Farjallah, Sarra and Ben Slimane, Badreddine and Piras, Cristina Maria and Amor, Nabil and Garippa, Giovanni and Merella, Paolo (2013) Molecular characterization of Fasciola hepatica from Sardinia based on sequence analysis of genomic and mitochondrial gene markers. Experimental Parasitology, Vol. 135 (3), p. 471-478. ISSN 0014-4894. Article.
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The aim of the present study is to investigate for the first time the genetic diversity of samples identified morphologically as Fasciola hepatica (Platyhelminthes: Trematoda: Digenea) (n= 66) from sheep and cattle from two localities of Sardinia and to compare them with available data from other localities by partial sequences of the first (ITS-1), the 5.8S, and second (ITS-2) Internal Transcribed Spacers (ITS) of nuclear ribosomal DNA (rDNA) genes, the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI), and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide dehydrogenase subunit I (ND1) genes. Comparison of the sequences from Sardinia with sequences of Fasciola spp. from GenBank confirmed that all samples belong to the species F. hepatica. The nucleotide sequencing of ITS rDNA showed no nucleotide variation in the ITS-1, 5.8S and ITS-2 rDNA sequences among all Sardinian samples, comparing with two ITS-2 haplotypes in standard F. hepatica, showing a substitution C/T in 20 position 859, reported previously from Tunisia, Algeria, Australia, Uruguay and Spain. The present study shows that in Sardinian sheep and cattle there is the most frequent haplotype (FhITS-H1) of F. hepatica species from South Europe. Considering NDI sequences, the phylogenetic trees showed reliable grouping among the haplotypes of F. hepatica from Sardinia and the mitochondrial lineage I, including the main N1 haplotype, observed previously from Europe (Russia, Belarus, Ukraine and Bulgaria), Armenia, West Africa (Nigeria), America (Uruguay and USA), Asia (Turkey, Japan, and China), Georgia, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan and Australia. Furthermore, common haplotypes FhCOI-H1 and FhCOI-H2 of F. hepatica from Sardinia also corresponded mostly to the first lineage including the main C1 haplotype reported previously from Eastern European and Western Asian populations, they belonged just to a phylogenically distinguishable clade, as F. hepatica from Australia, France, Turkey, Uruguay, Russia, Armenia, Ukraine, Belarus, Turkmenistan, USA, Tunisia and Algeria, indicating that this is the main haplotype involved in the spread of F. hepatica throughout all continents.
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