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Diseases of Aquatic Organisms

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DAO 70:237-241 (2006)  -  doi:10.3354/dao070237

Extra-intestinal localization of Goussia sp. (Apicomplexa) oocysts in Rana dalmatina (Anura: Ranidae), and the fate of infection after metamorphosis

M. Jirku1,*, D. Modrý1,2

1Department of Parasitology, University of Veterinary & Pharmaceutical Sciences, Palackého 1–3, Brno, Czech Republic
2Institute of Parasitology of Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Braniovská 31, Ceské Budejovice, Czech Republic

ABSTRACT: Although coccidia of the genus Goussia are common parasites of fish, only 2 species have been described in amphibians: G. hyperolisi from common reed frogs Hyperolius viridiflavus from Kenya and G. neglecta from unspecified European water frogs of the genus Rana from Germany. The genus Goussia is characterized by an oocyst, with a fine oocyst wall, containing 4 dizoic sporocysts that are composed of 2 valves joined by a longitudinal suture and lacking a Stieda body (typical for the genus Eimeria). To date, infections in amphibians were generally considered to be specific to the intestine of aquatic larval stages (tadpoles) of anurans. Herein, we report on: (1) the presence of oocysts of Goussia sp. in an extra-intestinal location (liver) of tadpoles of the agile frog R. dalmatina and (2) the presence of oocysts in the liver of both juvenile and subadult R. dalmatina. These observations represent novel traits for Goussia infections in amphibians; they may explain the vertical transmission of Goussia in tadpoles.

KEY WORDS: Apicomplexa · Goussia · Extra-intestinal localization · Anura · Rana dalmatina

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