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North America

NOT Open Access | A highly invasive malaria parasite has expanded its range to non-migratory birds in North America

September 8, 2021 - 17:19 -- NOT Open Access
Author(s): 
Theodosopoulos AN, Grabenstein KC, Bensch S, Taylor SA
Reference: 
Biol Lett. 2021 Sep;17(9):20210271

Parasite range expansions are a direct consequence of globalization and are an increasing threat to biodiversity. Here, we report a recent range expansion of the SGS1 strain of a highly invasive parasite, Plasmodium relictum, to two non-migratory passerines in North America. Plasmodium relictum is considered one of the world's most invasive parasites and causes the disease avian malaria: this is the first reported case of SGS1 in wild non-migratory birds on the continent.

NOT Open Access | Rediscovery of Plasmodium (Huffia) huffi (Apicomplexa, Haemosporida): a lost lineage from toucans

August 10, 2021 - 18:39 -- NOT Open Access
Author(s): 
Cedrola F, Martinele I, Senra MVX, Furtado EJO, D Agosto M, Dias RJP
Reference: 
Parasitol Res. 2021 Aug 10

Literature data on toucans haemosporidians are scarce and all reports come from investigations in Brazil. Muniz et al. (Rev Bras Malariol 3: 339-356, Muniz et al., Rev Bras Malariol 3:339-356, 1951) and Muniz and Soares (Rev Bras Malar 611-617, Muniz J, Soares R de RL (1954) Nota sôbre um parasita do gênero Plasmodium encontrado no Ramphastos toco Müller, 1776, "Tucano-Açu", e diferente do Plasmodium huffi: Plasmodium pinottii n. sp. Rev Bras Malar 611 - 617.) described two Plasmodium species, P. huffi and P. pinottii, in Ramphastos toco. Later, Manwell and Sessler (J Protozol 18: 570-574, Manwell and Sessler, Malaria Parasites of Toucans J Protozol 18:570-574, 1971) established a new subspecies, P. nucleophilum toucani.

The new Internal Transcribed Spacer 2 diagnostic tool clarifies the taxonomic position and geographic distribution of the North American malaria vector Anopheles punctipennis

March 10, 2021 - 15:21 -- Open Access
Author(s): 
James M. Hodge, Andrey A. Yurchenko, Dmitriy A. Karagodin, Reem A. Masri, Ryan C. Smith, Mikhail I. Gordeev and Maria V. Sharakhova
Reference: 
Malaria Journal 2021 20:141, 10 March 2021

The malaria mosquito Anopheles punctipennis, a widely distributed species in North America, is capable of transmitting human malaria and is actively involved in the transmission of the ungulate malaria parasite Plasmodium odocoilei. However, molecular diagnostic tools based on Internal Transcribed Spacer 2 (ITS2) of ribosomal DNA are lacking for this species. Anopheles punctipennis is a former member of the Anopheles maculipennis complex but its systematic position remains unclear.

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