Diversity, Taxonomy and Systematics of Fish Parasites

A special issue of Diversity (ISSN 1424-2818). This special issue belongs to the section "Animal Diversity".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 July 2024 | Viewed by 9944

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
1. Adjunct Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Charlotte, NC 28223, USA
2. Water Research Group, Unit for Environmental Sciences and Management, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, 11 Hofmann Street, Potchefstroom 2520, South Africa
Interests: zoology; molecular biology; parasitology; helminth fish parasites; monogenea; taxonomy; molecular systematics

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Guest Editor
1. Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Federal University of São Paulo (Unifesp), Rua Professor Arthur Riedel, 275, Jardim Eldorado, Diadema, São Paulo 09972‑270, Brazil
2. Department of Microbiology, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331, USA
Interests: zoology; parasitology; molecular biology; fish parasites; myxozoa; nematode; taxonomy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Parasitism is believed to have evolved in aquatic organisms; consequently, these ecosystems hold a remarkable diversity of parasites. However, parasites are still one of the least studied groups in species inventory, even though it is estimated that parasitic species compose half of the Earth’s biodiversity. Fish present the greatest magnitude and variety of parasites among all vertebrate classes since these organisms have lived for a long period of time in strict association with a considerable number of distinct invertebrates. Documenting new parasite species in fish hosts contributes towards the inventory of our planet’s biodiversity, as do reports of new hosts and localities. Furthermore, taxonomy and systematics constitute the basis for other applied research, such as ecology and evolution. Therefore, the systematic characterization of parasitic taxa represents the very first step towards a better comprehension of host–parasite interactions, their phylogeny, and ecological drivers.

In the context of fish parasites, we are still very far from a complete species inventory, given that a great proportion of taxa still await discovery. Therefore, this Special Issue aims to advance the knowledge of fish (encompassing Osteichthyes and Chondrichthyes) parasites (uni and multicellular) by documenting new host and locality records, adding new parasite taxa to science, and elucidating host–parasite relationships. To this end, we welcome manuscripts mainly addressing the parasite diversity and ecology of poorly investigated fish hosts, new fish parasite taxa description (preferably by means of integrative taxonomy), the molecular phylogenetics of fish parasites, and novel insights into fish host–parasite systems.

Dr. Aline A. Acosta
Dr. Maria I. Müller
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • fish parasite diversity
  • fish parasite ecology
  • host-parasite relationships
  • taxonomy
  • systematics
  • molecular phylogenetics
  • integrative taxonomy

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

16 pages, 1749 KiB  
Article
Low Genetic and Parasite Diversity of Invasive Pumpkinseed Lepomis gibbosus (Centrarchidae) Expanding in Türkiye
by Yuriy Kvach, Maria Yu. Tkachenko, Daniela Giannetto, Robert Míč, Veronika Bartáková, Sevan Ağdamar, Gülşah Saç, Müfit Özuluğ, Ali Serhan Tarkan and Markéta Ondračková
Diversity 2024, 16(5), 272; https://doi.org/10.3390/d16050272 - 1 May 2024
Viewed by 614
Abstract
Multiple factors can facilitate invasion success, with the absence of natural enemies, such as predators and parasites, recognised as conferring a significant advantage on invasive over native species. Pumpkinseed Lepomis gibbosus (Centrarchidae) represents one of the most successful freshwater fish invaders in Europe. [...] Read more.
Multiple factors can facilitate invasion success, with the absence of natural enemies, such as predators and parasites, recognised as conferring a significant advantage on invasive over native species. Pumpkinseed Lepomis gibbosus (Centrarchidae) represents one of the most successful freshwater fish invaders in Europe. Previous research has highlighted genetic differences between pumpkinseed populations in Türkiye and those in other European regions, attributed to rapid adaptation to new environmental conditions. This study aimed to investigate whether these highly adapted pumpkinseed populations in Türkiye benefit from a potential release from parasites, as proposed by the enemy-release hypothesis. Genetic characterisation of pumpkinseed populations from both European and Asian parts of Türkiye revealed that they share the same cytochrome c oxidase I haplotype as European populations. Microsatellite analysis indicated low genetic diversity, with STRUCTURE analysis confirming the clustering of all Turkish populations, suggesting a common source. Consistent with the low genetic diversity indicative of a small founding population, we observed a limited number of co-introduced parasite species, including the myxozoan Myxobolus dechtiari, the monogenean Onchocleidus dispar, and the digenean Posthodiplostomum centrarchi. Parasite infection by local parasites acquired in Türkiye was rare. Parasite diversity, species richness, and equitability were low, with only nine parasite taxa identified in all four pumpkinseed populations. The most diverse parasite community was found in Değirmenköy Reservoir, located in the European part of Türkiye, where seven parasite taxa were identified. While our study did not uncover genetically distinct pumpkinseed populations in Türkiye, the fish demonstrated resilience against most local parasite species, potentially providing them with an advantage over native species, aligning with the enemy-release hypothesis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diversity, Taxonomy and Systematics of Fish Parasites)
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13 pages, 6578 KiB  
Article
Redescription and First Nucleotide Sequences of Opecoeloides pedicathedrae (Digenea: Opecoelidae), a Parasite of Cynoscion leiarchus (Cuvier, 1830) (Eupercaria: Sciaenidae) from Brazil
by Melissa Querido Cárdenas, Simone Chinicz Cohen, Amanda Gleyce Lima de Oliveira, Marcia Cristina Nascimento Justo and Cláudia Portes Santos
Diversity 2024, 16(4), 197; https://doi.org/10.3390/d16040197 - 26 Mar 2024
Viewed by 753
Abstract
Opecoeloides Odhner, 1928, is represented by 19 valid species found in marine fish, of which five have been reported in Brazil. Specimens of Opecoeloides pedicathedrae Travassos, Freitas & Bührnheim, 1966, were collected from the intestine of smooth weakfish Cynoscion leiarchus, a new [...] Read more.
Opecoeloides Odhner, 1928, is represented by 19 valid species found in marine fish, of which five have been reported in Brazil. Specimens of Opecoeloides pedicathedrae Travassos, Freitas & Bührnheim, 1966, were collected from the intestine of smooth weakfish Cynoscion leiarchus, a new host record, from off the coast of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. They were examined using light and confocal laser microscopy. New partial sequences of 18S and 28S rDNA genes of O. pedicathedrae were obtained. Bayesian inference analysis on the partial 28S rDNA dataset resulted in a phylogram in which O. pedicathedrae formed a well-supported clade with Opecoeloides fimbriatus and Opecoeloides furcatus. The K2p distance between O. pedicathedrae and O. fimbriatus was 0.34%, with 3 divergent nucleotides; and between O. pedicathedrae and O. furcatus was 4.18%, with 38 divergent nucleotides. A Bayesian-inference phylogenetic tree based on the 18S rDNA recovered two main clades with five subfamilies. A clade of Opecoelinae showed that O. pedicathedrae was closer to Pseudopecoeloides tenuis; the K2p distance between these species was 2.14%, with 28 divergent nucleotides. The new nucleotide sequences presented inclusion of a phylogenetic analysis that can help to clarify the understanding of this complex taxon. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diversity, Taxonomy and Systematics of Fish Parasites)
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9 pages, 1669 KiB  
Communication
The Diversity of Metazoan Parasites of South American Stromateidae (Pisces: Teleostei) Is Related to Marine Biogeography
by Marcelo E. Oliva, Luis A. Ñacari, Ruben Escribano and José L. Luque
Diversity 2024, 16(2), 108; https://doi.org/10.3390/d16020108 - 7 Feb 2024
Viewed by 958
Abstract
The diversity of parasite communities is mainly driven by evolutionary history, as well as the ecology of the host species. To test whether the diversity of the parasite community of four related Stromateidae (Pisces: Scombriformes) is related to evolutionary history (the host phylogeny) [...] Read more.
The diversity of parasite communities is mainly driven by evolutionary history, as well as the ecology of the host species. To test whether the diversity of the parasite community of four related Stromateidae (Pisces: Scombriformes) is related to evolutionary history (the host phylogeny) or the host’s geographical distribution, we analyzed the metazoan parasite fauna of four species of fishes of this family, from the Pacific and Atlantic coasts of South America. Studied species were Peprilus snyderi (samples from Callao, Perú, and Antofagasta, Chile), Peprilus medius (Chorrillos, Perú), Peprilus paru (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) and Stromateus stellatus (Talcahuano, Chile). Our multivariate analysis strongly suggests that the diversity of the parasite fauna of the studied fishes is driven mainly by the host’s geographical distribution and not the host phylogeny. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diversity, Taxonomy and Systematics of Fish Parasites)
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35 pages, 13740 KiB  
Article
Integrative Morphological and Genetic Characterisation of the Fish Parasitic Copepod Ergasilus mirabilis Oldewage & van As, 1987: Insights into Host Specificity and Distribution in Southern Africa
by Precious P. Fikiye, Nico J. Smit, Liesl L. Van As, Marliese Truter and Kerry A. Hadfield
Diversity 2023, 15(9), 965; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15090965 - 26 Aug 2023
Viewed by 1206
Abstract
Ergasilids are external parasites typically found on the gills and fins of their hosts. In Africa, 19 species of Ergasilus von Nordmann, 1832 are reported. Of those, Ergasilus mirabilis Oldewage & van As, 1987 is one of the least host-specific, with a wide [...] Read more.
Ergasilids are external parasites typically found on the gills and fins of their hosts. In Africa, 19 species of Ergasilus von Nordmann, 1832 are reported. Of those, Ergasilus mirabilis Oldewage & van As, 1987 is one of the least host-specific, with a wide distribution range in southern Africa. As with most species in the genus, genetic data are not available to support the morphological placement of this species within the genus. Specimens representing E. mirabilis were obtained from the gills of Clarias gariepinus (Burchell, 1822) collected from several localities in South Africa and Zambia. Fish were dissected and gills screened using standard techniques. Following a comprehensive morphological study using light and scanning electron microscopy, additional morphological characters are reported. Furthermore, novel data on partial 18S, 28S (rRNA), and COI (mtDNA) gene regions are presented. This is the first integrative study on the morphology of E. mirabilis with supporting genetic data, as well as new distribution records from the KuShokwe Pan in the Phongolo River floodplain and the Vaal River in South Africa, and from the Barotse floodplain in Zambezi River, Zambia. An updated overview is provided for the species of Ergasilus from Africa, including hosts, distribution, and genetic information. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diversity, Taxonomy and Systematics of Fish Parasites)
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14 pages, 3557 KiB  
Article
Myxozoan Ceratomyxids Infecting the Gallbladder of Amazonian Ornamental Cichlid Fish: Description of Ellipsomyxa santarenensis n. sp. and Report of Ceratomyxa amazonensis in a New Host
by Rayline T. A. Figueredo, Maria I. Müller, Paul F. Long and Edson A. Adriano
Diversity 2023, 15(7), 830; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15070830 - 1 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1081
Abstract
Although most Myxozoa species of the genera Ceratomyxa and Ellipsomyxa have been described in marine hosts worldwide, an increasing diversity has been reported infecting South American freshwater fish, mainly in Amazonian waters. The present study deals with two species of myxozoan ceratomyxids parasitizing [...] Read more.
Although most Myxozoa species of the genera Ceratomyxa and Ellipsomyxa have been described in marine hosts worldwide, an increasing diversity has been reported infecting South American freshwater fish, mainly in Amazonian waters. The present study deals with two species of myxozoan ceratomyxids parasitizing the gallbladder of Amazonian ornamental cichlids fish: Ceratomyxa amazonensis is identified from a new host—Geophagus altifrons; while Ellipsomyxa santarenensis n. sp. is described infecting Satanoperca jurupari. Morphological (light microscopy and transmission electron microscopy), molecular (small ribosomal subunit DNA—SSU-rDNA sequencing) and phylogenetic analyses were used to characterize both species. Ceratomyxa amazonensis showed a prevalence of 64.2%, with plasmodia showing a vermiform shape and motility. For E. santarenensis n. sp., the prevalence was 33.3%. Ultrastructural analysis revealed that the vermiform C. amazonensis plasmodia were composed of an outer cytoplasmic region and a large vacuole occupying the inner area. In E. santarenensis n. sp., cytoplasmic expansions were observed in pseudoplasmodia originating pseudopodia. SSU rDNA sequencing-based genetic distance analysis revealed a very small difference between C. amazonensis, parasite of G. altifrons, and C. amazonensis, parasite of S. discus—host of the original description, thus showing that they are the same species occurring in a new host. For Ellipsomyxa santarenensis n. sp., molecular data revealed a difference of 1.6% for Ellipsomyxa amazonensis and Ellipsomyxa paraensis. The phylogenetic analysis revealed the grouping of E. santarenensis n. sp. together with the other freshwater Ellipsomyxa species of the Amazonian region, and associated with the morphological data, it was possible to identify it as a new taxon within the genus Ellipsomyxa. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diversity, Taxonomy and Systematics of Fish Parasites)
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12 pages, 4336 KiB  
Article
Morphological and Molecular Characterization of Anisakid Nematode Larvae (Nematoda: Anisakidae) in the Black Cusk eel Genypterus maculatus from the Southeastern Pacific Ocean off Peru
by Jhon Darly Chero, Luis Ñacari, Celso Luis Cruces, David Fermín Lopez, Edson Cacique, Ruperto Severino, Jorge Lopez, José Luis Luque and Gloria Saéz
Diversity 2023, 15(7), 820; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15070820 - 29 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1475
Abstract
The back cusk eel, Genypterus maculatus (Tschudi, 1846), (Ophiidiformes: Ophiididae) is one of the benthic-demersal fish usually consumed in northern Peru. Here, we identified the third stage (L3) Anisakidae sampled from 29 specimens of G. maculatus captured off the south American Pacific [...] Read more.
The back cusk eel, Genypterus maculatus (Tschudi, 1846), (Ophiidiformes: Ophiididae) is one of the benthic-demersal fish usually consumed in northern Peru. Here, we identified the third stage (L3) Anisakidae sampled from 29 specimens of G. maculatus captured off the south American Pacific coast, Lambayeque Region, Peru. A total of 20 anisakid nematode larvae were collected on the visceral surface and divided morphologically into three types (Type I–III). These larvae were identified by mtDNA Cox2 sequences analysis, which indicated that corresponded to Anisakis pegreffii Campana-Rouget and Biocca, 1955, Skrjabinisakis physeteris (Baylis, 1923) and S. brevispiculata (Dollfus, 1966) Safonova, Voronova, and Vainutis, 2021, respectively. This is the first record of S. brevispiculata in Peru. The results obtained in this study provide knowledge on the diversity and distribution of Anisakis Dujardin, 1845 and Skrjabinisakis Mozgovoi, 1951, species in the south American Pacific waters and their relevance for public health. In addition, we suggest that combined use of molecular and morphological approaches is needed to characterize L3 anisakid larvae. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diversity, Taxonomy and Systematics of Fish Parasites)
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11 pages, 5282 KiB  
Article
Henneguya correai n. sp. (Cnidaria, Myxozoa) Parasitizing the Fins of the Amazonian Fish Semaprochilodus insignis
by Maria I. Müller, Rayline T. A. Figueredo, Stephen D. Atkinson, Jerri L. Bartholomew and Edson A. Adriano
Diversity 2023, 15(6), 702; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15060702 - 24 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1391
Abstract
We used a combination of morphological, molecular and biological data to characterize a novel Henneguya (Myxozoa) species infecting the Amazonian prochilodontid Semaprochilodus insignis or “kissing prochilodus”, a popular food fish and aquarium species in the Brazilian Amazon. Twenty-one S. insignis were caught live from [...] Read more.
We used a combination of morphological, molecular and biological data to characterize a novel Henneguya (Myxozoa) species infecting the Amazonian prochilodontid Semaprochilodus insignis or “kissing prochilodus”, a popular food fish and aquarium species in the Brazilian Amazon. Twenty-one S. insignis were caught live from the Tapajós river, Pará State, Brazil, then examined for myxozoan infections. Cysts of a novel Henneguya species were observed in the connective tissue of the fins. Myxospores measured 48 ± 4.9 (39.5–60.8) µm total length, of which caudal appendages were 33 ± 4.5 (26.4–45.2) µm and spore body was 15 ± 1.6 (12.4–20.5) µm. The spore body was 4.0 ± 0.6 (2.7–5.3) µm wide × 3.2 ± 0.4 (2.7–3.6) µm thick, with two unequal polar capsules (nematocysts) 7.2 ±0.8 (5.2–8.3) × 1.5 ± 0.3 (1.0–2.2) µm for the larger capsule and 5 ± 0.7 (4.0–6.3) × 1.4 ± 0.2 (1.0–1.8) µm for the smaller capsule. Polar tubules had 8–13 turns. Generative cells, immature and mature myxospores were observed within plasmodia. Ultrastructure showed plasmodia surrounded by collagen fibers, with the plasmodial membrane having pinocytotic channels. Phylogenetic analysis of small subunit ribosomal DNA sequences showed that the new Henneguya species clustered as a sister taxon to Henneguya tietensis, a parasite of the gills of the prochilodontid fish Prochilodus lineatus, from the geographically distant Paraná–Paraguai River basin. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diversity, Taxonomy and Systematics of Fish Parasites)
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19 pages, 8239 KiB  
Article
Three New Species of Jainus (Monogenea: Dactylogyridae) Parasitizing Gills of Brazilian Freshwater Fishes Supported by Morphological and Molecular Data
by Priscilla de Oliveira Fadel Yamada, Maria Isabel Müller, Aline Cristina Zago, Fabio Hideki Yamada, Mariana Bertholdi Ebert, Lidiane Franceschini and Reinaldo José da Silva
Diversity 2023, 15(5), 667; https://doi.org/10.3390/d15050667 - 14 May 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1360
Abstract
The present study describes three new species of monogeneans parasitizing the gills of anostomid fishes from the Upper Paraná River basin, southeastern Brazil: Jainus beccus n. sp. and Jainus radixelongatus n. sp. on Leporinus friderici, Leporinus octofasciatus, Leporinus striatus, and [...] Read more.
The present study describes three new species of monogeneans parasitizing the gills of anostomid fishes from the Upper Paraná River basin, southeastern Brazil: Jainus beccus n. sp. and Jainus radixelongatus n. sp. on Leporinus friderici, Leporinus octofasciatus, Leporinus striatus, and Megaleporinus elongatus; and Jainus ornatus n. sp. on L. friderici. The new species differ from other congeners by the morphology of the accessory piece. There is a semicircular distal portion resembling a “bird’s beak” in Jainus beccus n. sp. It composed of two subunits—one ventral and more sclerotized, sickle-shaped, and another dorsal with three projections—in Jainus radixelongatus n. sp. There are two elongated and sclerotized subunits, both of which have a sickle-shaped distal portion, in Jainus ornatus n. sp. Supplementary observations not reported in the original descriptions of the type-species Jainus piava Karling, Bellay, Takemoto & Pavanelli, 2011 are proposed, as follows: the presence of a thin and delicate ventral bar, which can vary greatly in shape; an accessory piece not articulated with the MCO’s base. This paper provides the first phylogenetic study based on LSU rDNA and COI mtDNA gene sequences for Jainus, improving and clarifying the understanding of host–parasite relationships in neotropical characiforms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diversity, Taxonomy and Systematics of Fish Parasites)
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