ANISAKID PARASITES OF FISHES CAUGHT ON THE AFRICAN SHELF

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Abstract

Anisakids of Scomber japonicus, Trachyrincus scabrus, Sardina pilchardus, Merluccius polli, Trachurus trachurus, and Hoplostethus cadenati from African shelf are reported. Parasites were extensively studied with respect to their morphology and sequence analysis of the rDNA fragment (containing internal transcribed spacer [ITS]-1, 5.8S subunit and ITS-2); all of them are approximately 1,000 base pairs. Digestion of the amplified region and its sequencing revealed the presence of a sibling species (A. simplex s.s. and A. pegreffii). Still other sequences represented closely related, but not sibling, species, i.e., Anisakis brevispiculata, A. ziphidarum, and A. physeteris; there were also 2 undescribed anisakid species. These species were temporarily described as Anisakis sp. HC-2005 and Anisakis sp. MP-2005 (found, respectively, in Hoplostethus cadenati and Merluccius polli). The study shows that the parasitic fauna of fishes reflects not only the geographic range of anisakid nematodes but also the feeding behavior of the hosts serving as links in the parasites' life cycles.

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