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New methods for studying parasite infection in natural populations of reptiles

New methods for studying parasite infection in natural populations of reptiles

Maia JP, et al. 2014. A Comparison of Multiple Methods for Estimating Parasitemia of Hemogregarine Hemoparasites (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina) and Its Application for Studying Infection in Natural Populations. PLoS ONE 9(4): e95010. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0095010

22.04.2014

 

In this contribution, we describe a quantitative PCR assay for simultaneously detecting and quantifying Hepatozoon in reptiles, and compare such an approach with more traditional and routinely used multiple detection methods, namely microscopy and PCR-based approaches. Our qPCR assay greatly improves performance compared to other methods, and it can be easily cross-applied as a routine diagnosis to other reptile species and related haemoparasite species. As a proof of concept, we applied our qPCR assay to estimate infection patterns in two closely related and sympatric lizard species. Our results show the influence of host species and sex on parasite infection, in a body size dependent manner, and highlight the importance of correctly estimate infection rates in natural populations.

http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0095010

Ref. Article: Maia JP, Harris DJ, Carranza S, Gómez-Díaz E (2014) A Comparison of Multiple Methods for Estimating Parasitemia of Hemogregarine Hemoparasites (Apicomplexa: Adeleorina) and Its Application for Studying Infection in Natural Populations. PLoS ONE 9(4): e95010. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0095010

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