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Syndesmis François, 1886 (Rhabdocoela: Umagillidae): a revisitation, with a synopsis and an identification key to species, and new molecular evidence for ascertaining the phylogeny of the group
Cavaleiro, F.I.; Frade, D.G.; Rangel, L.F.; Santos, M.J. (2018). Syndesmis François, 1886 (Rhabdocoela: Umagillidae): a revisitation, with a synopsis and an identification key to species, and new molecular evidence for ascertaining the phylogeny of the group. Syst. Parasitol. 95(2-3): 147-171. https://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s11230-018-9781-5
In: Systematic Parasitology. Kluwer: The Hague; Dordrecht. ISSN 0165-5752; e-ISSN 1573-5192, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Keyword
    Syndesmis Silliman, 1881 [WoRMS]

Authors  Top 
  • Cavaleiro, F.I.
  • Frade, D.G.
  • Rangel, L.F.
  • Santos, M.J.

Abstract
    Syndesmis François, 1886 is a genus of umagillid turbellarians comprising species which are typically endosymbionts of echinoids, i.e. sea urchins. This group is likely key in addressing the issue of transition between a free-living and a parasitic mode of life in the Platyhelminthes. Accordingly, its phylogeny should be considered for detailed analysis, namely by addressing molecular evidence for its different species. At the present time, a revisitation of Syndesmis is required and fully justified by the following lines of argument: (i) the body of knowledge on Syndesmis is large, but the information is scattered through many different works in the literature; (ii) for about 60 years, it was a common practice to assign the umagillids isolated from sea urchins as a single species, i.e. the type-species, Syndesmis echinorum François, 1886, which was later split into several species on morphological grounds; and (iii) the type-species - for which no molecular information is available - was redescribed and new species were described in recent years but the generic diagnosis of Syndesmis was not emended accordingly. The present state of art additionally justifies the necessity of (i) an updated synopsis of species and (ii) an identification key to the 26 species described from different hosts and geographical locations. All these aspects define the aims of the present study. It is proposed that S. antillarum is attributed to Stunkard & Corliss (1951) and not to Powers (1936).

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