Using mitochondrial and nuclear markers to evaluate the degree of genetic cohesion among Echinococcus populations.

Badaraco, J L; Ayala, F J; Bart, J-M; Gottstein, Bruno; Haag, K L (2008). Using mitochondrial and nuclear markers to evaluate the degree of genetic cohesion among Echinococcus populations. Experimental parasitology, 119(4), pp. 453-459. Elsevier 10.1016/j.exppara.2008.02.004

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Based on the distinctiveness of their mitochondrial haplotypes and other biological features, several recent publications have proposed that some Echinococcus granulosus strains should be regarded as separate species. However, the genetic cohesion of these species has not been extensively evaluated using nuclear markers. We assess the degree of polymorphism of the partial mitochondrial cox1 (366bp), the nuclear mdh (214bp) and EgAgB4 (281-283bp) genes of E. granulosus sensu lato isolates collected from areas where different strains occur sympatrically. Five distinct mitochondrial haplotypes were determined by direct sequencing (G1, G2, G5, G6 and G7). The mdh genotypes were first screened by SSCP: three alleles were identified (Md1-Md3), which were further confirmed by nucleotide sequencing. For EgAgB4, which was analysed by direct sequencing the PCR products, two groups of sequences were found: EgAgB4-1 and EgAgB4-2. No haplotype-specific mdh or EgAgB4 sequences occur. Nevertheless, alleles Md1 and Md2 and type 1 sequences of EgAgB4 showed a higher frequency within the group of haplotypes G1-G2, while allele Md3 and EgAgB4-2 are most frequent in the G5-G7 cluster. By AMOVA it is shown that 79% of the total genetic variability is found among haplotype groups. These findings are compatible with two not mutually exclusive evolutionary hypotheses: (a) that haplotypes share an ancestral polymorphism, or (b) that the reproductive isolation between parasites with distinct haplotypes is not complete, leading to gene introgression. The biologic and epidemiologic consequences of our findings are discussed.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Infectious Diseases and Pathobiology (DIP) > Institute of Parasitology

UniBE Contributor:

Gottstein, Bruno


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health
600 Technology > 630 Agriculture








Bruno Gottstein

Date Deposited:

23 Jul 2018 08:49

Last Modified:

24 Oct 2019 18:08

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:





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