Morphological and molecular analysis of metacercariae of Diphtherostomum brusinae (Stossich, 1888) Stossich, 1903 from a new bivalve host Mytilus galloprovincialis.
Journal - Journal of helminthology
The digenean trematode Diphtherostomum brusinae (Stossich, 1888) Stossich, 1903 presents a complex life cycle that may involve more than one intermediate host. The present study represents the first description of the metacercariae from D. brusinae infecting the labial palps of a new intermediate host, Mytilus galloprovincialis, in the Aveiro estuary, Portugal. The morphology of this parasitic stage was studied by light (LM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and some differences were reported (body and sucker sizes, and spine distribution and shape). In this work, the 18S partial region of the ribosomal DNA was sequenced from D. brusinae metacercariae isolated from M. galloprovincialis collected in different localities of the Aveiro estuary. In addition, sequences from the same region of the 18S rDNA were obtained from D. brusinae cercariae and metacercariae, hosted by Nassarius reticulatus and Cerastoderma edule, respectively. No intraspecific polymorphism was detected in the 18S partial region, since there was 100% homology among all the sequences analysed. The same comparison was made for the ITS1, and we observed intraspecific polymorphism in this region. To our knowledge, this is the first report of D. brusinae metacercariae infecting the mussel M. galloprovincialis with support from morphological and molecular data.