Folia Parasitologica, vol. 61 (2014), issue 6

Folia Parasitologica 61[6] 495-504 (2014) | DOI: 10.14411/fp.2014.064

High prevalence of trypanosome co-infections in freshwater fishes

Anastasiia Grybchuk-Ieremenko1, Alexander Losev1,2, Alexei Yu. Kostygov1,3, Julius Lukeš4,5, Vyacheslav Yurchenko1,4
1 Life Science Research Centre, Faculty of Science, University of Ostrava, Ostrava, Czech Republic;
2 Schmalhausen Institute of Zoology, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine;
3 Zoological Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg, Russia;
4 Biology Centre, Institute of Parasitology, Czech Academy of Sciences, České Budějovice, Czech Republic;
5 Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia, České Budějovice, Czech Republic

One thousand three hundred seventy three fish specimens of eight different species from the vicinity of Kyiv, Ukraine, were examined for the presence of trypanosomes and 921 individuals were found to be infected. The prevalence of infection ranged from 24% in freshwater bream, Abramis brama (Linnaeus), to 100 % in spined loach, Cobitis 'taenia' Linnaeus. The level of parasitaemia also varied significantly between generally mild infections in pikeperch, Sander lucioperca (Linnaeus), and heavy ones in C. 'taenia'. In most cases the infections with trypanosomes were asymptomatic. Cases of co-infection with species of Trypanoplasma Laveran et Mesnil, 1901 were documented for five out of eight examined host species. Molecular analysis of the 18S rDNA sequences revealed that four hosts, namely northern pike, Esox lucius Linnaeus, freshwater bream, spined loach and European perch, Perca fluviatilis Linnaeus, were simultaneously infected with two different trypanosome species. Our findings advocate the view that to avoid the risk posed by mixed infections, subsequent molecular taxonomic studies should be performed on clonal lines derived from laboratory cultures of fish trypanosomes.

Keywords: Trypanosoma, blood parasites, mixed infections, phylogeny, 18S rRNA, teleosts

Received: May 21, 2014; Accepted: July 21, 2014; Prepublished online: October 29, 2014; Published: December 4, 2014


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