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Cryptic speciation of the zoogonid digenean Diphterostomum flavum n. sp. demonstrated by morphological and molecular data
Gilardoni, C.; Etchegoin, J.; Cribb, T.; Pina, S.; Rodrigues, P.; Diez, M.E.; Cremonte, F. (2020). Cryptic speciation of the zoogonid digenean Diphterostomum flavum n. sp. demonstrated by morphological and molecular data. Parasite 27: 44.
In: Parasite. PDG Communication/Princeps Editions: Paris. ISSN 1252-607X; e-ISSN 1776-1042, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 

    Pinguipes brasilianus Cuvier, 1829 [WoRMS]; Zoogonidae Odhner, 1902 [WoRMS]
Author keywords
    Life cycle / Zoogonidae / Pinguipes brasilianus / Cryptic species / Patagonian coast

Authors  Top 
  • Gilardoni, C.
  • Etchegoin, J.
  • Cribb, T.
  • Pina, S.
  • Rodrigues, P.
  • Diez, M.E.
  • Cremonte, F.

    Diphterostomum brusinae (Zoogonidae) is a digenean species that has been recorded worldwide parasitizing marine fishes. Several species have been synonymized with D. brusinae because they lack conspicuous morphological differences. However, due to the breadth of its geographic distribution and the variety of hosts involved in the life cycles, it is likely to be an assemblage of cryptic species. Diphterostomum flavum n. sp. is described here as a morphologically cryptic relative of D. brusinae, in the fish Pinguipes brasilianus (Pinguipedidae) off the Patagonian coast, Southwestern Atlantic Ocean, and its life cycle is elucidated through morphology and molecular analysis. This species uses the gastropod Buccinanops deformis (Nassariidae) as first and second intermediate host with metacercariae encysting within sporocysts. They also, however, use the polychaete Kinbergonuphis dorsalis (Onuphidae) as second intermediate host. No morphological differences were found between adults of D. flavum n. sp. and D. brusinae; however, the number of penetration glands of the cercariae, a diagnostic feature, differed (9 vs. 3 pairs), as well as the ITS2 sequences for the two species. This work provides morphological and molecular evidence of cryptic diversification among species described as D. brusinae, in which the only clear differences are in larval morphology and host spectrum. The strict specificity to the snail acting as the first intermediate host and the variety of fishes with different feeding habits acting as definitive hosts support the likely existence of multiple cryptic species around the world.

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