, Michelle L; Brown, Shannon; Beck, Josh R; Bradley, Peter J; Boulanger, Martin J

    2012-07-01

    The protozoan parasites of the Apicomplexa phylum are devastating global pathogens. Their success is largely due to phylum-specific proteins found in specialized organelles and cellular structures. The inner membrane complex (IMC) is a unique apicomplexan structure that is essential for motility, invasion and replication. The IMC subcompartment proteins (ISP) have recently been identified in Toxoplasma gondii and shown to be critical for replication, although their specific mechanisms are unknown. Structural characterization of TgISP1 was pursued in order to identify the fold adopted by the ISPs and to generate detailed insight into how this family of proteins functions during replication. An N-terminally truncated form of TgISP1 was purified from Escherichia coli, crystallized and subjected to X-ray diffraction analysis. Two crystal forms of TgISP1 belonging to space groups P4(1)32 or P4(3)32 and P2(1)2(1)2(1) diffracted to 2.05 and 2.1 Å resolution, respectively.

  16. A novel family of Toxoplasma IMC proteins displays a hierarchical organization and functions in coordinating parasite division.

    PubMed

    Beck, Josh R; Rodriguez-Fernandez, Imilce A; de Leon, Jessica Cruz; Huynh, My-Hang; Carruthers, Vern B; Morrissette, Naomi S; Bradley, Peter J

    2010-09-09

    Apicomplexans employ a peripheral membrane system called the inner membrane complex (IMC) for critical processes such as host cell invasion and daughter cell formation. We have identified a family of proteins that define novel sub-compartments of the Toxoplasma gondii IMC. These IMC Sub-compartment Proteins, ISP1, 2 and 3, are conserved throughout the Apicomplexa, but do not appear to be present outside the phylum. ISP1 localizes to the apical cap portion of the IMC, while ISP2 localizes to a central IMC region and ISP3 localizes to a central plus basal region of the complex. Targeting of all three ISPs is dependent upon N-terminal residues predicted for coordinated myristoylation and palmitoylation. Surprisingly, we show that disruption of ISP1 results in a dramatic relocalization of ISP2 and ISP3 to the apical cap. Although the N-terminal region of ISP1 is necessary and sufficient for apical cap targeting, exclusion of other family members requires the remaining C-terminal region of the protein. This gate-keeping function of ISP1 reveals an unprecedented mechanism of interactive and hierarchical targeting of proteins to establish these unique sub-compartments in the Toxoplasma IMC. Finally, we show that loss of ISP2 results in severe defects in daughter cell formation during endodyogeny, indicating a role for the ISP proteins in coordinating this unique process of Toxoplasma replication.

  17. Unique apicomplexan IMC sub-compartment proteins are early markers for apical polarity in the malaria parasite.

    PubMed

    Poulin, Benoit; Patzewitz, Eva-Maria; Brady, Declan; Silvie, Olivier; Wright, Megan H; Ferguson, David J P; Wall, Richard J; Whipple, Sarah; Guttery, David S; Tate, Edward W; Wickstead, Bill; Holder, Anthony A; Tewari, Rita

    2013-01-01

    The phylum Apicomplexa comprises over 5000 intracellular protozoan parasites, including Plasmodium and Toxoplasma, that are clinically important pathogens affecting humans and livestock. Malaria parasites belonging to the genus Plasmodium possess a pellicle comprised of a plasmalemma and inner membrane complex (IMC), which is implicated in parasite motility and invasion. Using live cell imaging and reverse genetics in the rodent malaria model P. berghei, we localise two unique IMC sub-compartment proteins (ISPs) and examine their role in defining apical polarity during zygote (ookinete) development. We show that these proteins localise to the anterior apical end of the parasite where IMC organisation is initiated, and are expressed at all developmental stages, especially those that are invasive. Both ISP proteins are N-myristoylated, phosphorylated and membrane-bound. Gene disruption studies suggest that ISP1 is likely essential for parasite development, whereas ISP3 is not. However, an absence of ISP3 alters the apical localisation of ISP1 in all invasive stages including ookinetes and sporozoites, suggesting a coordinated function for these proteins in the organisation of apical polarity in the parasite.

  18. Chromerid genomes reveal the evolutionary path from photosynthetic algae to obligate intracellular parasites

    PubMed Central

    Woo, Yong H; Ansari, Hifzur; Otto, Thomas D; Klinger, Christen M; Kolisko, Martin; Michálek, Jan; Saxena, Alka; Shanmugam, Dhanasekaran; Tayyrov, Annageldi; Veluchamy, Alaguraj; Ali, Shahjahan; Bernal, Axel; del Campo, Javier; Cihlář, Jaromír; Flegontov, Pavel; Gornik, Sebastian G; Hajdušková, Eva; Horák, Aleš; Janouškovec, Jan; Katris, Nicholas J; Mast, Fred D; Miranda-Saavedra, Diego; Mourier, Tobias; Naeem, Raeece; Nair, Mridul; Panigrahi, Aswini K; Rawlings, Neil D; Padron-Regalado, Eriko; Ramaprasad, Abhinay; Samad, Nadira; Tomčala, Aleš; Wilkes, Jon; Neafsey, Daniel E; Doerig, Christian; Bowler, Chris; Keeling, Patrick J; Roos, David S; Dacks, Joel B; Templeton, Thomas J; Waller, Ross F; Lukeš, Julius; Oborník, Miroslav; Pain, Arnab

    2015-01-01

    The eukaryotic phylum Apicomplexa encompasses thousands of obligate intracellular parasites of humans and animals with immense socio-economic and health impacts. We sequenced nuclear genomes of Chromera velia and Vitrella brassicaformis, free-living non-parasitic photosynthetic algae closely related to apicomplexans. Proteins from key metabolic pathways and from the endomembrane trafficking systems associated with a free-living lifestyle have been progressively and non-randomly lost during adaptation to parasitism. The free-living ancestor contained a broad repertoire of genes many of which were repurposed for parasitic processes, such as extracellular proteins, components of a motility apparatus, and DNA- and RNA-binding protein families. Based on transcriptome analyses across 36 environmental conditions, Chromera orthologs of apicomplexan invasion-related motility genes were co-regulated with genes encoding the flagellar apparatus, supporting the functional contribution of flagella to the evolution of invasion machinery. This study provides insights into how obligate parasites with diverse life strategies arose from a once free-living phototrophic marine alga. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.06974.001 PMID:26175406

  19. A global map of genetic diversity in Babesia microti reveals strong population structure and identifies variants associated with clinical relapse.

    PubMed

    Lemieux, Jacob E; Tran, Alice D; Freimark, Lisa; Schaffner, Stephen F; Goethert, Heidi; Andersen, Kristian G; Bazner, Suzane; Li, Amy; McGrath, Graham; Sloan, Lynne; Vannier, Edouard; Milner, Dan; Pritt, Bobbi; Rosenberg, Eric; Telford, Sam; Bailey, Jeffrey A; Sabeti, Pardis C

    2016-01-01

    Human babesiosis caused by Babesia microti is an emerging tick-borne zoonosis of increasing importance due to its rising incidence and expanding geographic range(1). Infection with this organism, an intraerythrocytic parasite of the phylum Apicomplexa, causes a febrile syndrome similar to malaria(2). Relapsing disease is common among immunocompromised and asplenic individuals(3,4) and drug resistance has recently been reported(5). To investigate the origin and genetic diversity of this parasite, we sequenced the complete genomes of 42 B. microti samples from around the world, including deep coverage of clinical infections at endemic sites in the continental USA. Samples from the continental USA segregate into a Northeast lineage and a Midwest lineage, with subsequent divergence of subpopulations along geographic lines. We identify parasite variants that associate with relapsing disease, including amino acid substitutions in the atovaquone-binding regions of cytochrome b (cytb) and the azithromycin-binding region of ribosomal protein subunit L4 (rpl4). Our results shed light on the origin, diversity and evolution of B. microti, suggest possible mechanisms for clinical relapse, and create the foundation for further research on this emerging pathogen. PMID:27572973

  20. Protective effect of intranasal immunization with Neospora caninum membrane antigens against murine neosporosis established through the gastrointestinal tract

    PubMed Central

    Ferreirinha, Pedro; Dias, Joana; Correia, Alexandra; Pérez-Cabezas, Begoña; Santos, Carlos; Teixeira, Luzia; Ribeiro, Adília; Rocha, António; Vilanova, Manuel

    2014-01-01

    Neospora caninum is an Apicomplexa parasite that in the last two decades was acknowledged as the main pathogenic agent responsible for economic losses in the cattle industry. In the present study, the effectiveness of intranasal immunization with N. caninum membrane antigens plus CpG adjuvant was assessed in a murine model of intragastrically established neosporosis. Immunized mice presented a lower parasitic burden in the brain on infection with 5 × 107 tachyzoites, showing that significant protection was achieved by this immunization strategy. Intestinal IgA antibodies raised by immunization markedly agglutinated live N. caninum tachyzoites whereas previous opsonization with IgG antibodies purified from immunized mice sera reduced parasite survival within macrophage cells. Although an IgG1 : IgG2a ratio < 1 was detected in the immunized mice before and after infection, indicative of a predominant T helper type 1 immune response, no increased production of interferon-γ was detected in the spleen or mesenteric lymph nodes of the immunized mice. Altogether, these results show that mucosal immunization with N. caninum membrane proteins plus CpG adjuvant protect against intragastrically established neosporosis and indicate that parasite-specific mucosal and circulating antibodies have a protective role against this parasitic infection. PMID:24128071

  1. Towards a molecular understanding of the apicomplexan actin motor: on a road to novel targets for malaria remedies?

    SciTech Connect

    Kumpula, Esa-Pekka; Kursula, Inari

    2015-04-16

    In this review, current structural understanding of the apicomplexan glideosome and actin regulation is described. Apicomplexan parasites are the causative agents of notorious human and animal diseases that give rise to considerable human suffering and economic losses worldwide. The most prominent parasites of this phylum are the malaria-causing Plasmodium species, which are widespread in tropical and subtropical regions, and Toxoplasma gondii, which infects one third of the world’s population. These parasites share a common form of gliding motility which relies on an actin–myosin motor. The components of this motor and the actin-regulatory proteins in Apicomplexa have unique features compared with all other eukaryotes. This, together with the crucial roles of these proteins, makes them attractive targets for structure-based drug design. In recent years, several structures of glideosome components, in particular of actins and actin regulators from apicomplexan parasites, have been determined, which will hopefully soon allow the creation of a complete molecular picture of the parasite actin–myosin motor and its regulatory machinery. Here, current knowledge of the function of this motor is reviewed from a structural perspective.

  2. Phylogenetic relationship of Hepatozoon blood parasites found in snakes from Africa, America and Asia.

    PubMed

    Haklová, B; Majláthová, V; Majláth, I; Harris, D J; Petrilla, V; Litschka-Koen, T; Oros, M; Peťko, B

    2014-03-01

    The blood parasites from the genus Hepatozoon Miller, 1908 (Apicomplexa: Adeleida: Hepatozoidae) represent the most common intracellular protozoan parasites found in snakes. In the present study, we examined 209 individuals of snakes, from different zoogeographical regions (Africa, America, Asia and Europe), for the occurrence of blood parasites using both molecular and microscopic examination methods, and assess phylogenetic relationships of all Hepatozoon parasites from snakes for the first time. In total, 178 blood smears obtained from 209 individuals, representing 40 species, were examined, from which Hepatozoon unicellular parasites were found in 26 samples (14·6% prevalence). Out of 180 samples tested by molecular method polymerase chain reaction (PCR), the presence of parasites was observed in 21 individuals (prevalence 11·6%): 14 snakes from Africa belonging to six genera (Dendroaspis, Dispholidus, Mehelya, Naja, Philothamnus and Python), five snakes from Asia from the genus Morelia and two snakes from America, from two genera (Coluber and Corallus). The intensity of infection varied from one to 1433 infected cells per 10 000 erythrocytes. Results of phylogenetic analyses (Bayesian and Maximum Likelihood) revealed the existence of five haplotypes divided into four main lineages. The present data also indicate neither geographical pattern of studied Hepatozoon sp., nor congruency in the host association. PMID:24553081

  3. Molecular assessment of apicomplexan parasites in the snake Psammophis from North Africa: do multiple parasite lineages reflect the final vertebrate host diet?

    PubMed

    Tomé, Beatriz; Maia, João P M C; Harris, D James

    2013-10-01

    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 Psammophis 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. PMID:23537006

  4. Subcompartmentalisation of proteins in the rhoptries correlates with ordered events of erythrocyte invasion by the blood stage malaria parasite.

    PubMed

    Zuccala, Elizabeth S; Gout, Alexander M; Dekiwadia, Chaitali; Marapana, Danushka S; Angrisano, Fiona; Turnbull, Lynne; Riglar, David T; Rogers, Kelly L; Whitchurch, Cynthia B; Ralph, Stuart A; Speed, Terence P; Baum, Jake

    2012-01-01

    Host cell infection by apicomplexan parasites plays an essential role in lifecycle progression for these obligate intracellular pathogens. For most species, including the etiological agents of malaria and toxoplasmosis, infection requires active host-cell invasion dependent on formation of a tight junction - the organising interface between parasite and host cell during entry. Formation of this structure is not, however, shared across all Apicomplexa or indeed all parasite lifecycle stages. Here, using an in silico integrative genomic search and endogenous gene-tagging strategy, we sought to characterise proteins that function specifically during junction-dependent invasion, a class of proteins we term invasins to distinguish them from adhesins that function in species specific host-cell recognition. High-definition imaging of tagged Plasmodium falciparum invasins localised proteins to multiple cellular compartments of the blood stage merozoite. This includes several that localise to distinct subcompartments within the rhoptries. While originating from the same organelle, however, each has very different dynamics during invasion. Apical Sushi Protein and Rhoptry Neck protein 2 release early, following the junction, whilst a novel rhoptry protein PFF0645c releases only after invasion is complete. This supports the idea that organisation of proteins within a secretory organelle determines the order and destination of protein secretion and provides a localisation-based classification strategy for predicting invasin function during apicomplexan parasite invasion. PMID:23049965

  5. CenH3 evolution reflects meiotic symmetry as predicted by the centromere drive model.

    PubMed

    Zedek, František; Bureš, Petr

    2016-09-15

    The centromere drive model explaining rapid evolution of eukaryotic centromeres predicts higher frequency of positive selection acting on centromeric histone H3 (CenH3) in clades with asymmetric meiosis compared to the clades with only symmetric meiosis. However, despite the impression one might get from the literature, this key prediction of the centromere drive model has not only never been confirmed, but it has never been tested, because all the previous studies dealt only with the presence or absence instead of the frequency of positive selection. To provide evidence for or against different frequencies of positively selected CenH3 in asymmetrics and symmetrics, we have inferred the selective pressures acting on CenH3 in seventeen eukaryotic clades, including plants, animals, fungi, ciliates and apicomplexa, using codon-substitution models, and compared the inferred frequencies between asymmetrics and symmetrics in a quantitative manner. We have found that CenH3 has been evolving adaptively much more frequently in clades with asymmetric meiosis compared with clades displaying only symmetric meiosis which confirms the prediction of centromere drive model. Our findings indicate that the evolution of asymmetric meiosis required CenH3 to evolve adaptively more often to counterbalance the negative consequences of centromere drive.

  6. Atomic resolution insight into host cell recognition by Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Blumenschein, Tharin M A; Friedrich, Nikolas; Childs, Robert A; Saouros, Savvas; Carpenter, Elisabeth P; Campanero-Rhodes, Maria A; Simpson, Peter; Chai, Wengang; Koutroukides, Theodoros; Blackman, Michael J; Feizi, Ten; Soldati-Favre, Dominique; Matthews, Stephen

    2007-06-01

    The obligate intracellular parasite Toxoplasma gondii, a member of the phylum Apicomplexa that includes Plasmodium spp., is one of the most widespread parasites and the causative agent of toxoplasmosis. Micronemal proteins (MICs) are released onto the parasite surface just before invasion of host cells and play important roles in host cell recognition, attachment and penetration. Here, we report the atomic structure for a key MIC, TgMIC1, and reveal a novel cell-binding motif called the microneme adhesive repeat (MAR). Using glycoarray analyses, we identified a novel interaction with sialylated oligosaccharides that resolves several prevailing misconceptions concerning TgMIC1. Structural studies of various complexes between TgMIC1 and sialylated oligosaccharides provide high-resolution insights into the recognition of sialylated oligosaccharides by a parasite surface protein. We observe that MAR domains exist in tandem repeats, which provide a highly specialized structure for glycan discrimination. Our work uncovers new features of parasite-receptor interactions at the early stages of host cell invasion, which will assist the design of new therapeutic strategies. PMID:17491595

  7. Galactose recognition by the apicomplexan parasite Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Marchant, Jan; Cowper, Ben; Liu, Yan; Lai, Livia; Pinzan, Camila; Marq, Jean Baptiste; Friedrich, Nikolas; Sawmynaden, Kovilen; Liew, Lloyd; Chai, Wengang; Childs, Robert A; Saouros, Savvas; Simpson, Peter; Roque Barreira, Maria Cristina; Feizi, Ten; Soldati-Favre, Dominique; Matthews, Stephen

    2012-05-11

    Toxosplasma gondii is the model parasite of the phylum Apicomplexa, which contains numerous obligate intracellular parasites of medical and veterinary importance, including Eimeria, Sarcocystis, Cryptosporidium, Cyclospora, and Plasmodium species. Members of this phylum actively enter host cells by a multistep process with the help of microneme protein (MIC) complexes that play important roles in motility, host cell attachment, moving junction formation, and invasion. T. gondii (Tg)MIC1-4-6 complex is the most extensively investigated microneme complex, which contributes to host cell recognition and attachment via the action of TgMIC1, a sialic acid-binding adhesin. Here, we report the structure of TgMIC4 and reveal its carbohydrate-binding specificity to a variety of galactose-containing carbohydrate ligands. The lectin is composed of six apple domains in which the fifth domain displays a potent galactose-binding activity, and which is cleaved from the complex during parasite invasion. We propose that galactose recognition by TgMIC4 may compromise host protection from galectin-mediated activation of the host immune system. PMID:22399295

  8. A member of the HSP90 family from ovine Babesia in China: molecular characterization, phylogenetic analysis and antigenicity.

    PubMed

    Guan, Guiquan; Liu, Junlong; Liu, Aihong; Li, Youquan; Niu, Qingli; Gao, Jinliang; Luo, Jianxun; Chauvin, Alain; Yin, Hong; Moreau, Emmanuelle

    2015-09-01

    Heat shock protein 90 (HSP90) is a key component of the molecular chaperone complex essential for activating many signalling proteins involved in the development and progression of pathogenic cellular transformation. A Hsp90 gene (BQHsp90) was cloned and characterized from Babesia sp. BQ1 (Lintan), an ovine Babesia isolate belonging to Babesia motasi-like group, by screening a cDNA expression library and performing rapid amplification of cDNA ends. The full-length cDNA of BQHsp90 is 2399 bp with an open reading frame of 2154 bp encoding a predicted 83 kDa polypeptide with 717 amino acid residues. It shows significant homology and similar structural characteristics to Hsp90 of other apicomplex organisms. Phylogenetic analysis, based on the HSP90 amino acid sequences, showed that the Babesia genus is clearly separated from other apicomplexa genera. Five Chinese ovine Babesia isolates were divided into 2 phylogenetic clusters, namely Babesia sp. Xinjiang (previously designated a new species) cluster and B. motasi-like cluster which could be further divided into 2 subclusters (Babesia sp. BQ1 (Lintan)/Babesia sp. Tianzhu and Babesia sp. BQ1 (Ningxian)/Babesia sp. Hebei). Finally, the antigenicity of rBQHSP90 protein from prokaryotic expression was also evaluated using western blot and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).

  9. Targeted proteomic dissection of Toxoplasma cytoskeleton sub-compartments using MORN1

    PubMed Central

    Lorestani, Alexander; Ivey, F. Douglas; Thirugnanam, Sivasakthivel; Busby, Michele A.; Marth, Gabor T.; Cheeseman, Iain M.; Gubbels, Marc-Jan

    2013-01-01

    Summary The basal complex in Toxoplasma functions as the contractile ring in the cell division process. Basal complex contraction tapers the daughter cytoskeleton toward the basal end and is required for daughter segregation. We have previously shown that the protein MORN1 is essential for basal complex assembly and likely acts as a scaffolding protein. To further our understanding of the basal complex we combined subcellular fractionation with an affinity purification of the MORN1 complex and identified its protein composition. We identified two new components of the basal complex, one of which uniquely associated with the basal complex in mature parasites, the first of its kind. In addition, we identified several other novel cytoskeleton proteins with different spatiotemporal dynamics throughout cell division. Since many of these proteins are unique to Apicomplexa this study significantly contributes to the annotation of their unique cytoskeleton. Furthermore we show that G-actin binding protein TgCAP is localized at the apical cap region in intracellular parasites, but quickly re-distributes to a cytoplasmic localization pattern upon egress. PMID:23027733

  10. Molecular Characterization of Toxoplasma gondii Formin 3, an Actin Nucleator Dispensable for Tachyzoite Growth and Motility

    PubMed Central

    Daher, Wassim; Klages, Natacha; Carlier, Marie-France

    2012-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii belongs to the phylum Apicomplexa, a group of obligate intracellular parasites that rely on gliding motility to enter host cells. Drugs interfering with the actin cytoskeleton block parasite motility, host cell invasion, and egress from infected cells. Myosin A, profilin, formin 1, formin 2, and actin-depolymerizing factor have all been implicated in parasite motility, yet little is known regarding the importance of actin polymerization and other myosins for the remaining steps of the parasite lytic cycle. Here we establish that T. gondii formin 3 (TgFRM3), a newly described formin homology 2 domain (FH2)-containing protein, binds to Toxoplasma actin and nucleates rabbit actin assembly in vitro. TgFRM3 expressed as a transgene exhibits a patchy localization at several distinct structures within the parasite. Disruption of the TgFRM3 gene by double homologous recombination in a ku80-ko strain reveals no vital function for tachyzoite propagation in vitro, which is consistent with its weak level of expression in this life stage. Conditional stabilization of truncated forms of TgFRM3 suggests that different regions of the molecule contribute to distinct localizations. Moreover, expression of TgFRM3 lacking the C-terminal domain severely affects parasite growth and replication. This work provides a first insight into how this specialized formin, restricted to the group of coccidia, completes its actin-nucleating activity. PMID:22210829

  11. Subcompartmentalisation of Proteins in the Rhoptries Correlates with Ordered Events of Erythrocyte Invasion by the Blood Stage Malaria Parasite

    PubMed Central

    Zuccala, Elizabeth S.; Gout, Alexander M.; Dekiwadia, Chaitali; Marapana, Danushka S.; Angrisano, Fiona; Turnbull, Lynne; Riglar, David T.; Rogers, Kelly L.; Whitchurch, Cynthia B.; Ralph, Stuart A.; Speed, Terence P.; Baum, Jake

    2012-01-01

    Host cell infection by apicomplexan parasites plays an essential role in lifecycle progression for these obligate intracellular pathogens. For most species, including the etiological agents of malaria and toxoplasmosis, infection requires active host-cell invasion dependent on formation of a tight junction – the organising interface between parasite and host cell during entry. Formation of this structure is not, however, shared across all Apicomplexa or indeed all parasite lifecycle stages. Here, using an in silico integrative genomic search and endogenous gene-tagging strategy, we sought to characterise proteins that function specifically during junction-dependent invasion, a class of proteins we term invasins to distinguish them from adhesins that function in species specific host-cell recognition. High-definition imaging of tagged Plasmodium falciparum invasins localised proteins to multiple cellular compartments of the blood stage merozoite. This includes several that localise to distinct subcompartments within the rhoptries. While originating from the same organelle, however, each has very different dynamics during invasion. Apical Sushi Protein and Rhoptry Neck protein 2 release early, following the junction, whilst a novel rhoptry protein PFF0645c releases only after invasion is complete. This supports the idea that organisation of proteins within a secretory organelle determines the order and destination of protein secretion and provides a localisation-based classification strategy for predicting invasin function during apicomplexan parasite invasion. PMID:23049965

  12. Toxoplasma gondii transmembrane microneme proteins and their modular design

    PubMed Central

    Sheiner, Lilach; Santos, Joana M.; Klages, Natacha; Parussini, Fabiola; Jemmely, Noelle; Friedrich, Nikolas; Ward, Gary E.; Soldati-Favre, Dominique

    2010-01-01

    Summary Host cell invasion by the Apicomplexa critically relies on regulated secretion of transmembrane micronemal proteins (TM-MICs). Toxoplasma gondii possesses functionally non-redundant MICs complexes that participate in gliding motility, host cell attachment, moving junction formation, rhoptry secretion and invasion. The TM-MICs are released onto the parasite’s surface as complexes capable of interacting with host cell receptors. Additionally, TgMIC2 simultaneously connects to the actomyosin system via binding to aldolase. During invasion these adhesive complexes are shed from the surface notably via intramembrane cleavage of the TM-MICs by a rhomboid protease. Some TM-MICs act as escorters and assure trafficking of the complexes to the micronemes. We have investigated the properties of TgMIC6, TgMIC8, TgMIC8.2, TgAMA1 and the new micronemal protein TgMIC16 with respect to interaction with aldolase, susceptibility to rhomboid cleavage and presence of trafficking signals. We conclude that several TM-MICs lack targeting information within their C-terminal domains, indicating that trafficking depends on yet unidentified proteins interacting with their ectodomains. Most TM-MICs serve as substrates for a rhomboid protease and some of them are able to bind to aldolase. We also show that the residues responsible for binding to aldolase are essential for TgAMA1 but dispensable forTgMIC6 function during invasion. PMID:20545864

  13. Genetic Diversity of Toxoplasma gondii Strains from Different Hosts and Geographical Regions by Sequence Analysis of GRA20 Gene.

    PubMed

    Ning, Hong-Rui; Huang, Si-Yang; Wang, Jin-Lei; Xu, Qian-Ming; Zhu, Xing-Quan

    2015-06-01

    Toxoplasma gondii is a eukaryotic parasite of the phylum Apicomplexa, which infects all warm-blood animals, including humans. In the present study, we examined sequence variation in dense granule 20 (GRA20) genes among T. gondii isolates collected from different hosts and geographical regions worldwide. The complete GRA20 genes were amplified from 16 T. gondii isolates using PCR, sequence were analyzed, and phylogenetic reconstruction was analyzed by maximum parsimony (MP) and maximum likelihood (ML) methods. The results showed that the complete GRA20 gene sequence was 1,586 bp in length among all the isolates used in this study, and the sequence variations in nucleotides were 0-7.9% among all strains. However, removing the type III strains (CTG, VEG), the sequence variations became very low, only 0-0.7%. These results indicated that the GRA20 sequence in type III was more divergence. Phylogenetic analysis of GRA20 sequences using MP and ML methods can differentiate 2 major clonal lineage types (type I and type III) into their respective clusters, indicating the GRA20 gene may represent a novel genetic marker for intraspecific phylogenetic analyses of T. gondii. PMID:26174830

  14. Comparison of an ELISA assay for the detection of adhesive/invasive Neospora caninum tachyzoites.

    PubMed

    Pereira, Luiz Miguel; Yatsuda, Ana Patrícia

    2014-03-01

    Neospora caninum belongs to the phylum Apicomplexa, the causative agent of neosporosis, which leads to economic impacts on cattle production. A common feature among apicomplexan parasites is the invasive process driven mostly by the parasite. As a first evaluation of candidate molecules that play a possible role by interfering in this invasive process, the in vitro invasion assay is a fast and direct way to screen future agonists or antagonists. This work involved the development of a new cell culture ELISA and transient β-galactosidase activity applied to the semi-quantitative detection of N. caninum in Vero cell culture. Cell culture ELISA is based on histochemistry and immunology, resulting in a colorimetric reaction. The β-galactosidase activity was obtained by the transient transfection of the lacZ gene under control of RPS13 promoter of N. caninum. These methods were used to evaluate the effects of temperature (37°C and 85°C) on the invasion and adhesion of tachyzoites. The three tested methods (real time PCR, β-galactosidase activity and ELISA) showed a similar pattern, indicating that different methods may be complementary. PMID:24728359

  15. Apicoplast isoprenoid precursor synthesis and the molecular basis of fosmidomycin resistance in Toxoplasma gondii

    PubMed Central

    Nair, Sethu C.; Brooks, Carrie F.; Goodman, Christopher D.; Strurm, Angelika; McFadden, Geoffrey I.; Sundriyal, Sandeep; Anglin, Justin L.; Song, Yongcheng; Moreno, Silvia N.J.

    2011-01-01

    Apicomplexa are important pathogens that include the causative agents of malaria, toxoplasmosis, and cryptosporidiosis. Apicomplexan parasites contain a relict chloroplast, the apicoplast. The apicoplast is indispensable and an attractive drug target. The apicoplast is home to a 1-deoxy-d-xylulose-5-phosphate (DOXP) pathway for the synthesis of isoprenoid precursors. This pathway is believed to be the most conserved function of the apicoplast, and fosmidomycin, a specific inhibitor of the pathway, is an effective antimalarial. Surprisingly, fosmidomycin has no effect on most other apicomplexans. Using Toxoplasma gondii, we establish that the pathway is essential in parasites that are highly fosmidomycin resistant. We define the molecular basis of resistance and susceptibility, experimentally testing various host and parasite contributions in T. gondii and Plasmodium. We demonstrate that in T. gondii the parasite plasma membrane is a critical barrier to drug uptake. In strong support of this hypothesis, we engineer de novo drug-sensitive T. gondii parasites by heterologous expression of a bacterial transporter protein. Mice infected with these transgenic parasites can now be cured from a lethal challenge with fosmidomycin. We propose that the varied extent of metabolite exchange between host and parasite is a crucial determinator of drug susceptibility and a predictor of future resistance. PMID:21690250

  16. Species formation by host shifting in avian malaria parasites

    PubMed Central

    Ricklefs, Robert E.; Outlaw, Diana C.; Svensson-Coelho, Maria; Medeiros, Matthew C. I.; Ellis, Vincenzo A.; Latta, Steven

    2014-01-01

    The malaria parasites (Apicomplexa: Haemosporida) of birds are believed to have diversified across the avian host phylogeny well after the origin of most major host lineages. Although many symbionts with direct transmission codiversify with their hosts, mechanisms of species formation in vector-borne parasites, including the role of host shifting, are poorly understood. Here, we examine the hosts of sister lineages in a phylogeny of 181 putative species of malaria parasites of New World terrestrial birds to determine the role of shifts between host taxa in the formation of new parasite species. We find that host shifting, often across host genera and families, is the rule. Sympatric speciation by host shifting would require local reproductive isolation as a prerequisite to divergent selection, but this mechanism is not supported by the generalized host-biting behavior of most vectors of avian malaria parasites. Instead, the geographic distribution of individual parasite lineages in diverse hosts suggests that species formation is predominantly allopatric and involves host expansion followed by local host–pathogen coevolution and secondary sympatry, resulting in local shifting of parasite lineages across hosts. PMID:25271324

  17. A Transmission Model for the Ecology of an Avian Blood Parasite in a Temperate Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Murdock, Courtney C.; Foufopoulos, Johannes; Simon, Carl P.

    2013-01-01

    Most of our knowledge about avian haemosporidian parasites comes from the Hawaiian archipelago, where recently introduced Plasmodiumrelictum has contributed to the extinction of many endemic avian species. While the ecology of invasive malaria is reasonably understood, the ecology of endemic haemosporidian infection in mainland systems is poorly understood, even though it is the rule rather than the exception. We develop a mathematical model to explore and identify the ecological factors that most influence transmission of the common avian parasite, Leucocytozoonfringillinarum (Apicomplexa). The model was parameterized from White-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichialeucophrys) and S. silvestre / craigi black fly populations breeding in an alpine ecosystem. We identify and examine the importance of altricial nestlings, the seasonal relapse of infected birds for parasite persistence across breeding seasons, and potential impacts of seasonal changes in black fly emergence on parasite prevalence in a high elevation temperate system. We also use the model to identify and estimate the parameters most influencing transmission dynamics. Our analysis found that relapse of adult birds and young of the year birds were crucial for parasite persistence across multiple seasons. However, distinguishing between nude nestlings and feathered young of the year was unnecessary. Finally, due to model sensitivity to many black fly parameters, parasite prevalence and sparrow recruitment may be most affected by seasonal changes in environmental temperature driving shifts in black fly emergence and gonotrophic cycles. PMID:24073288

  18. Characterization of a serine hydrolase targeted by acyl-protein thioesterase inhibitors in Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Kemp, Louise E; Rusch, Marion; Adibekian, Alexander; Bullen, Hayley E; Graindorge, Arnault; Freymond, Céline; Rottmann, Matthias; Braun-Breton, Catherine; Baumeister, Stefan; Porfetye, Arthur T; Vetter, Ingrid R; Hedberg, Christian; Soldati-Favre, Dominique

    2013-09-20

    In eukaryotic organisms, cysteine palmitoylation is an important reversible modification that impacts protein targeting, folding, stability, and interactions with partners. Evidence suggests that protein palmitoylation contributes to key biological processes in Apicomplexa with the recent palmitome of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum reporting over 400 substrates that are modified with palmitate by a broad range of protein S-acyl transferases. Dynamic palmitoylation cycles require the action of an acyl-protein thioesterase (APT) that cleaves palmitate from substrates and conveys reversibility to this posttranslational modification. In this work, we identified candidates for APT activity in Toxoplasma gondii. Treatment of parasites with low micromolar concentrations of β-lactone- or triazole urea-based inhibitors that target human APT1 showed varied detrimental effects at multiple steps of the parasite lytic cycle. The use of an activity-based probe in combination with these inhibitors revealed the existence of several serine hydrolases that are targeted by APT1 inhibitors. The active serine hydrolase, TgASH1, identified as the homologue closest to human APT1 and APT2, was characterized further. Biochemical analysis of TgASH1 indicated that this enzyme cleaves substrates with a specificity similar to APTs, and homology modeling points toward an APT-like enzyme. TgASH1 is dispensable for parasite survival, which indicates that the severe effects observed with the β-lactone inhibitors are caused by the inhibition of non-TgASH1 targets. Other ASH candidates for APT activity were functionally characterized, and one of them was found to be resistant to gene disruption due to the potential essential nature of the protein. PMID:23913689

  19. A survey of innovation through duplication in the reduced genomes of twelve parasites.

    PubMed

    DeBarry, Jeremy D; Kissinger, Jessica C

    2014-01-01

    We characterize the prevalence, distribution, divergence, and putative functions of detectable two-copy paralogs and segmental duplications in the Apicomplexa, a phylum of parasitic protists. Apicomplexans are mostly obligate intracellular parasites responsible for human and animal diseases (e.g. malaria and toxoplasmosis). Gene loss is a major force in the phylum. Genomes are small and protein-encoding gene repertoires are reduced. Despite this genomic streamlining, duplications and gene family amplifications are present. The potential for innovation introduced by duplications is of particular interest. We compared genomes of twelve apicomplexans across four lineages and used orthology and genome cartography to map distributions of duplications against genome architectures. Segmental duplications appear limited to five species. Where present, they correspond to regions enriched for multi-copy and species-specific genes, pointing toward roles in adaptation and innovation. We found a phylum-wide association of duplications with dynamic chromosome regions and syntenic breakpoints. Trends in the distribution of duplicated genes indicate that recent, species-specific duplicates are often tandem while most others have been dispersed by genome rearrangements. These trends show a relationship between genome architecture and gene duplication. Functional analysis reveals: proteases, which are vital to a parasitic lifecycle, to be prominent in putative recent duplications; a pair of paralogous genes in Toxoplasma gondii previously shown to produce the rate-limiting step in dopamine synthesis in mammalian cells, a possible link to the modification of host behavior; and phylum-wide differences in expression and subcellular localization, indicative of modes of divergence. We have uncovered trends in multiple modes of duplicate divergence including sequence, intron content, expression, subcellular localization, and functions of putative recent duplicates that highlight the role

  20. Multiple functionally redundant signals mediate targeting to the apicoplast in the apicomplexan parasite Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Harb, Omar S; Chatterjee, Bithi; Fraunholz, Martin J; Crawford, Michael J; Nishi, Manami; Roos, David S

    2004-06-01

    Most species of the protozoan phylum Apicomplexa harbor an endosymbiotic organelle--the apicoplast--acquired when an ancestral parasite engulfed a eukaryotic plastid-containing alga. Several hundred proteins are encoded in the parasite nucleus and are posttranslationally targeted to the apicoplast by a distinctive bipartite signal. The N-terminal 20 to 30 amino acids of nucleus-encoded apicoplast targeted proteins function as a classical signal sequence, mediating entry into the secretory pathway. Cleavage of the signal sequence exposes a transit peptide of variable length (50 to 200 amino acids) that is required for directing proteins to the apicoplast. Although these peptides are enriched in basic amino acids, their structural and functional characteristics are not well understood, which hampers the identification of apicoplast proteins that may constitute novel chemotherapeutic targets. To identify functional domains for a model apicoplast transit peptide, we generated more than 80 deletions and mutations throughout the transit peptide of Toxoplasma gondii ferredoxin NADP+ reductase (TgFNR) and examined the ability of these altered transit peptides to mediate proper targeting and processing of a fluorescent protein reporter. These studies revealed the presence of numerous functional domains. Processing can take place at multiple sites in the protein sequence and may occur outside of the apicoplast lumen. The TgFNR transit peptide contains at least two independent and functionally redundant targeting signals, each of which contains a subdomain that is required for release from or proper sorting within the endoplasmic reticulum. Certain deletion constructs traffic to multiple locations, including the apicoplast periphery, the rhoptries, and the parasitophorous vacuole, suggesting a common thread for targeting to these specialized compartments. PMID:15189987

  1. Structural and functional divergence of the aldolase fold in Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Tonkin, Michelle L; Halavaty, Andrei S; Ramaswamy, Raghavendran; Ruan, Jiapeng; Igarashi, Makoto; Ngô, Huân M; Boulanger, Martin J

    2015-02-27

    Parasites of the phylum Apicomplexa are highly successful pathogens of humans and animals worldwide. As obligate intracellular parasites, they have significant energy requirements for invasion and gliding motility that are supplied by various metabolic pathways. Aldolases have emerged as key enzymes involved in these pathways, and all apicomplexans express one or both of fructose 1,6-bisphosphate (F16BP) aldolase and 2-deoxyribose 5-phosphate (dR5P) aldolase (DERA). Intriguingly, Toxoplasma gondii, a highly successful apicomplexan parasite, expresses F16BP aldolase (TgALD1), d5RP aldolase (TgDERA), and a divergent dR5P aldolase-like protein (TgDPA) exclusively in the latent bradyzoite stage. While the importance of TgALD1 in glycolysis is well established and TgDERA is also likely to be involved in parasite metabolism, the detailed function of TgDPA remains elusive. To gain mechanistic insight into the function of different T. gondii aldolases, we first determined the crystal structures of TgALD1 and TgDPA. Structural analysis revealed that both aldolases adopt a TIM barrel fold accessorized with divergent secondary structure elements. Structural comparison of TgALD1 and TgDPA with members of their respective enzyme families revealed that, while the active-site residues are conserved in TgALD1, key catalytic residues are absent in TgDPA. Consistent with this observation, biochemical assays showed that, while TgALD1 was active on F16BP, TgDPA was inactive on dR5P. Intriguingly, both aldolases are competent to bind polymerized actin in vitro. Altogether, structural and biochemical analyses of T. gondii aldolase and aldolase-like proteins reveal diverse functionalization of the classic TIM barrel aldolase fold.

  2. Dissecting the interface between apicomplexan parasite and host cell: Insights from a divergent AMA-RON2 pair.

    PubMed

    Parker, Michelle L; Penarete-Vargas, Diana M; Hamilton, Phineas T; Guérin, Amandine; Dubey, Jitender P; Perlman, Steve J; Spano, Furio; Lebrun, Maryse; Boulanger, Martin J

    2016-01-12

    Plasmodium falciparum and Toxoplasma gondii are widely studied parasites in phylum Apicomplexa and the etiological agents of severe human malaria and toxoplasmosis, respectively. These intracellular pathogens have evolved a sophisticated invasion strategy that relies on delivery of proteins into the host cell, where parasite-derived rhoptry neck protein 2 (RON2) family members localize to the host outer membrane and serve as ligands for apical membrane antigen (AMA) family surface proteins displayed on the parasite. Recently, we showed that T. gondii harbors a novel AMA designated as TgAMA4 that shows extreme sequence divergence from all characterized AMA family members. Here we show that sporozoite-expressed TgAMA4 clusters in a distinct phylogenetic clade with Plasmodium merozoite apical erythrocyte-binding ligand (MAEBL) proteins and forms a high-affinity, functional complex with its coevolved partner, TgRON2L1. High-resolution crystal structures of TgAMA4 in the apo and TgRON2L1-bound forms complemented with alanine scanning mutagenesis data reveal an unexpected architecture and assembly mechanism relative to previously characterized AMA-RON2 complexes. Principally, TgAMA4 lacks both a deep surface groove and a key surface loop that have been established to govern RON2 ligand binding selectivity in other AMAs. Our study reveals a previously underappreciated level of molecular diversity at the parasite-host-cell interface and offers intriguing insight into the adaptation strategies underlying sporozoite invasion. Moreover, our data offer the potential for improved design of neutralizing therapeutics targeting a broad range of AMA-RON2 pairs and apicomplexan invasive stages.

  3. [Rat cardiomyocyte remodeling after neonatal cryptosporidiosis. II. Elongation, excessive polyploidization and HIF-1alpha overexpression].

    PubMed

    Anatskaia, O V; Sidorenko, N V; Matveev, I V; Kropotov, A V; Vinogradov, A E

    2012-01-01

    Retrospective epidemyological studies evidence that infant diseases leave survivors with an increased susceptibility to cardiovascular diseases in later life. At the same time, the mechanisms of this link remain poorly understood. Based on medical statistics reporting that infectious gastroenteritis is the most common cause of maladies in babies, infants and children, we analysed the effects of moderate cryptosporidial gastroenteritis on the heart and ventricular cardiomyocyte remodelling in rats of the first month of life. The disease was challenged by a worldwide human protozoic pathogen Cryptosporidium parvum (Apicomplexa, Sporozoa). The main symptoms manifested in the growth retardation moderate diarrhea. Using real-time PCR, cytophotometry, confocal microscopy and image analysis, we indicated that cryptosporidiosis was associated, with the atrophy heart and the elongation, narrowing, protein content decrease and hyperpolyploidization of cardiomyocytes and the moderate overexpression of hypoxia inducible factor 1alpha (HIF-1alpha) mRNA. Cardiomyocyte shape remodeling and heart atrophy presented in all age groups. The severity of these changes, hovewer, declined gradually from younger to older groups. In contrast, hyperpolyploidization and HIF-1alpha mRNA overexpression were registered mainly among animals aged between 6 and 13 days, and were barely detected and non-significant in older age groups. In the rat the time period covering 6-13 days after birth is known to coincide with the intensive cardiomyocyte polyploidization and the switch from proliferation to hypertrophy. Thus, our data indicate that neonatal cryptosporidiosis may be potential cardiovascular diseases risk factor and that one of the critical time windows for the growing heart covers the time period when cardiomyocyte undergo polyploidization. PMID:23074852

  4. Discovery of a Splicing Regulator Required for Cell Cycle Progression

    SciTech Connect

    Suvorova, Elena S.; Croken, Matthew; Kratzer, Stella; Ting, Li-Min; Conde de Felipe, Magnolia; Balu, Bharath; Markillie, Lye Meng; Weiss, Louis M.; Kim, Kami; White, Michael W.

    2013-02-01

    In the G1 phase of the cell division cycle, eukaryotic cells prepare many of the resources necessary for a new round of growth including renewal of the transcriptional and protein synthetic capacities and building the machinery for chromosome replication. The function of G1 has an early evolutionary origin and is preserved in single and multicellular organisms, although the regulatory mechanisms conducting G1 specific functions are only understood in a few model eukaryotes. Here we describe a new G1 mutant from an ancient family of apicomplexan protozoans. Toxoplasma gondii temperature-sensitive mutant 12-109C6 conditionally arrests in the G1 phase due to a single point mutation in a novel protein containing a single RNA-recognition-motif (TgRRM1). The resulting tyrosine to asparagine amino acid change in TgRRM1 causes severe temperature instability that generates an effective null phenotype for this protein when the mutant is shifted to the restrictive temperature. Orthologs of TgRRM1 are widely conserved in diverse eukaryote lineages, and the human counterpart (RBM42) can functionally replace the missing Toxoplasma factor. Transcriptome studies demonstrate that gene expression is downregulated in the mutant at the restrictive temperature due to a severe defect in splicing that affects both cell cycle and constitutively expressed mRNAs. The interaction of TgRRM1 with factors of the tri-SNP complex (U4/U6 & U5 snRNPs) indicate this factor may be required to assemble an active spliceosome. Thus, the TgRRM1 family of proteins is an unrecognized and evolutionarily conserved class of splicing regulators. This study demonstrates investigations into diverse unicellular eukaryotes, like the Apicomplexa, have the potential to yield new insights into important mechanisms conserved across modern eukaryotic kingdoms.

  5. Immune response in the adipose tissue of lean mice infected with the protozoan parasite Neospora caninum.

    PubMed

    Teixeira, Luzia; Moreira, João; Melo, Joana; Bezerra, Filipa; Marques, Raquel M; Ferreirinha, Pedro; Correia, Alexandra; Monteiro, Mariana P; Ferreira, Paula G; Vilanova, Manuel

    2015-06-01

    The adipose tissue can make important contributions to immune function. Nevertheless, only a limited number of reports have investigated in lean hosts the immune response elicited in this tissue upon infection. Previous studies suggested that the intracellular protozoan Neospora caninum might affect adipose tissue physiology. Therefore, we investigated in mice challenged with this protozoan if immune cell populations within adipose tissue of different anatomical locations could be differently affected. Early in infection, parasites were detected in the adipose tissue and by 7 days of infection increased numbers of macrophages, regulatory T (Treg) cells and T-bet(+) cells were observed in gonadal, mesenteric, omental and subcutaneous adipose tissue. Increased expression of interferon-γ was also detected in gonadal adipose tissue of infected mice. Two months after infection, parasite DNA was no longer detected in these tissues, but T helper type 1 (Th1) cell numbers remained above control levels in the infected mice. Moreover, the Th1/Treg cell ratio was higher than that of controls in the mesenteric and subcutaneous adipose tissue. Interestingly, chronically infected mice presented a marked increase of serum leptin, a molecule that plays a role in energy balance regulation as well as in promoting Th1-type immune responses. Altogether, we show that an apicomplexa parasitic infection influences immune cellular composition of adipose tissue throughout the body as well as adipokine production, still noticed at a chronic phase of infection when parasites were already cleared from that particular tissue. This strengthens the emerging view that infections can have long-term consequences for the physiology of adipose tissue.

  6. The complete plastid genome sequence of the parasitic green alga Helicosporidium sp. is highly reduced and structured

    PubMed Central

    de Koning, Audrey P; Keeling, Patrick J

    2006-01-01

    Background Loss of photosynthesis has occurred independently in several plant and algal lineages, and represents a major metabolic shift with potential consequences for the content and structure of plastid genomes. To investigate such changes, we sequenced the complete plastid genome of the parasitic, non-photosynthetic green alga, Helicosporidium. Results The Helicosporidium plastid genome is among the smallest known (37.5 kb), and like other plastids from non-photosynthetic organisms it lacks all genes for proteins that function in photosynthesis. Its reduced size results from more than just loss of genes, however; it has little non-coding DNA, with only one intron and tiny intergenic spaces, and no inverted repeat (no duplicated genes at all). It encodes precisely the minimal complement of tRNAs needed to translate the universal genetic code, and has eliminated all redundant isoacceptors. The Helicosporidium plastid genome is also highly structured, with each half of the circular genome containing nearly all genes on one strand. Helicosporidium is known to be related to trebouxiophyte green algae, but the genome is structured and compacted in a manner more reminiscent of the non-photosynthetic plastids of apicomplexan parasites. Conclusion Helicosporidium contributes significantly to our understanding of the evolution of plastid DNA because it illustrates the highly ordered reduction that occurred following the loss of a major metabolic function. The convergence of plastid genome structure in Helicosporidium and the Apicomplexa raises the interesting possibility that there are common forces that shape plastid genomes, subsequent to the loss of photosynthesis in an organism. PMID:16630350

  7. A review of the infection, genetics, and evolution of Neospora caninum: from the past to the present.

    PubMed

    Goodswen, Stephen J; Kennedy, Paul J; Ellis, John T

    2013-01-01

    This paper is a review of current knowledge on Neospora caninum in the context of other apicomplexan parasites and with an emphasis on: life cycle, disease, epidemiology, immunity, control and treatment, evolution, genomes, and biological databases and web resources. N. caninum is an obligate, intracellular, coccidian, protozoan parasite of the phylum Apicomplexa. Infection can cause the clinical disease neosporosis, which most notably is associated with abortion in cattle. These abortions are a major root cause of economic loss to both the dairy and beef industries worldwide. N. caninum has been detected in every country in which a study has been specifically conducted to detect this parasite in cattle. The major mode of transmission in cattle is transplacental (or vertical) transmission and several elements of the N. caninum life cycle are yet to be studied in detail. The outcome of an infection is inextricably linked to the precise timing of the infection coupled with the status of the immune system of the dam and foetus. There is no community consensus as to whether it is the dam's pro-inflammatory cytotoxic response to tachyzoites that kills the foetus or the tachyzoites themselves. From economic analysis the most cost-effective approach to control neosporosis is a vaccine. The perfect vaccine would protect against both infection and the clinical disease, and this implies a vaccine is needed that can induce a non-foetopathic cell mediated immunity response. Researchers are beginning to capitalise on the vast potential of -omics data (e.g. genomes, transcriptomes, and proteomes) to further our understanding of pathogens but especially to identify vaccine and drug targets. The recent publication of a genome for N. caninum offers vast opportunities in these areas.

  8. Phylogenetic Analysis of Nucleus-Encoded Acetyl-CoA Carboxylases Targeted at the Cytosol and Plastid of Algae.

    PubMed

    Huerlimann, Roger; Zenger, Kyall R; Jerry, Dean R; Heimann, Kirsten

    2015-01-01

    The understanding of algal phylogeny is being impeded by an unknown number of events of horizontal gene transfer (HGT), and primary and secondary/tertiary endosymbiosis. Through these events, previously heterotrophic eukaryotes developed photosynthesis and acquired new biochemical pathways. Acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACCase) is a key enzyme in the fatty acid synthesis and elongation pathways in algae, where ACCase exists in two locations (cytosol and plastid) and in two forms (homomeric and heteromeric). All algae contain nucleus-encoded homomeric ACCase in the cytosol, independent of the origin of the plastid. Nucleus-encoded homomeric ACCase is also found in plastids of algae that arose from a secondary/tertiary endosymbiotic event. In contrast, plastids of algae that arose from a primary endosymbiotic event contain heteromeric ACCase, which consists of three nucleus-encoded and one plastid-encoded subunits. These properties of ACCase provide the potential to inform on the phylogenetic relationships of hosts and their plastids, allowing different hypothesis of endosymbiotic events to be tested. Alveolata (Dinoflagellata and Apicomplexa) and Chromista (Stramenopiles, Haptophyta and Cryptophyta) have traditionally been grouped together as Chromalveolata, forming the red lineage. However, recent genetic evidence groups the Stramenopiles, Alveolata and green plastid containing Rhizaria as SAR, excluding Haptophyta and Cryptophyta. Sequences coding for plastid and cytosol targeted homomeric ACCases were isolated from Isochrysis aff. galbana (TISO), Chromera velia and Nannochloropsis oculata, representing three taxonomic groups for which sequences were lacking. Phylogenetic analyses show that cytosolic ACCase strongly supports the SAR grouping. Conversely, plastidial ACCase groups the SAR with the Haptophyta, Cryptophyta and Prasinophyceae (Chlorophyta). These two ACCase based, phylogenetic relationships suggest that the plastidial homomeric ACCase was acquired by the

  9. Planktonic Microbes in the Gulf of Maine Area

    PubMed Central

    Li, William K. W.; Andersen, Robert A.; Gifford, Dian J.; Incze, Lewis S.; Martin, Jennifer L.; Pilskaln, Cynthia H.; Rooney-Varga, Juliette N.; Sieracki, Michael E.; Wilson, William H.; Wolff, Nicholas H.

    2011-01-01

    In the Gulf of Maine area (GoMA), as elsewhere in the ocean, the organisms of greatest numerical abundance are microbes. Viruses in GoMA are largely cyanophages and bacteriophages, including podoviruses which lack tails. There is also evidence of Mimivirus and Chlorovirus in the metagenome. Bacteria in GoMA comprise the dominant SAR11 phylotype cluster, and other abundant phylotypes such as SAR86-like cluster, SAR116-like cluster, Roseobacter, Rhodospirillaceae, Acidomicrobidae, Flavobacteriales, Cytophaga, and unclassified Alphaproteobacteria and Gammaproteobacteria clusters. Bacterial epibionts of the dinoflagellate Alexandrium fundyense include Rhodobacteraceae, Flavobacteriaceae, Cytophaga spp., Sulfitobacter spp., Sphingomonas spp., and unclassified Bacteroidetes. Phototrophic prokaryotes in GoMA include cyanobacteria that contain chlorophyll (mainly Synechococcus), aerobic anoxygenic phototrophs that contain bacteriochlorophyll, and bacteria that contain proteorhodopsin. Eukaryotic microalgae in GoMA include Bacillariophyceae, Dinophyceae, Prymnesiophyceae, Prasinophyceae, Trebouxiophyceae, Cryptophyceae, Dictyochophyceae, Chrysophyceae, Eustigmatophyceae, Pelagophyceae, Synurophyceae, and Xanthophyceae. There are no records of Bolidophyceae, Aurearenophyceae, Raphidophyceae, and Synchromophyceae in GoMA. In total, there are records for 665 names and 229 genera of microalgae. Heterotrophic eukaryotic protists in GoMA include Dinophyceae, Alveolata, Apicomplexa, amoeboid organisms, Labrynthulida, and heterotrophic marine stramenopiles (MAST). Ciliates include Strombidium, Lohmaniella, Tontonia, Strobilidium, Strombidinopsis and the mixotrophs Laboea strobila and Myrionecta rubrum (ex Mesodinium rubra). An inventory of selected microbial groups in each of 14 physiographic regions in GoMA is made by combining information on the depth-dependent variation of cell density and the depth-dependent variation of water volume. Across the entire GoMA, an estimate for the

  10. A review of the infection, genetics, and evolution of Neospora caninum: from the past to the present.

    PubMed

    Goodswen, Stephen J; Kennedy, Paul J; Ellis, John T

    2013-01-01

    This paper is a review of current knowledge on Neospora caninum in the context of other apicomplexan parasites and with an emphasis on: life cycle, disease, epidemiology, immunity, control and treatment, evolution, genomes, and biological databases and web resources. N. caninum is an obligate, intracellular, coccidian, protozoan parasite of the phylum Apicomplexa. Infection can cause the clinical disease neosporosis, which most notably is associated with abortion in cattle. These abortions are a major root cause of economic loss to both the dairy and beef industries worldwide. N. caninum has been detected in every country in which a study has been specifically conducted to detect this parasite in cattle. The major mode of transmission in cattle is transplacental (or vertical) transmission and several elements of the N. caninum life cycle are yet to be studied in detail. The outcome of an infection is inextricably linked to the precise timing of the infection coupled with the status of the immune system of the dam and foetus. There is no community consensus as to whether it is the dam's pro-inflammatory cytotoxic response to tachyzoites that kills the foetus or the tachyzoites themselves. From economic analysis the most cost-effective approach to control neosporosis is a vaccine. The perfect vaccine would protect against both infection and the clinical disease, and this implies a vaccine is needed that can induce a non-foetopathic cell mediated immunity response. Researchers are beginning to capitalise on the vast potential of -omics data (e.g. genomes, transcriptomes, and proteomes) to further our understanding of pathogens but especially to identify vaccine and drug targets. The recent publication of a genome for N. caninum offers vast opportunities in these areas. PMID:22985682

  11. Neotropical Zoonotic Parasites in Bush Dogs (Speothos venaticus) from Upper Paraná Atlantic Forests in Misiones, Argentina.

    PubMed

    Vizcaychipi, Katherina A; Rinas, Miguel; Irazu, Lucia; Miyagi, Adriana; Argüelles, Carina F; DeMatteo, Karen E

    2016-10-01

    Wildlife remains an important source of zoonotic diseases for the most vulnerable groups of humans, primarily those living in rural areas or coexisting with forest. The Upper Paraná Atlantic forest of Misiones, Argentina is facing ongoing environmental and anthropogenic changes, which affect the local biodiversity, including the bush dog (Speothos venaticus), a small canid considered Near Threatened globally and Endangered locally. This project aimed to expand the knowledge of zoonotic parasites present in the bush dog and the potential implications for human health and conservation medicine. From May to August 2011, a detection dog located 34 scats that were genetically confirmed as bush dog and georeferenced to northern Misiones. Of these 34 scats, 27 had sufficient quantity that allowed processing for zoonotic parasites using morphological (sedimentation and flotation) and antigen (coproantigen technique) analyses. Within these 27 scats, we determined that the parasitic prevalence was 63.0% (n = 17) with 8 (47.1%) having mixed infections with 2-4 parasitic genera. No significant differences (p > 0.05) between sampling areas, sex, and parasite taxa were found. We were able to summarize the predominant nematodes (Ancylostoma caninum, Toxocara canis, and Lagochilascaris spp.), cestodes (Taenia spp. and Spirometra spp.), and apicomplexa (Cystoisospora caninum) found in these bush dogs. With the copro-ELISA technique, 14.8% (n = 4) of the samples were positive for Echinococcus spp. This study represents the first comprehensive study about parasitic fauna with zoonotic potential in the free-ranging bush dog. This information combined with the innovative set of techniques used to collect the samples constitute a valuable contribution that can be used in control programs, surveillance of zoonotic diseases, and wildlife conservation, both regionally and across the bush dog's broad distribution. PMID:27603553

  12. Vertical Transmission of Babesia microti in BALB/c Mice: Preliminary Report

    PubMed Central

    Bednarska, Malgorzata; Bajer, Anna; Drozdowska, Anna; Mierzejewska, Ewa J.; Tolkacz, Katarzyna; Welc-Falęciak, Renata

    2015-01-01

    Babesia spp. (Apicomplexa, Piroplasmida) are obligate parasites of many species of mammals, causing a malaria-like infection- babesiosis. Three routes of Babesia infection have been recognized to date. The main route is by a tick bite, the second is via blood transfusion. The third, vertical route of infection is poorly recognized and understood. Our study focused on vertical transmission of B. microti in a well-established mouse model. We assessed the success of this route of infection in BALB/c mice with acute and chronic infections of B. microti. In experimental groups, females were mated on the 1st day of Babesia infection (Group G0); on the 28th day post infection (dpi) in the post- acute phase of the parasite infection (G28); and on the 90th and 150th dpi (G90 and G150 group, respectively), in the chronic phase of the parasite infection. Pups were obtained from 58% of females mated in the post-acute phase (G28) and from 33% of females in groups G90 and G150. Mice mated in the pre-acute phase of infection (G0) did not deliver pups. Congenital B. microti infections were detected by PCR amplification of Babesia 18S rDNA in almost all pups (96%) from the experimental groups G28, G90 and G150. Parasitaemia in the F1 generation was low and varied between 0.01–0.001%. Vertical transmission of B. microti was demonstrated for the first time in BALB/c mice. PMID:26372043

  13. Export of a Toxoplasma gondii Rhoptry Neck Protein Complex at the Host Cell Membrane to Form the Moving Junction during Invasion

    PubMed Central

    Poncet, Joël; Dubremetz, Jean-François; Lebrun, Maryse

    2009-01-01

    One of the most conserved features of the invasion process in Apicomplexa parasites is the formation of a moving junction (MJ) between the apex of the parasite and the host cell membrane that moves along the parasite and serves as support to propel it inside the host cell. The MJ was, up to a recent period, completely unknown at the molecular level. Recently, proteins originated from two distinct post-Golgi specialised secretory organelles, the micronemes (for AMA1) and the neck of the rhoptries (for RON2/RON4/RON5 proteins), have been shown to form a complex. AMA1 and RON4 in particular, have been localised to the MJ during invasion. Using biochemical approaches, we have identified RON8 as an additional member of the complex. We also demonstrated that all RON proteins are present at the MJ during invasion. Using metabolic labelling and immunoprecipitation, we showed that RON2 and AMA1 were able to interact in the absence of the other members. We also discovered that all MJ proteins are subjected to proteolytic maturation during trafficking to their respective organelles and that they could associate as non-mature forms in vitro. Finally, whereas AMA1 has previously been shown to be inserted into the parasite membrane upon secretion, we demonstrated, using differential permeabilization and loading of RON-specific antibodies into the host cell, that the RON complex is targeted to the host cell membrane, where RON4/5/8 remain associated with the cytoplasmic face. Globally, these results point toward a model of MJ organization where the parasite would be secreting and inserting interacting components on either side of the MJ, both at the host and at its own plasma membranes. PMID:19247437

  14. Identification and real-time expression analysis of selected Toxoplasma gondii in-vivo induced antigens recognized by IgG and IgM in sera of acute toxoplasmosis patients

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular zoonotic parasite of the phylum Apicomplexa which infects a wide range of warm-blooded animals, including humans. In this study in-vivo induced antigens of this parasite was investigated using in-vivo induced antigen technology (IVIAT) and pooled sera from patients with serological evidence of acute infection. Methods The pooled sera was first pre-absorbed against three different preparations of antigens from in-vitro-grown cells of each T. gondii and E. coli XL1-Blue MRF’, subsequently it was used to screen T. gondii cDNA phage expression library. Positive clones from each group were subjected to quantitative real-time PCR expression analysis on mRNA of in-vivo and in-vitro grown parasites. Results A total of 29 reactive clones from each IgM and IgG immunoscreenings were found to have high homology to T. gondii genes. Quantitative real-time PCR expression analysis showed that 20 IgM-detected genes and 11 IgG-detected genes were up-regulated in-vivo relative to their expression levels in-vitro. These included genes encoding micronemes, sterol-regulatory element binding protein site, SRS34A, MIC2-associated protein M2AP, nucleoredoxin, protein phosphatase 2C and several hypothetical proteins. A hypothetical protein (GenBank accession no. 7899266) detected by IgG had the highest in-vivo over in-vitro fold change of 499.86; while another up-regulated hypothetical protein (GenBank accession no. 7898829) recognized by IgM showed high sensitivity (90%) and moderate specificity (70%) in detecting T. gondii antibodies when tested with 20 individual serum samples. Conclusion The highly up-regulated genes and the corresponding proteins, in particular the hypothetical proteins, may be useful in further studies on understanding the disease pathogenesis and as potential vaccine candidates. PMID:23800344

  15. The Evolutionary History of Sarco(endo)plasmic Calcium ATPase (SERCA)

    PubMed Central

    Altshuler, Ianina; Vaillant, James J.; Xu, Sen; Cristescu, Melania E.

    2012-01-01

    Investigating the phylogenetic relationships within physiologically essential gene families across a broad range of taxa can reveal the key gene duplication events underlying their family expansion and is thus important to functional genomics studies. P-Type II ATPases represent a large family of ATP powered transporters that move ions across cellular membranes and includes Na+/K+ transporters, H+/K+ transporters, and plasma membrane Ca2+ pumps. Here, we examine the evolutionary history of one such transporter, the Sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum calcium ATPase (SERCA), which maintains calcium homeostasis in the cell by actively pumping Ca2+ into the sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum. Our protein-based phylogenetic analyses across Eukaryotes revealed two monophyletic clades of SERCA proteins, one containing animals, fungi, and plants, and the other consisting of plants and protists. Our analyses suggest that the three known SERCA proteins in vertebrates arose through two major gene duplication events after the divergence from tunicates, but before the separation of fishes and tetrapods. In plants, we recovered two SERCA clades, one being the sister group to Metazoa and the other to Apicomplexa clade, suggesting an ancient duplication in an early eukaryotic ancestor, followed by subsequent loss of one copy in Opisthokonta, the other in protists, and retention of both in plants. We also report relatively recent and independent gene duplication events within invertebrate taxa including tunicates and the leech Helobdella robusta. Thus, it appears that both ancient and recent gene duplication events have played an important role in the evolution of this ubiquitous gene family across the eukaryotic domain. PMID:23285113

  16. Phylogenetic Analysis of Nucleus-Encoded Acetyl-CoA Carboxylases Targeted at the Cytosol and Plastid of Algae

    PubMed Central

    Huerlimann, Roger; Zenger, Kyall R.; Jerry, Dean R.; Heimann, Kirsten

    2015-01-01

    The understanding of algal phylogeny is being impeded by an unknown number of events of horizontal gene transfer (HGT), and primary and secondary/tertiary endosymbiosis. Through these events, previously heterotrophic eukaryotes developed photosynthesis and acquired new biochemical pathways. Acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACCase) is a key enzyme in the fatty acid synthesis and elongation pathways in algae, where ACCase exists in two locations (cytosol and plastid) and in two forms (homomeric and heteromeric). All algae contain nucleus-encoded homomeric ACCase in the cytosol, independent of the origin of the plastid. Nucleus-encoded homomeric ACCase is also found in plastids of algae that arose from a secondary/tertiary endosymbiotic event. In contrast, plastids of algae that arose from a primary endosymbiotic event contain heteromeric ACCase, which consists of three nucleus-encoded and one plastid-encoded subunits. These properties of ACCase provide the potential to inform on the phylogenetic relationships of hosts and their plastids, allowing different hypothesis of endosymbiotic events to be tested. Alveolata (Dinoflagellata and Apicomplexa) and Chromista (Stramenopiles, Haptophyta and Cryptophyta) have traditionally been grouped together as Chromalveolata, forming the red lineage. However, recent genetic evidence groups the Stramenopiles, Alveolata and green plastid containing Rhizaria as SAR, excluding Haptophyta and Cryptophyta. Sequences coding for plastid and cytosol targeted homomeric ACCases were isolated from Isochrysis aff. galbana (TISO), Chromera velia and Nannochloropsis oculata, representing three taxonomic groups for which sequences were lacking. Phylogenetic analyses show that cytosolic ACCase strongly supports the SAR grouping. Conversely, plastidial ACCase groups the SAR with the Haptophyta, Cryptophyta and Prasinophyceae (Chlorophyta). These two ACCase based, phylogenetic relationships suggest that the plastidial homomeric ACCase was acquired by the

  17. Immune response in the adipose tissue of lean mice infected with the protozoan parasite Neospora caninum

    PubMed Central

    Teixeira, Luzia; Moreira, João; Melo, Joana; Bezerra, Filipa; Marques, Raquel M; Ferreirinha, Pedro; Correia, Alexandra; Monteiro, Mariana P; Ferreira, Paula G; Vilanova, Manuel

    2015-01-01

    The adipose tissue can make important contributions to immune function. Nevertheless, only a limited number of reports have investigated in lean hosts the immune response elicited in this tissue upon infection. Previous studies suggested that the intracellular protozoan Neospora caninum might affect adipose tissue physiology. Therefore, we investigated in mice challenged with this protozoan if immune cell populations within adipose tissue of different anatomical locations could be differently affected. Early in infection, parasites were detected in the adipose tissue and by 7 days of infection increased numbers of macrophages, regulatory T (Treg) cells and T-bet+ cells were observed in gonadal, mesenteric, omental and subcutaneous adipose tissue. Increased expression of interferon-γ was also detected in gonadal adipose tissue of infected mice. Two months after infection, parasite DNA was no longer detected in these tissues, but T helper type 1 (Th1) cell numbers remained above control levels in the infected mice. Moreover, the Th1/Treg cell ratio was higher than that of controls in the mesenteric and subcutaneous adipose tissue. Interestingly, chronically infected mice presented a marked increase of serum leptin, a molecule that plays a role in energy balance regulation as well as in promoting Th1-type immune responses. Altogether, we show that an apicomplexa parasitic infection influences immune cellular composition of adipose tissue throughout the body as well as adipokine production, still noticed at a chronic phase of infection when parasites were already cleared from that particular tissue. This strengthens the emerging view that infections can have long-term consequences for the physiology of adipose tissue. PMID:25581844

  18. Responses of soil microeukaryotic communities to short-term fumigation-incubation revealed by MiSeq amplicon sequencing

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Lin; Xu, Jianming; Feng, Youzhi; Wang, Juntao; Yu, Yongjie; Brookes, Philip C.

    2015-01-01

    In soil microbiology, there is a “paradox” of soil organic carbon (SOC) mineralization, which is that even though chloroform fumigation destroys majority of the soil microbial biomass, SOC mineralization continues at the same rate as in the non-fumigated soil during the incubation period. Soil microeukaryotes as important SOC decomposers, however, their community-level responses to chloroform fumigation are not well understood. Using the 18S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing, we analyzed the composition, diversity, and C-metabolic functions of a grassland soil and an arable soil microeukaryotic community in response to fumigation followed by a 30-day incubation. The grassland and arable soil microeukaryotic communities were dominated by the fungal Ascomycota (80.5–93.1% of the fungal sequences), followed by the protistan Cercozoa and Apicomplexa. In the arable soil fungal community, the predominance of the class Sordariomycetes was replaced by the class Eurotiomycetes after fumigation at days 7 and 30 of the incubation. Fumigation changed the microeukaryotic α-diversity in the grassland soil at days 0 and 7, and β-diversity in the arable soil at days 7 and 30. Network analysis indicated that after fumigation fungi were important groups closely related to other taxa. Most phylotypes (especially Sordariomycetes, Dothideomycetes, Coccidia, and uncultured Chytridiomycota) were inhibited, and only a few were positively stimulated by fumigation. Despite the inhibited Sordariomycetes, the fumigated communities mainly consisted of Eurotiomycetes and Sordariomycetes (21.9 and 36.5% relative frequency, respectively), which are able to produce hydrolytic enzymes associated with SOC mineralization. Our study suggests that fumigation not only decreases biomass size, but modulates the composition and diversity of the soil microeukaryotic communities, which are capable of driving SOC mineralization by release of hydrolytic enzymes during short-term fumigation-incubation. PMID

  19. Eukaryotic life in biofilms formed in a uranium mine.

    PubMed

    Zirnstein, Isabel; Arnold, Thuro; Krawczyk-Bärsch, Evelyn; Jenk, Ulf; Bernhard, Gert; Röske, Isolde

    2012-06-01

    The underground uranium mine Königstein (Saxony, Germany), currently in the process of remediation, represents an underground acid mine drainage (AMD) environment, that is, low pH conditions and high concentrations of heavy metals including uranium, in which eye-catching biofilm formations were observed. During active uranium mining from 1984 to 1990, technical leaching with sulphuric acid was applied underground on-site resulting in a change of the underground mine environment and initiated the formation of AMD and also the growth of AMD-related copious biofilms. Biofilms grow underground in the mine galleries in a depth of 250 m (50 m above sea level) either as stalactite-like slime communities or as acid streamers in the drainage channels. The eukaryotic diversity of these biofilms was analyzed by microscopic investigations and by molecular methods, that is, 18S rDNA PCR, cloning, and sequencing. The biofilm communities of the Königstein environment showed a low eukaryotic biodiversity and consisted of a variety of groups belonging to nine major taxa: ciliates, flagellates, amoebae, heterolobosea, fungi, apicomplexa, stramenopiles, rotifers and arthropoda, and a large number of uncultured eukaryotes, denoted as acidotolerant eukaryotic cluster (AEC). In Königstein, the flagellates Bodo saltans, the stramenopiles Diplophrys archeri, and the phylum of rotifers, class Bdelloidea, were detected for the first time in an AMD environment characterized by high concentrations of uranium. This study shows that not only bacteria and archaea may live in radioactive contaminated environments, but also species of eukaryotes, clearly indicating their potential influence on carbon cycling and metal immobilization within AMD-affected environment.

  20. Microscopic and Molecular Studies of the Diversity of Free-Living Protozoa in Meat-Cutting Plants▿

    PubMed Central

    Vaerewijck, Mario J. M.; Sabbe, Koen; Baré, Julie; Houf, Kurt

    2008-01-01

    The diversity of free-living protozoa in five meat-cutting plants was determined. Light microscopy after enrichment culturing was combined with sequencing of PCR-amplified, denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE)-separated 18S rRNA gene fragments, which was used as a fast screening method. The general results of the survey showed that a protozoan community of amoebae, ciliates, and flagellates was present in all of the plants. Protozoa were detected mainly in floor drains, in standing water on the floor, on soiled bars of cutting tables, on plastic pallets, and in out-of-use hot water knife sanitizers, but they were also detected on surfaces which come into direct contact with meat, such as conveyer belts, working surfaces of cutting tables, and needles of a meat tenderizer. After 7 days of incubation at refrigerator temperature, protozoa were detected in about one-half of the enrichment cultures. Based on microscopic observations, 61 morphospecies were found, and Bodo saltans, Bodo spp., Epistylis spp., Glaucoma scintillans, Petalomonas spp., Prodiscophrya collini, and Vannella sp. were the most frequently encountered identified organisms. Sequencing of DGGE bands resulted in identification of a total of 49 phylotypes, including representatives of the Amoebozoa, Chromalveolata, Excavata, Opisthokonta, and Rhizaria. Sequences of small heterotrophic flagellates were affiliated mainly with the Alveolata (Apicomplexa), Stramenopiles (Chrysophyceae), and Rhizaria (Cercozoa). This survey showed that there is high protozoan species richness in meat-cutting plants and that the species included species related to known hosts of food-borne pathogens. PMID:18641165

  1. Eukaryotic life in biofilms formed in a uranium mine

    PubMed Central

    Zirnstein, Isabel; Arnold, Thuro; Krawczyk-Bärsch, Evelyn; Jenk, Ulf; Bernhard, Gert; Röske, Isolde

    2012-01-01

    The underground uranium mine Königstein (Saxony, Germany), currently in the process of remediation, represents an underground acid mine drainage (AMD) environment, that is, low pH conditions and high concentrations of heavy metals including uranium, in which eye-catching biofilm formations were observed. During active uranium mining from 1984 to 1990, technical leaching with sulphuric acid was applied underground on-site resulting in a change of the underground mine environment and initiated the formation of AMD and also the growth of AMD-related copious biofilms. Biofilms grow underground in the mine galleries in a depth of 250 m (50 m above sea level) either as stalactite-like slime communities or as acid streamers in the drainage channels. The eukaryotic diversity of these biofilms was analyzed by microscopic investigations and by molecular methods, that is, 18S rDNA PCR, cloning, and sequencing. The biofilm communities of the Königstein environment showed a low eukaryotic biodiversity and consisted of a variety of groups belonging to nine major taxa: ciliates, flagellates, amoebae, heterolobosea, fungi, apicomplexa, stramenopiles, rotifers and arthropoda, and a large number of uncultured eukaryotes, denoted as acidotolerant eukaryotic cluster (AEC). In Königstein, the flagellates Bodo saltans, the stramenopiles Diplophrys archeri, and the phylum of rotifers, class Bdelloidea, were detected for the first time in an AMD environment characterized by high concentrations of uranium. This study shows that not only bacteria and archaea may live in radioactive contaminated environments, but also species of eukaryotes, clearly indicating their potential influence on carbon cycling and metal immobilization within AMD-affected environment. PMID:22950016

  2. Dissecting the interface between apicomplexan parasite and host cell: Insights from a divergent AMA-RON2 pair.

    PubMed

    Parker, Michelle L; Penarete-Vargas, Diana M; Hamilton, Phineas T; Guérin, Amandine; Dubey, Jitender P; Perlman, Steve J; Spano, Furio; Lebrun, Maryse; Boulanger, Martin J

    2016-01-12

    Plasmodium falciparum and Toxoplasma gondii are widely studied parasites in phylum Apicomplexa and the etiological agents of severe human malaria and toxoplasmosis, respectively. These intracellular pathogens have evolved a sophisticated invasion strategy that relies on delivery of proteins into the host cell, where parasite-derived rhoptry neck protein 2 (RON2) family members localize to the host outer membrane and serve as ligands for apical membrane antigen (AMA) family surface proteins displayed on the parasite. Recently, we showed that T. gondii harbors a novel AMA designated as TgAMA4 that shows extreme sequence divergence from all characterized AMA family members. Here we show that sporozoite-expressed TgAMA4 clusters in a distinct phylogenetic clade with Plasmodium merozoite apical erythrocyte-binding ligand (MAEBL) proteins and forms a high-affinity, functional complex with its coevolved partner, TgRON2L1. High-resolution crystal structures of TgAMA4 in the apo and TgRON2L1-bound forms complemented with alanine scanning mutagenesis data reveal an unexpected architecture and assembly mechanism relative to previously characterized AMA-RON2 complexes. Principally, TgAMA4 lacks both a deep surface groove and a key surface loop that have been established to govern RON2 ligand binding selectivity in other AMAs. Our study reveals a previously underappreciated level of molecular diversity at the parasite-host-cell interface and offers intriguing insight into the adaptation strategies underlying sporozoite invasion. Moreover, our data offer the potential for improved design of neutralizing therapeutics targeting a broad range of AMA-RON2 pairs and apicomplexan invasive stages. PMID:26712012

  3. Microscopic and molecular studies of the diversity of free-living protozoa in meat-cutting plants.

    PubMed

    Vaerewijck, Mario J M; Sabbe, Koen; Baré, Julie; Houf, Kurt

    2008-09-01

    The diversity of free-living protozoa in five meat-cutting plants was determined. Light microscopy after enrichment culturing was combined with sequencing of PCR-amplified, denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE)-separated 18S rRNA gene fragments, which was used as a fast screening method. The general results of the survey showed that a protozoan community of amoebae, ciliates, and flagellates was present in all of the plants. Protozoa were detected mainly in floor drains, in standing water on the floor, on soiled bars of cutting tables, on plastic pallets, and in out-of-use hot water knife sanitizers, but they were also detected on surfaces which come into direct contact with meat, such as conveyer belts, working surfaces of cutting tables, and needles of a meat tenderizer. After 7 days of incubation at refrigerator temperature, protozoa were detected in about one-half of the enrichment cultures. Based on microscopic observations, 61 morphospecies were found, and Bodo saltans, Bodo spp., Epistylis spp., Glaucoma scintillans, Petalomonas spp., Prodiscophrya collini, and Vannella sp. were the most frequently encountered identified organisms. Sequencing of DGGE bands resulted in identification of a total of 49 phylotypes, including representatives of the Amoebozoa, Chromalveolata, Excavata, Opisthokonta, and Rhizaria. Sequences of small heterotrophic flagellates were affiliated mainly with the Alveolata (Apicomplexa), Stramenopiles (Chrysophyceae), and Rhizaria (Cercozoa). This survey showed that there is high protozoan species richness in meat-cutting plants and that the species included species related to known hosts of food-borne pathogens. PMID:18641165

  4. Microbial eukaryote globins.

    PubMed

    Vinogradov, Serge N; Bailly, Xavier; Smith, David R; Tinajero-Trejo, Mariana; Poole, Robert K; Hoogewijs, David

    2013-01-01

    A bioinformatics survey of about 120 protist and 240 fungal genomes and transcriptomes revealed a broad array of globins, representing five of the eight subfamilies identified in bacteria. Most conspicuous is the absence of protoglobins and globin-coupled sensors, except for a two-domain globin in Leishmanias, that comprises a nucleotidyl cyclase domain, and the virtual absence of truncated group 3 globins. In contrast to bacteria, co-occurrence of more than two globin subfamilies appears to be rare in protists. Although globins were lacking in the Apicomplexa and the Microsporidia intracellular pathogens, they occurred in the pathogenic Trypanosomatidae, Stramenopiles and certain fungi. Flavohaemoglobins (FHbs) and related single-domain globins occur across the protist groups. Fungi are unique in having FHbs co-occurring with sensor single-domain globins (SSDgbs). Obligately biotrophic fungi covered in our analysis lack globins. Furthermore, SSDgbs occur only in a heterolobosean amoeba, Naegleria and the stramenopile Hyphochytrium. Of the three subfamilies of truncated Mb-fold globins, TrHb1s appear to be the most widespread, occurring as multiple copies in chlorophyte and ciliophora genomes, many as multidomain proteins. Although the ciliates appear to have only TrHb1s, the chlorophytes have Mb-like globins and TrHb2s, both closely related to the corresponding plant globins. The presently available number of protist genomes is inadequate to provide a definitive census of their globins. Bayesian molecular analyses of single-domain 3/3 Mb-fold globins suggest a close relationship of chlorophyte and haptophyte globins, including choanoflagellate and Capsaspora globins to land plant symbiotic and non-symbiotic haemoglobins and to vertebrate neuroglobins.

  5. Is Planktonic Diversity Well Recorded in Sedimentary DNA? Toward the Reconstruction of Past Protistan Diversity.

    PubMed

    Capo, Eric; Debroas, Didier; Arnaud, Fabien; Domaizon, Isabelle

    2015-11-01

    Studies based on the coupling of a paleolimnological approach and molecular tools (e.g., sequencing of sedimentary DNA) present a promising opportunity to obtain long-term data on past lacustrine biodiversity. However, certain validations are still required, such as the evaluation of DNA preservation in sediments for various planktonic taxa that do not leave any morphological diagnostic features. In this study, we focused on the diversity of planktonic unicellular eukaryotes and verified the presence of their DNA in sediment archives. We compared the molecular inventories (high-throughput sequencing of 18S ribosomal DNA) obtained from monitoring the water column with those obtained for DNA archived in the first 30 cm of sediment. Seventy-one percent of taxonomic units found in the water samples were detected in sediment samples, including pigmented taxa, such as Chlorophyta, Dinophyceae, and Chrysophyceae, phagotrophic taxa, such as Ciliophora, parasitic taxa, such as Apicomplexa and Chytridiomycota, and saprotrophs, such as Cryptomycota. Parallel analysis of 18S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) transcripts revealed the presence of living eukaryotic taxa only in the top 2 cm of sediment; although some limits exist in using RNA/DNA ratio as indicator of microbial activity, these results suggested that the sedimentary DNA mostly represented DNA from past and inactive communities. Only the diversity of a few groups, such as Cryptophyta and Haptophyta, seemed to be poorly preserved in sediments. Our overall results showed that the application of sequencing techniques to sedimentary DNA could be used to reconstruct past diversity for numerous planktonic eukaryotic groups.

  6. The evolutionary history of sarco(endo)plasmic calcium ATPase (SERCA).

    PubMed

    Altshuler, Ianina; Vaillant, James J; Xu, Sen; Cristescu, Melania E

    2012-01-01

    Investigating the phylogenetic relationships within physiologically essential gene families across a broad range of taxa can reveal the key gene duplication events underlying their family expansion and is thus important to functional genomics studies. P-Type II ATPases represent a large family of ATP powered transporters that move ions across cellular membranes and includes Na(+)/K(+) transporters, H(+)/K(+) transporters, and plasma membrane Ca(2+) pumps. Here, we examine the evolutionary history of one such transporter, the Sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum calcium ATPase (SERCA), which maintains calcium homeostasis in the cell by actively pumping Ca(2+) into the sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum. Our protein-based phylogenetic analyses across Eukaryotes revealed two monophyletic clades of SERCA proteins, one containing animals, fungi, and plants, and the other consisting of plants and protists. Our analyses suggest that the three known SERCA proteins in vertebrates arose through two major gene duplication events after the divergence from tunicates, but before the separation of fishes and tetrapods. In plants, we recovered two SERCA clades, one being the sister group to Metazoa and the other to Apicomplexa clade, suggesting an ancient duplication in an early eukaryotic ancestor, followed by subsequent loss of one copy in Opisthokonta, the other in protists, and retention of both in plants. We also report relatively recent and independent gene duplication events within invertebrate taxa including tunicates and the leech Helobdella robusta. Thus, it appears that both ancient and recent gene duplication events have played an important role in the evolution of this ubiquitous gene family across the eukaryotic domain.

  7. Roles of the species-specific subdomain and the N-terminal peptide of Toxoplasma gondii ferredoxin-NADP+ reductase in ferredoxin binding.

    PubMed

    Pandini, Vittorio; Caprini, Gianluca; Tedeschi, Gabriella; Seeber, Frank; Zanetti, Giuliana; Aliverti, Alessandro

    2006-03-21

    The plant-type ferredoxin/ferredoxin-NADP(+) reductase (Fd/FNR) redox system found in parasites of the phylum Apicomplexa has been proposed as a target for novel drugs used against life-threatening diseases such as malaria and toxoplasmosis. Like many proteins from these protists, apicomplexan FNRs are characterized by the presence of unique peptide insertions of variable length and yet unknown function. Since three-dimensional data are not available for any of the parasite FNRs, we used limited proteolysis to carry out an extensive study of the conformation of Toxoplasma gondii FNR. This led to identification of 11 peptide bonds susceptible to the action of four different proteases. Cleavage sites are clustered in four regions of the enzyme, which include two of its three species-specific insertions. Such regions are thus predicted to form flexible surface loops. The protein substrate Fd protected FNR against cleavage both at its N-terminal peptide and at its largest sequence insertion (28 residues). Deletion by protein engineering of the species-specific subdomain containing the latter insertion resulted in an enzyme form that, although catalytically active, displayed a 10-fold decreased affinity for Fd. In contrast, removal of the first 15 residues of the enzyme unexpectedly enhanced its interaction with Fd. Thus, two flexible polypeptide regions of T. gondii FNR are involved in Fd interaction but have opposite roles in modulating the binding affinity for the protein ligand. In this respect, T. gondii FNR differs from plant FNRs, where the N-terminal peptide contributes to the stabilization of their complex with Fd.

  8. Eugregarine trophozoite detachment from the host epithelium via epimerite retraction: fiction or fact?

    PubMed

    Valigurová, Andrea; Michalková, Veronika; Koudela, Bretislav

    2009-09-01

    Eugregarines represent a diverse group of Apicomplexa parasitising numerous invertebrates. Their sporozoites generally develop into epicellular trophozoites attached to the host epithelium by a specialised attachment organelle known as an epimerite. They are considered peculiar protists due to their unique cell architecture and dimensions as well as their attachment strategy which is similar to that of cryptosporidia. Using electron and fluorescence microscopy, the fine structure of the epimerite with associated structures and the mechanism of trophozoite detachment from the host epithelium were studied in Gregarina polymorpha parasitising the intestine of Tenebrio molitor larvae. The epimerite appears to be a very dynamic structure whose shape dramatically changes depending on whether or not it is embedded into the host epithelium. The trophozoite's most fragile zone is the area below the membrane fusion site at the epimerite base. The epimerite plasma membrane forms basal radial ribs which are involved in increasing its surface and strengthening the epimerite-host cell junction. FITC-phalloidin labelling demonstrated the presence of filamentous actin in trophozoites along with its accumulation at the epimerite base and in the apical end of the protomerite, as well as a patch accumulation of filamentous actin in the protomerite of maturing and mature trophozoites. Indirect immunofluorescence revealed the presence of myosin in the cortical zone of the epimerite and in the membrane fusion site area. The data obtained strongly suggest that these structures could facilitate the detachment of a mature trophozoite from the host epithelium. Supported by data presented herein and our previous observations, we propose a new hypothesis on the mechanism of trophozoite detachment from the host epithelium based on epimerite retraction into the protomerite. This is contrary to the commonly accepted hypothesis describing gradual epimerite constriction and subsequent separation

  9. Cryptic Eimeria genotypes are common across the southern but not northern hemisphere.

    PubMed

    Clark, Emily L; Macdonald, Sarah E; Thenmozhi, V; Kundu, Krishnendu; Garg, Rajat; Kumar, Saroj; Ayoade, Simeon; Fornace, Kimberly M; Jatau, Isa Danladi; Moftah, Abdalgader; Nolan, Matthew J; Sudhakar, N R; Adebambo, A O; Lawal, I A; Álvarez Zapata, Ramón; Awuni, Joseph A; Chapman, H David; Karimuribo, Esron; Mugasa, Claire M; Namangala, Boniface; Rushton, Jonathan; Suo, Xun; Thangaraj, Kumarasamy; Srinivasa Rao, Arni S R; Tewari, Anup K; Banerjee, Partha S; Dhinakar Raj, G; Raman, M; Tomley, Fiona M; Blake, Damer P

    2016-08-01

    The phylum Apicomplexa includes parasites of medical, zoonotic and veterinary significance. Understanding the global distribution and genetic diversity of these protozoa is of fundamental importance for efficient, robust and long-lasting methods of control. Eimeria spp. cause intestinal coccidiosis in all major livestock animals and are the most important parasites of domestic chickens in terms of both economic impact and animal welfare. Despite having significant negative impacts on the efficiency of food production, many fundamental questions relating to the global distribution and genetic variation of Eimeria spp. remain largely unanswered. Here, we provide the broadest map yet of Eimeria occurrence for domestic chickens, confirming that all the known species (Eimeria acervulina, Eimeria brunetti, Eimeria maxima, Eimeria mitis, Eimeria necatrix, Eimeria praecox, Eimeria tenella) are present in all six continents where chickens are found (including 21 countries). Analysis of 248 internal transcribed spacer sequences derived from 17 countries provided evidence of possible allopatric diversity for species such as E. tenella (FST values ⩽0.34) but not E. acervulina and E. mitis, and highlighted a trend towards widespread genetic variance. We found that three genetic variants described previously only in Australia and southern Africa (operational taxonomic units x, y and z) have a wide distribution across the southern, but not the northern hemisphere. While the drivers for such a polarised distribution of these operational taxonomic unit genotypes remains unclear, the occurrence of genetically variant Eimeria may pose a risk to food security and animal welfare in Europe and North America should these parasites spread to the northern hemisphere. PMID:27368611

  10. Diversity in mitochondrial metabolic pathways in parasitic protists Plasmodium and Cryptosporidium.

    PubMed

    Mogi, Tatsushi; Kita, Kiyoshi

    2010-09-01

    Apicomplexans are obligate intracellular parasites and occupy diverse niches. They have remodeled mitochondrial carbon and energy metabolism through reductive evolution. Plasmodium lacks mitochondrial pyruvate dehydrogenase and H(+)-translocating NADH dehydrogenase (Complex I, NDH1). The mitochondorion contains a minimal mtDNA ( approximately 6kb) and carries out oxidative phosphorylation in the insect vector stages, by using 2-oxoglutarate as an alternative means of entry into the TCA cycle and a single-subunit flavoprotein as an alternative NADH dehydrogenase (NDH2). In the blood stages of mammalian hosts, mitochondrial enzymes are down-regulated and parasite energy metabolism relies mainly on glycolysis. Mitosomes of Cryptosporidium parvum and Cryptosporidium hominis (human intestine parasites) lack mtDNA, pyruvate dehydrogenase, TCA cycle enzymes except malate-quinone oxidoreductase (MQO), and ATP synthase subunits except alpha and beta. In contrast, mitosomes of Cryptosporidium muris (a rodent gastric parasite) retain all TCA cycle enzymes and functional ATP synthase and carry out oxidative phosphorylation with pyruvate-NADP(+) oxidoreductase (PNO) and a simple and unique respiratory chain consisting of NDH2 and alternative oxidase (AOX). Cryptosporidium and Perkinsus are early branching groups of chromoalveolates (apicomplexa and dinoflagellates, respectively), and both Cryptosporidium mitosome and Perkinsus mitochondrion use PNO, MQO, and AOX. All apicomplexan parasites and dinoflagellates share MQO, which has been acquired from epsilon-proteobacteria via lateral gene transfer. By genome data mining on Plasmodium, Cryptosporidium and Perkinsus, here we summarized their mitochondrial metabolic pathways, which are varied largely from those of mammalian hosts. We hope that our findings will help in understanding the apicomplexan metabolism and development of new chemotherapeutics with novel targets.

  11. Neotropical Zoonotic Parasites in Bush Dogs (Speothos venaticus) from Upper Paraná Atlantic Forests in Misiones, Argentina.

    PubMed

    Vizcaychipi, Katherina A; Rinas, Miguel; Irazu, Lucia; Miyagi, Adriana; Argüelles, Carina F; DeMatteo, Karen E

    2016-10-01

    Wildlife remains an important source of zoonotic diseases for the most vulnerable groups of humans, primarily those living in rural areas or coexisting with forest. The Upper Paraná Atlantic forest of Misiones, Argentina is facing ongoing environmental and anthropogenic changes, which affect the local biodiversity, including the bush dog (Speothos venaticus), a small canid considered Near Threatened globally and Endangered locally. This project aimed to expand the knowledge of zoonotic parasites present in the bush dog and the potential implications for human health and conservation medicine. From May to August 2011, a detection dog located 34 scats that were genetically confirmed as bush dog and georeferenced to northern Misiones. Of these 34 scats, 27 had sufficient quantity that allowed processing for zoonotic parasites using morphological (sedimentation and flotation) and antigen (coproantigen technique) analyses. Within these 27 scats, we determined that the parasitic prevalence was 63.0% (n = 17) with 8 (47.1%) having mixed infections with 2-4 parasitic genera. No significant differences (p > 0.05) between sampling areas, sex, and parasite taxa were found. We were able to summarize the predominant nematodes (Ancylostoma caninum, Toxocara canis, and Lagochilascaris spp.), cestodes (Taenia spp. and Spirometra spp.), and apicomplexa (Cystoisospora caninum) found in these bush dogs. With the copro-ELISA technique, 14.8% (n = 4) of the samples were positive for Echinococcus spp. This study represents the first comprehensive study about parasitic fauna with zoonotic potential in the free-ranging bush dog. This information combined with the innovative set of techniques used to collect the samples constitute a valuable contribution that can be used in control programs, surveillance of zoonotic diseases, and wildlife conservation, both regionally and across the bush dog's broad distribution.

  12. The enigma of eugregarine epicytic folds: where gliding motility originates?

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background In the past decades, many studies focused on the cell motility of apicomplexan invasive stages as they represent a potential target for chemotherapeutic intervention. Gregarines (Conoidasida, Gregarinasina) are a heterogeneous group that parasitize invertebrates and urochordates, and are thought to be an early branching lineage of Apicomplexa. As characteristic of apicomplexan zoites, gregarines are covered by a complicated pellicle, consisting of the plasma membrane and the closely apposed inner membrane complex, which is associated with a number of cytoskeletal elements. The cell cortex of eugregarines, the epicyte, is more complicated than that of other apicomplexans, as it forms various superficial structures. Results The epicyte of the eugregarines, Gregarina cuneata, G. polymorpha and G. steini, analysed in the present study is organised in longitudinal folds covering the entire cell. In mature trophozoites and gamonts, each epicytic fold exhibits similar ectoplasmic structures and is built up from the plasma membrane, inner membrane complex, 12-nm filaments, rippled dense structures and basal lamina. In addition, rib-like myonemes and an ectoplasmic network are frequently observed. Under experimental conditions, eugregarines showed varied speeds and paths of simple linear gliding. In all three species, actin and myosin were associated with the pellicle, and this actomyosin complex appeared to be restricted to the lateral parts of the epicytic folds. Treatment of living gamonts with jasplakinolide and cytochalasin D confirmed that actin actively participates in gregarine gliding. Contributions to gliding of specific subcellular components are discussed. Conclusions Cell motility in gregarines and other apicomplexans share features in common, i.e. a three-layered pellicle, an actomyosin complex, and the polymerisation of actin during gliding. Although the general architecture and supramolecular organisation of the pellicle is not correlated with

  13. Characterization of a Serine Hydrolase Targeted by Acyl-protein Thioesterase Inhibitors in Toxoplasma gondii

    PubMed Central

    Kemp, Louise E.; Rusch, Marion; Adibekian, Alexander; Bullen, Hayley E.; Graindorge, Arnault; Freymond, Céline; Rottmann, Matthias; Braun-Breton, Catherine; Baumeister, Stefan; Porfetye, Arthur T.; Vetter, Ingrid R.; Hedberg, Christian; Soldati-Favre, Dominique

    2013-01-01

    In eukaryotic organisms, cysteine palmitoylation is an important reversible modification that impacts protein targeting, folding, stability, and interactions with partners. Evidence suggests that protein palmitoylation contributes to key biological processes in Apicomplexa with the recent palmitome of the malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum reporting over 400 substrates that are modified with palmitate by a broad range of protein S-acyl transferases. Dynamic palmitoylation cycles require the action of an acyl-protein thioesterase (APT) that cleaves palmitate from substrates and conveys reversibility to this posttranslational modification. In this work, we identified candidates for APT activity in Toxoplasma gondii. Treatment of parasites with low micromolar concentrations of β-lactone- or triazole urea-based inhibitors that target human APT1 showed varied detrimental effects at multiple steps of the parasite lytic cycle. The use of an activity-based probe in combination with these inhibitors revealed the existence of several serine hydrolases that are targeted by APT1 inhibitors. The active serine hydrolase, TgASH1, identified as the homologue closest to human APT1 and APT2, was characterized further. Biochemical analysis of TgASH1 indicated that this enzyme cleaves substrates with a specificity similar to APTs, and homology modeling points toward an APT-like enzyme. TgASH1 is dispensable for parasite survival, which indicates that the severe effects observed with the β-lactone inhibitors are caused by the inhibition of non-TgASH1 targets. Other ASH candidates for APT activity were functionally characterized, and one of them was found to be resistant to gene disruption due to the potential essential nature of the protein. PMID:23913689

  14. Changes in Haemoproteus sex ratios: fertility insurance or differential sex lifespan?

    PubMed Central

    Merino, Santiago; Tomás, Gustavo; Moreno, Juan; Sanz, Juan José; Arriero, Elena; Folgueira, Cristina

    2004-01-01

    There is little direct evidence of the fitness effects of changes in malaria gametocyte sex ratio. Gametocyte sex ratios in haemospororin parasites (phylum Apicomplexa) are usually female skewed. However, in some cases and especially in Haemoproteus parasites, less female-biased and even male-biased sex ratios are encountered. The 'fertility insurance hypothesis' tries to explain these biases as an evolutionary strategy to facilitate gamete encounter. Thus, the hypothesis predicts that, if there is a reduction in gametocyte density (intensity of infection) or other factors preventing gametes from meeting, a change to a higher proportion of male gametocytes may be favoured. By contrast, a change in sex ratio may be caused by other non-adaptive mechanisms, for example differential survival of the gametocytes of each sex. We study within-host changes in Haemoproteus majoris sex ratios following an experimental reduction in the density of the parasites in the blood in a breeding population of blue tits (Parus caeruleus). Medication with the antimalarial drug primaquine induced a significant reduction in Haemoproteus gametocyte infection intensity in two different breeding seasons and under two different doses of medication. Sex ratios became male skewed following the experimental treatment in agreement with the predictions of the 'fertility insurance' hypothesis. Also in support of the hypothesis, a significant change towards male-biased sex ratios emerged for non-medicated birds in one year, probably owing to the natural immune reduction of the density of the parasites in the blood. The alternative possibility that changes are caused by different lifespans of gametocytes is not supported by changes in sex ratios in control hosts, where new production and release of gametocytes occur. PMID:15306307

  15. Identification of MMV Malaria Box Inhibitors of Perkinsus marinus Using an ATP-Based Bioluminescence Assay

    PubMed Central

    Alemán Resto, Yesmalie; Fernández Robledo, José A.

    2014-01-01

    “Dermo” disease caused by the protozoan parasite Perkinsus marinus (Perkinsozoa) is one of the main obstacles to the restoration of oyster populations in the USA. Perkinsus spp. are also a concern worldwide because there are limited approaches to intervention against the disease. Based on the phylogenetic affinity between the Perkinsozoa and Apicomplexa, we exposed Perkinsus trophozoites to the Medicines for Malaria Venture Malaria Box, an open access compound library comprised of 200 drug-like and 200 probe-like compounds that are highly active against the erythrocyte stage of Plasmodium falciparum. Using a final concentration of 20 µM, we found that 4 days after exposure 46% of the compounds were active against P. marinus trophozoites. Six compounds with IC50 in the µM range were used to compare the degree of susceptibility in vitro of eight P. marinus strains from the USA and five Perkinsus species from around the world. The three compounds, MMV666021, MMV665807 and MMV666102, displayed a uniform effect across Perkinsus strains and species. Both Perkinsus marinus isolates and Perkinsus spp. presented different patterns of response to the panel of compounds tested, supporting the concept of strain/species variability. Here, we expanded the range of compounds available for inhibiting Perkinsus proliferation in vitro and characterized Perkinsus phenotypes based on their resistance to six compounds. We also discuss the implications of these findings in the context of oyster management. The Perkinsus system offers the potential for investigating the mechanism of action of the compounds of interest. PMID:25337810

  16. The FIKK kinase of Toxoplasma gondii is not essential for the parasite's lytic cycle.

    PubMed

    Skariah, S; Walwyn, O; Engelberg, K; Gubbels, M-J; Gaylets, C; Kim, N; Lynch, B; Sultan, A; Mordue, D G

    2016-05-01

    FIKK kinases are a novel family of kinases unique to the Apicomplexa. While most apicomplexans encode a single FIKK kinase, Plasmodium falciparum expresses 21 and piroplasms do not encode a FIKK kinase. FIKK kinases share a conserved C-terminal catalytic domain, but the N-terminal region is highly variable and contains no known functional domains. To date, FIKK kinases have been primarily studied in P. falciparum and Plasmodium berghei. Those that have been studied are exported from the parasite and associate with diverse locations in the infected erythrocyte cytosol or membrane. Deletion of individual P. falciparum FIKK kinases indicates that they may play a role in modification of the infected erythrocyte. The current study characterises the single FIKK gene in Toxoplasma gondii to evaluate the importance of the FIKK kinase in an apicomplexan that has a single FIKK kinase. The TgFIKK gene encoded a protein of approximately 280kDa. Endogenous tagging of the FIKK protein with Yellow Fluorescent Protein showed that the FIKK protein exclusively localised to the posterior end of tachyzoites. A Yellow Fluorescent Protein-tagged FIKK and a Ty-tagged FIKK both co-localised with T. gondii membrane occupation and recognition nexus protein to the basal complex and were localised apical to inner membrane complex protein-5 and Centrin2. Deletion of TgFIKK, surprisingly, had no detectable effect on the parasite's lytic cycle in vitro in human fibroblast cells or in acute virulence in vivo. Thus, our results clearly show that while the FIKK kinase is expressed in tachyzoites, it is not essential for the lytic cycle of T. gondii.

  17. A complex small RNA repertoire is generated by a plant/fungal-like machinery and effected by a metazoan-like Argonaute in the single-cell human parasite Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Braun, Laurence; Cannella, Dominique; Ortet, Philippe; Barakat, Mohamed; Sautel, Céline F; Kieffer, Sylvie; Garin, Jérôme; Bastien, Olivier; Voinnet, Olivier; Hakimi, Mohamed-Ali

    2010-05-01

    In RNA silencing, small RNAs produced by the RNase-III Dicer guide Argonaute-like proteins as part of RNA-induced silencing complexes (RISC) to regulate gene expression transcriptionally or post-transcriptionally. Here, we have characterized the RNA silencing machinery and exhaustive small RNAome of Toxoplasma gondii, member of the Apicomplexa, a phylum of animal- and human-infecting parasites that cause extensive health and economic damages to human populations worldwide. Remarkably, the small RNA-generating machinery of Toxoplasma is phylogenetically and functionally related to that of plants and fungi, and accounts for an exceptionally diverse array of small RNAs. This array includes conspicuous populations of repeat-associated small interfering RNA (siRNA), which, as in plants, likely generate and maintain heterochromatin at DNA repeats and satellites. Toxoplasma small RNAs also include many microRNAs with clear metazoan-like features whose accumulation is sometimes extremely high and dynamic, an unexpected finding given that Toxoplasma is a unicellular protist. Both plant-like heterochromatic small RNAs and metazoan-like microRNAs bind to a single Argonaute protein, Tg-AGO. Toxoplasma miRNAs co-sediment with polyribosomes, and thus, are likely to act as translational regulators, consistent with the lack of catalytic residues in Tg-AGO. Mass spectrometric analyses of the Tg-AGO protein complex revealed a common set of virtually all known RISC components so far characterized in human and Drosophila, as well as novel proteins involved in RNA metabolism. In agreement with its loading with heterochromatic small RNAs, Tg-AGO also associates substoichiometrically with components of known chromatin-repressing complexes. Thus, a puzzling patchwork of silencing processor and effector proteins from plant, fungal and metazoan origin accounts for the production and action of an unsuspected variety of small RNAs in the single-cell parasite Toxoplasma and possibly in other

  18. Kingdom protozoa and its 18 phyla.

    PubMed

    Cavalier-Smith, T

    1993-12-01

    flattened cristae]); (ii) Alveolata (three phyla with cortical alveoli and tubular mitochondrial cristae, i.e., Dinozoa [Dinoflagellata and Protalveolata], Apicomplexa, and Ciliophora); (iii) Neosarcodina (phyla Rhizopoda [lobose and filose amoebae] and Reticulosa [foraminifera; reticulopodial amoebae], usually with tubular cristae); (iv) Actinopoda (two phyla with axopodia: Heliozoa and Radiozoa [Radiolaria, Acantharia]); (v) Entamoebia (a single phylum of amoebae with no mitochondria, peroxisomes, hydrogenosomes, or cilia and with transient intranuclear centrosomes); (vi) Myxozoa (three endoparasitic phyla with multicellular spores, mitochondria, and no cilia: Myxosporidia, Haplosporidia, and Paramyxia); and (vii) Mesozoa (multicells with tubular mitochondrial cristae, included in Protozoa because, unlike animals, they lack collagenous connective tissue). PMID:8302218

  19. Mock communities highlight the diversity of host-associated eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Wegener Parfrey, Laura

    2015-09-01

    Host-associated microbes are ubiquitous. Every multicellular eukaryote, and even many unicellular eukaryotes (protists), hosts a diverse community of microbes. High-throughput sequencing (HTS) tools have illuminated the vast diversity of host-associated microbes and shown that they have widespread influence on host biology, ecology and evolution (McFall-Ngai et al. ). Bacteria receive most of the attention, but protists are also important components of microbial communities associated with humans (Parfrey et al. ) and other hosts. As HTS tools are increasingly used to study eukaryotes, the presence of numerous and diverse host-associated eukaryotes is emerging as a common theme across ecosystems. Indeed, HTS studies demonstrate that host-associated lineages account for between 2 and 12% of overall eukaryotic sequences detected in soil, marine and freshwater data sets, with much higher relative abundances observed in some samples (Ramirez et al. ; Simon et al. ; de Vargas et al. ). Previous studies in soil detected large numbers of predominantly parasitic lineages such as Apicomplexa, but did not delve into their origin [e.g. (Ramirez et al. )]. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Geisen et al. () use mock communities to show that many of the eukaryotic organisms detected by environmental sequencing in soils are potentially associated with animal hosts rather than free-living. By isolating the host-associated fraction of soil microbial communities, Geisen and colleagues help explain the surprisingly high diversity of parasitic eukaryotic lineages often detected in soil/terrestrial studies using high-throughput sequencing (HTS) and reinforce the ubiquity of these host-associated microbes. It is clear that we can no longer assume that organisms detected in bulk environmental sequencing are free-living, but instead need to design studies that specifically enumerate the diversity and function of host-associated eukaryotes. Doing so will allow the field to

  20. Fitting hidden Markov models of protein domains to a target species: application to Plasmodium falciparum

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    and the Apicomplexa phylum, and identify many domains that are not detected by previous approaches. In terms of the number of new discovered domains, the new approaches outperform the previous ones when no close species are available or when they are used to identify likely occurrences among potential domains with high E-values. All predictions on P. falciparum have been integrated into a dedicated website which pools all known/new annotations of protein domains and functions for this organism. A software implementing the two proposed approaches is available at the same address: http://www.lirmm.fr/∼terrapon/HMMfit/ PMID:22548871

  1. Mock communities highlight the diversity of host-associated eukaryotes.

    PubMed

    Wegener Parfrey, Laura

    2015-09-01

    Host-associated microbes are ubiquitous. Every multicellular eukaryote, and even many unicellular eukaryotes (protists), hosts a diverse community of microbes. High-throughput sequencing (HTS) tools have illuminated the vast diversity of host-associated microbes and shown that they have widespread influence on host biology, ecology and evolution (McFall-Ngai et al. ). Bacteria receive most of the attention, but protists are also important components of microbial communities associated with humans (Parfrey et al. ) and other hosts. As HTS tools are increasingly used to study eukaryotes, the presence of numerous and diverse host-associated eukaryotes is emerging as a common theme across ecosystems. Indeed, HTS studies demonstrate that host-associated lineages account for between 2 and 12% of overall eukaryotic sequences detected in soil, marine and freshwater data sets, with much higher relative abundances observed in some samples (Ramirez et al. ; Simon et al. ; de Vargas et al. ). Previous studies in soil detected large numbers of predominantly parasitic lineages such as Apicomplexa, but did not delve into their origin [e.g. (Ramirez et al. )]. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Geisen et al. () use mock communities to show that many of the eukaryotic organisms detected by environmental sequencing in soils are potentially associated with animal hosts rather than free-living. By isolating the host-associated fraction of soil microbial communities, Geisen and colleagues help explain the surprisingly high diversity of parasitic eukaryotic lineages often detected in soil/terrestrial studies using high-throughput sequencing (HTS) and reinforce the ubiquity of these host-associated microbes. It is clear that we can no longer assume that organisms detected in bulk environmental sequencing are free-living, but instead need to design studies that specifically enumerate the diversity and function of host-associated eukaryotes. Doing so will allow the field to

  2. PvRON2, a new Plasmodium vivax rhoptry neck antigen

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Rhoptries are specialized organelles from parasites belonging to the phylum Apicomplexa; they secrete their protein content during invasion of host target cells and are sorted into discrete subcompartments within rhoptry neck or bulb. This distribution is associated with these proteins' role in tight junction (TJ) and parasitophorous vacuole (PV) formation, respectively. Methods Plasmodium falciparum RON2 amino acid sequence was used as bait for screening the codifying gene for the homologous protein in the Plasmodium vivax genome. Gene synteny, as well as identity and similarity values, were determined for ron2 and its flanking genes among P. falciparum, P. vivax and other malarial parasite genomes available at PlasmoDB and Sanger Institute databases. Pvron2 gene transcription was determined by RT-PCR of cDNA obtained from the P. vivax VCG-1 strain. Protein expression and localization were assessed by Western blot and immunofluorescence using polyclonal anti-PvRON2 antibodies. Co-localization was confirmed using antibodies directed towards specific microneme and rhoptry neck proteins. Results and discussion The first P. vivax rhoptry neck protein (named here PvRON2) has been identified in this study. PvRON2 is a 2,204 residue-long protein encoded by a single 6,615 bp exon containing a hydrophobic signal sequence towards the amino-terminus, a transmembrane domain towards the carboxy-terminus and two coiled coil α-helical motifs; these are characteristic features of several previously described vaccine candidates against malaria. This protein also contains two tandem repeats within the interspecies variable sequence possibly involved in evading a host's immune system. PvRON2 is expressed in late schizonts and localized in rhoptry necks similar to what has been reported for PfRON2, which suggests its participation during target cell invasion. Conclusions The identification and partial characterization of the first P. vivax rhoptry neck protein are

  3. Bovine besnoitiosis in Switzerland: imported cases and local transmission.

    PubMed

    Basso, Walter; Lesser, Maren; Grimm, Felix; Hilbe, Monika; Sydler, Titus; Trösch, Luzia; Ochs, Hansueli; Braun, Ueli; Deplazes, Peter

    2013-12-01

    Bovine besnoitiosis is an economically important disease of cattle, caused by Besnoitia besnoiti (Protozoa, Apicomplexa). A considerable spreading of this parasitic infection has been observed in Europe in the last ten years, mainly related to animal trade. In order to investigate the possibility of B. besnoiti being unnoticed introduced and getting established in Switzerland through the import of breeding cattle from France, a total of 767 animals (650 cattle imported from France and 117 cattle that had contact with B. besnoiti positive cattle in Swiss farms) were screened for antibodies against B. besnoiti by both a commercial ELISA and by the indirect fluorescent antibody test (IFAT). A total of 101 (13.17%) samples showed a positive reaction in ELISA (cut-off: percent of positivity [PP] ≥ 15) and 16 (2.09%) samples had IFAT titers ≥ 1:100. Eight of those samples reacted positive in Western blot (WB), corresponding to five imported Limousin cattle (two cows and one bull from France and two cows from Germany) and to three cattle born in Switzerland (one Limousin heifer born from one of the positive German cows, and two adult Braunvieh cows, that had been in contact with one of the French cows at a Swiss farm). Seven of those animals were subclinically infected and one animal showed only very mild signs. They were subsequently slaughtered, and the serological diagnosis could be confirmed by real-time PCR and/or histopathology in seven animals. The most frequent parasite localizations were the tendons and surrounding connective tissue of the distal limbs and the skin of the head region. Furthermore, B. besnoiti could be successfully isolated in vitro from one French, one German and one Swiss cattle (isolates Bb-IPZ-1-CH, Bb-IPZ-2-CH and Bb-IPZ-3-CH). In the current situation in Switzerland, prophylactic and control measures should include a serological examination of cattle to be imported from endemic areas and the culling of all confirmed positive animals from

  4. Oocysts and high seroprevalence of Neospora caninum in dogs living in remote Aboriginal communities and wild dogs in Australia.

    PubMed

    King, Jessica S; Brown, Graeme K; Jenkins, David J; Ellis, John T; Fleming, Peter J S; Windsor, Peter A; Slapeta, Jan

    2012-06-01

    Canines are definitive hosts of Neospora caninum (Apicomplexa). For horizontal transmission from canines to occur, viable oocysts of N. caninum must occur in the environment of susceptible intermediate hosts. Canids in Australia include wild dogs and Aboriginal community dogs. Wild dogs are those dogs that are not dependent on humans for survival and consist of the dingo, feral domestic dog and their hybrid genotypes. Aboriginal community dogs are dependent on humans, domesticated and owned by a family, but are free-roaming and have free access throughout the community. In this study the extent of N. caninum infection was determined in a total of 374 dogs (75 wild dogs and 299 Aboriginal community dogs) using a combination of microscopic, molecular and serological techniques. Oocysts of N. caninum were observed in the faeces of two juvenile Aboriginal community dogs (2/132; 1.5%). To estimate N. caninum prevalence, a new optimised cut-off of 18.5% inhibition for a commercial competitive ELISA was calculated using a two-graph receiver-operating characteristic (TG-ROC) analysis and IFAT as the gold standard resulting in equal sensitivity and specificity of 67.8%. Of the 263 dog sera tested the true prevalence of N. caninum antibodies was 27.0% (95% confidence limit: 10.3-44.1%). The association between the competitive ELISA results in dogs less than 12 month old and older dogs was significant (P=0.042). To our knowledge this is the first large scale parasitological survey of the Aboriginal community dogs and wild dogs from Australia. The high prevalence of N. caninum infection in Aboriginal community dogs illustrates that horizontal transmission of N. caninum is occurring in Australia. These results demonstrated that N. caninum in dogs is widespread, including the semi-arid to arid regions of north-western New South Wales and the Northern Territory. The populations of free-ranging dogs are likely to be important contributors to the sylvatic life cycle of N. caninum

  5. Lysine Acetyltransferase GCN5b Interacts with AP2 Factors and Is Required for Toxoplasma gondii Proliferation

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jiachen; Dixon, Stacy E.; Ting, Li-Min; Liu, Ting-Kai; Jeffers, Victoria; Croken, Matthew M.; Calloway, Myrasol; Cannella, Dominique; Ali Hakimi, Mohamed; Kim, Kami; Sullivan, William J.

    2014-01-01

    Histone acetylation has been linked to developmental changes in gene expression and is a validated drug target of apicomplexan parasites, but little is known about the roles of individual histone modifying enzymes and how they are recruited to target genes. The protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii (phylum Apicomplexa) is unusual among invertebrates in possessing two GCN5-family lysine acetyltransferases (KATs). While GCN5a is required for gene expression in response to alkaline stress, this KAT is dispensable for parasite proliferation in normal culture conditions. In contrast, GCN5b cannot be disrupted, suggesting it is essential for Toxoplasma viability. To further explore the function of GCN5b, we generated clonal parasites expressing an inducible HA-tagged dominant-negative form of GCN5b containing a point mutation that ablates enzymatic activity (E703G). Stabilization of this dominant-negative GCN5b was mediated through ligand-binding to a destabilization domain (dd) fused to the protein. Induced accumulation of the ddHAGCN5b(E703G) protein led to a rapid arrest in parasite replication. Growth arrest was accompanied by a decrease in histone H3 acetylation at specific lysine residues as well as reduced expression of GCN5b target genes in GCN5b(E703G) parasites, which were identified using chromatin immunoprecipitation coupled with microarray hybridization (ChIP-chip). Proteomics studies revealed that GCN5b interacts with AP2-domain proteins, apicomplexan plant-like transcription factors, as well as a “core complex” that includes the co-activator ADA2-A, TFIID subunits, LEO1 polymerase-associated factor (Paf1) subunit, and RRM proteins. The dominant-negative phenotype of ddHAGCN5b(E703G) parasites, considered with the proteomics and ChIP-chip data, indicate that GCN5b plays a central role in transcriptional and chromatin remodeling complexes. We conclude that GCN5b has a non-redundant and indispensable role in regulating gene expression required during the

  6. ApiAP2 Factors as Candidate Regulators of Stochastic Commitment to Merozoite Production in Theileria annulata

    PubMed Central

    Pieszko, Marta; Weir, William; Goodhead, Ian; Kinnaird, Jane; Shiels, Brian

    2015-01-01

    , Babesia and Plasmodium, and other Apicomplexa; leading to the proposal that the mechanisms that control stage differentiation will show a degree of conservation. PMID:26273826

  7. Planktonic microbes in the Gulf of Maine area.

    PubMed

    Li, William K W; Andersen, Robert A; Gifford, Dian J; Incze, Lewis S; Martin, Jennifer L; Pilskaln, Cynthia H; Rooney-Varga, Juliette N; Sieracki, Michael E; Wilson, William H; Wolff, Nicholas H

    2011-01-01

    In the Gulf of Maine area (GoMA), as elsewhere in the ocean, the organisms of greatest numerical abundance are microbes. Viruses in GoMA are largely cyanophages and bacteriophages, including podoviruses which lack tails. There is also evidence of Mimivirus and Chlorovirus in the metagenome. Bacteria in GoMA comprise the dominant SAR11 phylotype cluster, and other abundant phylotypes such as SAR86-like cluster, SAR116-like cluster, Roseobacter, Rhodospirillaceae, Acidomicrobidae, Flavobacteriales, Cytophaga, and unclassified Alphaproteobacteria and Gammaproteobacteria clusters. Bacterial epibionts of the dinoflagellate Alexandrium fundyense include Rhodobacteraceae, Flavobacteriaceae, Cytophaga spp., Sulfitobacter spp., Sphingomonas spp., and unclassified Bacteroidetes. Phototrophic prokaryotes in GoMA include cyanobacteria that contain chlorophyll (mainly Synechococcus), aerobic anoxygenic phototrophs that contain bacteriochlorophyll, and bacteria that contain proteorhodopsin. Eukaryotic microalgae in GoMA include Bacillariophyceae, Dinophyceae, Prymnesiophyceae, Prasinophyceae, Trebouxiophyceae, Cryptophyceae, Dictyochophyceae, Chrysophyceae, Eustigmatophyceae, Pelagophyceae, Synurophyceae, and Xanthophyceae. There are no records of Bolidophyceae, Aurearenophyceae, Raphidophyceae, and Synchromophyceae in GoMA. In total, there are records for 665 names and 229 genera of microalgae. Heterotrophic eukaryotic protists in GoMA include Dinophyceae, Alveolata, Apicomplexa, amoeboid organisms, Labrynthulida, and heterotrophic marine stramenopiles (MAST). Ciliates include Strombidium, Lohmaniella, Tontonia, Strobilidium, Strombidinopsis and the mixotrophs Laboea strobila and Myrionecta rubrum (ex Mesodinium rubra). An inventory of selected microbial groups in each of 14 physiographic regions in GoMA is made by combining information on the depth-dependent variation of cell density and the depth-dependent variation of water volume. Across the entire GoMA, an estimate for the

  8. Architecture and evolution of dinoflagellate chromosomes: an enigmatic origin.

    PubMed

    Costas, E; Goyanes, V

    2005-01-01

    sequence studies propose that dinoflagellates are true eukaryotes, closely related to Apicomplexa, and ciliates (Alveolata), suggesting that the unusual features of chromosome and nuclear organization are not primitive but derived characters. Nevertheless, dinoflagellates have reached enigmatic specific nuclear and chromosome solutions, extremely far from those of other living beings.

  9. Toxoplasma gondii Cyclic AMP-Dependent Protein Kinase Subunit 3 Is Involved in the Switch from Tachyzoite to Bradyzoite Development

    PubMed Central

    Sugi, Tatsuki; Ma, Yan Fen; Tomita, Tadakimi; Murakoshi, Fumi; Eaton, Michael S.; Yakubu, Rama; Han, Bing; Tu, Vincent; Kato, Kentaro; Kawazu, Shin-Ichiro; Gupta, Nishith; Suvorova, Elena S.; White, Michael W.; Kim, Kami

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Toxoplasma gondii is an obligate intracellular apicomplexan parasite that infects warm-blooded vertebrates, including humans. Asexual reproduction in T. gondii allows it to switch between the rapidly replicating tachyzoite and quiescent bradyzoite life cycle stages. A transient cyclic AMP (cAMP) pulse promotes bradyzoite differentiation, whereas a prolonged elevation of cAMP inhibits this process. We investigated the mechanism(s) by which differential modulation of cAMP exerts a bidirectional effect on parasite differentiation. There are three protein kinase A (PKA) catalytic subunits (TgPKAc1 to -3) expressed in T. gondii. Unlike TgPKAc1 and TgPKAc2, which are conserved in the phylum Apicomplexa, TgPKAc3 appears evolutionarily divergent and specific to coccidian parasites. TgPKAc1 and TgPKAc2 are distributed in the cytomembranes, whereas TgPKAc3 resides in the cytosol. TgPKAc3 was genetically ablated in a type II cyst-forming strain of T. gondii (PruΔku80Δhxgprt) and in a type I strain (RHΔku80Δhxgprt), which typically does not form cysts. The Δpkac3 mutant exhibited slower growth than the parental and complemented strains, which correlated with a higher basal rate of tachyzoite-to-bradyzoite differentiation. 3-Isobutyl-1-methylxanthine (IBMX) treatment, which elevates cAMP levels, maintained wild-type parasites as tachyzoites under bradyzoite induction culture conditions (pH 8.2/low CO2), whereas the Δpkac3 mutant failed to respond to the treatment. This suggests that TgPKAc3 is the factor responsible for the cAMP-dependent tachyzoite maintenance. In addition, the Δpkac3 mutant had a defect in the production of brain cysts in vivo, suggesting that a substrate of TgPKAc3 is probably involved in the persistence of this parasite in the intermediate host animals. PMID:27247232

  10. Utilization of inherent miRNAs in functional analyses of Toxoplasma gondii genes.

    PubMed

    Crater, Anna K; Manni, Emad; Ananvoranich, Sirinart

    2015-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are crucial genetic effectors partaking in numerous mechanisms of gene regulation in eukaryotic organisms. Recent discoveries of miRNA in Toxoplasma gondii, an intracellular obligate parasite of the phylum Apicomplexa, suggested possible roles of T. gondii miRNAs (Tg-miRNAs) in the post-transcriptional gene regulation and in the cell biology of the parasite. To gain a better understanding of the involvement of Tg-miRNAs in regulating the parasite gene expression, a dual luciferase reporter system was used in the examination and evaluation of the effects of endogenous Tg-miRNAs, their mimics and inhibitors. A Renilla luciferase (Rnluc) transcript was engineered to carry independent binding sites of two abundant species, namely Tg-miR-60a and Tg-miR-4a, so that the expression of Rnluc was silenced in a sequence specific manner by Tg-miR-60a and Tg-miR-4a. Notably, Tg-miR-60a, but not Tg-miR-4a, caused the levels of Rnluc transcripts to decrease. These findings strongly suggested that T. gondii employs the Tg-miRNA species-specific mode of silencing actions: transcript degradation by Tg-miR-60a, and translational suppression by Tg-miR-4a. Herein we developed a genetic system that exploits and directs the most abundant Tg-miR-60a for loss-of-function analyses in T. gondii. As a proof of principle, we showed that when the binding sites for Tg-miR-60a were introduced into the parasite transcripts via homologous recombination at the locus of (i) DEAD-box RNA helicase (TgHoDI), or (ii) lactate dehydrogenase isoform 1 (TgLDH1), the expression levels of the selected genes can be altered. It was thus proven that inherit Tg-miR-60a could be directed and used to assist in the loss-of-function analyses.

  11. A complex small RNA repertoire is generated by a plant/fungal-like machinery and effected by a metazoan-like Argonaute in the single-cell human parasite Toxoplasma gondii.

    PubMed

    Braun, Laurence; Cannella, Dominique; Ortet, Philippe; Barakat, Mohamed; Sautel, Céline F; Kieffer, Sylvie; Garin, Jérôme; Bastien, Olivier; Voinnet, Olivier; Hakimi, Mohamed-Ali

    2010-05-27

    In RNA silencing, small RNAs produced by the RNase-III Dicer guide Argonaute-like proteins as part of RNA-induced silencing complexes (RISC) to regulate gene expression transcriptionally or post-transcriptionally. Here, we have characterized the RNA silencing machinery and exhaustive small RNAome of Toxoplasma gondii, member of the Apicomplexa, a phylum of animal- and human-infecting parasites that cause extensive health and economic damages to human populations worldwide. Remarkably, the small RNA-generating machinery of Toxoplasma is phylogenetically and functionally related to that of plants and fungi, and accounts for an exceptionally diverse array of small RNAs. This array includes conspicuous populations of repeat-associated small interfering RNA (siRNA), which, as in plants, likely generate and maintain heterochromatin at DNA repeats and satellites. Toxoplasma small RNAs also include many microRNAs with clear metazoan-like features whose accumulation is sometimes extremely high and dynamic, an unexpected finding given that Toxoplasma is a unicellular protist. Both plant-like heterochromatic small RNAs and metazoan-like microRNAs bind to a single Argonaute protein, Tg-AGO. Toxoplasma miRNAs co-sediment with polyribosomes, and thus, are likely to act as translational regulators, consistent with the lack of catalytic residues in Tg-AGO. Mass spectrometric analyses of the Tg-AGO protein complex revealed a common set of virtually all known RISC components so far characterized in human and Drosophila, as well as novel proteins involved in RNA metabolism. In agreement with its loading with heterochromatic small RNAs, Tg-AGO also associates substoichiometrically with components of known chromatin-repressing complexes. Thus, a puzzling patchwork of silencing processor and effector proteins from plant, fungal and metazoan origin accounts for the production and action of an unsuspected variety of small RNAs in the single-cell parasite Toxoplasma and possibly in other

  12. Identification of T. gondii Myosin Light Chain-1 as a Direct Target of TachypleginA-2, a Small-Molecule Inhibitor of Parasite Motility and Invasion

    PubMed Central

    Leung, Jacqueline M.; Tran, Fanny; Pathak, Ravindra B.; Poupart, Séverine; Heaslip, Aoife T.; Ballif, Bryan A.; Westwood, Nicholas J.; Ward, Gary E.

    2014-01-01

    Motility of the protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii plays an important role in the parasite’s life cycle and virulence within animal and human hosts. Motility is driven by a myosin motor complex that is highly conserved across the Phylum Apicomplexa. Two key components of this complex are the class XIV unconventional myosin, TgMyoA, and its associated light chain, TgMLC1. We previously showed that treatment of parasites with a small-molecule inhibitor of T. gondii invasion and motility, tachypleginA, induces an electrophoretic mobility shift of TgMLC1 that is associated with decreased myosin motor activity. However, the direct target(s) of tachypleginA and the molecular basis of the compound-induced TgMLC1 modification were unknown. We show here by “click” chemistry labelling that TgMLC1 is a direct and covalent target of an alkyne-derivatized analogue of tachypleginA. We also show that this analogue can covalently bind to model thiol substrates. The electrophoretic mobility shift induced by another structural analogue, tachypleginA-2, was associated with the formation of a 225.118 Da adduct on S57 and/or C58, and treatment with deuterated tachypleginA-2 confirmed that the adduct was derived from the compound itself. Recombinant TgMLC1 containing a C58S mutation (but not S57A) was refractory to click labelling and no longer exhibited a mobility shift in response to compound treatment, identifying C58 as the site of compound binding on TgMLC1. Finally, a knock-in parasite line expressing the C58S mutation showed decreased sensitivity to compound treatment in a quantitative 3D motility assay. These data strongly support a model in which tachypleginA and its analogues inhibit the motility of T. gondii by binding directly and covalently to C58 of TgMLC1, thereby causing a decrease in the activity of the parasite’s myosin motor. PMID:24892871

  13. Morphological and molecular characterization of Isospora manorinae n. sp. in a yellow-throated miner (Manorina flavigula wayensis) (Gould, 1840).

    PubMed

    Yang, Rongchang; Brice, Belinda; Jian, Fuchun; Ryan, Una

    2016-04-01

    A new Isospora (Apicomplexa:Eimeriidae) species is described from a single yellow-throated miner bird (Manorina flavigula) (subspecies M. f. wayensis) in Western Australia. Sporulated oocysts (n = 32) of this isolate are spherical to subspherical, 22.8 (20.3-23.8) × 18.3 (17.7-18.7) μm, with a shape index (length/width) of 1.25 (1.2-1.3); and a smooth and bilayered oocyst wall, 1.3 μm thick (outer layer 0.9 μm, inner 0.4 μm). A polar granule is present, but the micropyle and oocyst residuum are absent. The sporocysts are lemon-shaped, 15.5 (14.6-15.8) × 9.5 (9.5-10.2) μm, with a shape index of 1.6. Stieda and substieda bodies are present, the Stieda body being knob-like and the substieda body being subspherical-shaped. A sporocyst residuum is present and composed of numerous granules of different size scattered among the sporozoites, a spheroid or subspheroid refractile body is present in the sporozoite. Morphologically, the oocysts from this isolate are different from those of all known valid Isospora spp. Molecular analysis was conducted at 3 loci; the 18S and 28S ribosomal RNA and the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase (COI) gene. At the 18S locus, this new isolate exhibited 99.2% similarity to Isospora gryphoni and three other Isospora spp. Further analysis of a subgroup of 300 bp long 18S sequences (8), including Isospora anthochaerae was conducted. This new isolate grouped in a clade with I. anthochaerae and exhibited 99.3% similarity. At the 28S locus, this new isolate grouped with I. anthochaerae with which it shared 99.1% similarity. At the COI locus, this new isolate exhibited 96.8% similarity to Isospora sp. JCI-2015 from a spectacled warbler (Sylvia conspicillata) in Spain. Further analysis from a subgroup of shorter COI sequences (n = 13) was performed and this new isolate exhibited 99.1% similarity to I. anthochaerae. Based on morphological and molecular data, this isolate is a new species of Isospora, which is named Isospora manorinae n. sp

  14. Kingdom protozoa and its 18 phyla.

    PubMed Central

    Cavalier-Smith, T

    1993-01-01

    flattened cristae]); (ii) Alveolata (three phyla with cortical alveoli and tubular mitochondrial cristae, i.e., Dinozoa [Dinoflagellata and Protalveolata], Apicomplexa, and Ciliophora); (iii) Neosarcodina (phyla Rhizopoda [lobose and filose amoebae] and Reticulosa [foraminifera; reticulopodial amoebae], usually with tubular cristae); (iv) Actinopoda (two phyla with axopodia: Heliozoa and Radiozoa [Radiolaria, Acantharia]); (v) Entamoebia (a single phylum of amoebae with no mitochondria, peroxisomes, hydrogenosomes, or cilia and with transient intranuclear centrosomes); (vi) Myxozoa (three endoparasitic phyla with multicellular spores, mitochondria, and no cilia: Myxosporidia, Haplosporidia, and Paramyxia); and (vii) Mesozoa (multicells with tubular mitochondrial cristae, included in Protozoa because, unlike animals, they lack collagenous connective tissue). PMID:8302218

  15. Antiprotozoan lead discovery by aligning dry and wet screening: prediction, synthesis, and biological assay of novel quinoxalinones.

    PubMed

    Martins Alho, Miriam A; Marrero-Ponce, Yovani; Barigye, Stephen J; Meneses-Marcel, Alfredo; Machado Tugores, Yanetsy; Montero-Torres, Alina; Gómez-Barrio, Alicia; Nogal, Juan J; García-Sánchez, Rory N; Vega, María Celeste; Rolón, Miriam; Martínez-Fernández, Antonio R; Escario, José A; Pérez-Giménez, Facundo; Garcia-Domenech, Ramón; Rivera, Norma; Mondragón, Ricardo; Mondragón, Mónica; Ibarra-Velarde, Froylán; Lopez-Arencibia, Atteneri; Martín-Navarro, Carmen; Lorenzo-Morales, Jacob; Cabrera-Serra, Maria Gabriela; Piñero, Jose; Tytgat, Jan; Chicharro, Roberto; Arán, Vicente J

    2014-03-01

    which the individual QSAR outputs are the inputs of the aforementioned fusion approach. Finally, the fusion model was used for the identification of a novel generation of lead-like antiprotozoan compounds by using ligand-based virtual screening of 'available' small molecules (with synthetic feasibility) in our 'in-house' library. A new molecular subsystem (quinoxalinones) was then theoretically selected as a promising lead series, and its derivatives subsequently synthesized, structurally characterized, and experimentally assayed by using in vitro screening that took into consideration a battery of five parasite-based assays. The chemicals 11(12) and 16 are the most active (hits) against apicomplexa (sporozoa) and mastigophora (flagellata) subphylum parasites, respectively. Both compounds depicted good activity in every protozoan in vitro panel and they did not show unspecific cytotoxicity on the host cells. The described technical framework seems to be a promising QSAR-classifier tool for the molecular discovery and development of novel classes of broad-antiprotozoan-spectrum drugs, which may meet the dual challenges posed by drug-resistant parasites and the rapid progression of protozoan illnesses.

  16. [Measuring resistant forms of two pathogenic protozoa (Giardia spp and Cryptosporidium spp) in two aquatic biotopes in Yaoundé (Cameroon)].

    PubMed

    Gideon, Aghaindum Ajeagah; Njiné, Thomas; Nola, Moïse; Menbohan, Samuel Foto; Ndayo, Marguerite Wouafo

    2007-01-01

    Organisms of the genera Cryptosporidium and Giardia are enteric parasites that are responsible for cryptosporidiosis and giardiasis respectively. They are characterised by profuse diarrhoea, abdominal pain and cramping. The symptoms can be fatal for immunodepressed subjects and children because these are opportunistic pathogens. These pathogenic infections are rampant in developing countries due to the unhygienic and improper disposal of wastewater and the use of surface water as the major sources of potable water. Little information is available about the resistant forms of these microorganisms in the hydrosystems of Cameroon in particular and other sub-Saharan ecosystems in general. The aim of this research was to isolate, identify, and measure these forms of these emerging protozoa in the waste and surface waters of Yaoundé, Cameroon. Giardia spp cysts were identified by Lugol iodine staining, and the Cryptosporidium spp oocysts by the Ziehl-Neelsen technique. The cysts were oval in structure and varied in length from 7 um to 12.0 um. Axostyles were visible along the median line and nuclei were present. The oocysts were round in structure and varied in diameter from 4 um to 6 um. A double cell wall was seen in the apicomplexa. The highest concentrations of Giardia spp cysts were 560 cysts/L in the surface water and 650 cysts/L in the residual effluent, while the corresponding figures for Cryptosporidium spp were 1,110 oocysts/L in the stream and 1,500 oocysts/L in the effluent. The cyst and oocyst counts were higher in the direct effluent because they are released directly into the wastewater by feces, while they are diluted in the surface water, reducing their abundance. Turbidity has a significant effect (p<0.05) on the population dynamics of these microorganisms, thereby indicating the importance of suspended or colloidal particles in the dissemination of these pathogens in aquatic media. The suspended particles in the wastewater adsorb the oocysts and cysts

  17. Antiprotozoan lead discovery by aligning dry and wet screening: prediction, synthesis, and biological assay of novel quinoxalinones.

    PubMed

    Martins Alho, Miriam A; Marrero-Ponce, Yovani; Barigye, Stephen J; Meneses-Marcel, Alfredo; Machado Tugores, Yanetsy; Montero-Torres, Alina; Gómez-Barrio, Alicia; Nogal, Juan J; García-Sánchez, Rory N; Vega, María Celeste; Rolón, Miriam; Martínez-Fernández, Antonio R; Escario, José A; Pérez-Giménez, Facundo; Garcia-Domenech, Ramón; Rivera, Norma; Mondragón, Ricardo; Mondragón, Mónica; Ibarra-Velarde, Froylán; Lopez-Arencibia, Atteneri; Martín-Navarro, Carmen; Lorenzo-Morales, Jacob; Cabrera-Serra, Maria Gabriela; Piñero, Jose; Tytgat, Jan; Chicharro, Roberto; Arán, Vicente J

    2014-03-01

    which the individual QSAR outputs are the inputs of the aforementioned fusion approach. Finally, the fusion model was used for the identification of a novel generation of lead-like antiprotozoan compounds by using ligand-based virtual screening of 'available' small molecules (with synthetic feasibility) in our 'in-house' library. A new molecular subsystem (quinoxalinones) was then theoretically selected as a promising lead series, and its derivatives subsequently synthesized, structurally characterized, and experimentally assayed by using in vitro screening that took into consideration a battery of five parasite-based assays. The chemicals 11(12) and 16 are the most active (hits) against apicomplexa (sporozoa) and mastigophora (flagellata) subphylum parasites, respectively. Both compounds depicted good activity in every protozoan in vitro panel and they did not show unspecific cytotoxicity on the host cells. The described technical framework seems to be a promising QSAR-classifier tool for the molecular discovery and development of novel classes of broad-antiprotozoan-spectrum drugs, which may meet the dual challenges posed by drug-resistant parasites and the rapid progression of protozoan illnesses. PMID:24513185

  18. [New drugs for the treatment of human parasitic protozoa].

    PubMed

    Dupouy-Camet, J

    2004-06-01

    dogs. Liposomal amphotricin is an alternative of choice but remains very expensive. The heating of amphotericin to 70 degrees C during 20 minutes gives it experimental properties and efficacies comparable with that of liposomal amphotericin, but at a less cost. Miltefosine, an alkyl-phospholipide antimetabolite, is very active on visceral leishmaniasis resistant to antimonial treatment. However, its long half-life could induce the emergence of resistances. Miltefosine induces much less side effects than conventional amphotericin B. The commonly used anti-toxoplasmic drugs (sulphadiazine and pyrimethamine) were marketed some 50 years ago and are only active on the rapid forms in multiplication. No drug is really efficient on the cysts although preliminary tests with atovaquone are encouraging to treat ophthalmologic forms in immunocompetent patients. To conclude, it is important to continue to search for new antiprotozoan molecules because, for some parasites, drug resistance is an important problem. Moreover, the treatment of the pregnant women, particularly during the first trimester, is often impossible and there is a lack of galenic forms easily usable in children. A better knowledge of the metabolic pathways of protozoa (particularly the apicoplast of Apicomplexa parasites) would certainly open the posssibility to identify new drugs. To reduce and delay the appearance of resistances, mass-treatments of mass should be avoided and targeted treatments prefered as well as the use of associations of molecules having different modes of action. PMID:15305692