Redescription and molecular characterisation of Allogastrocotyle bivaginalis Nasir & Fuentes Zambrano, 1983 (Monogenea: Gastrocotylidae) from Trachurus picturatus (Bowdich) (Perciformes: Carangidae) off the Algerian coast, Mediterranean Sea.
Syst Parasitol. 2019 Oct 01;:
Authors: Bouguerche C, Tazerouti F, Gey D, Justine JL
Allogastrocotyle bivaginalis Nasir & Fuentes Zambrano, 1983, the sole species of Allogastrocotyle Nasir & Fuentes Zambrano, 1983, was described from Trachurus lathami Nichols off Venezuela and never recorded since. We found monogeneans on Trachurus picturatus (Bowdich) (Carangidae) off the Algerian coast, Mediterranean Sea, which had the characteristics of the genus, including, especially, paired vaginae. We compared them to the single available specimen of A. bivaginalis, the holotype. Unfortunately, this holotype does not show clamp structure and soft internal anatomy. Our specimens were similar to A. bivaginalis in most characteristics such as body shape, vaginal openings, and number of testes, clamps and hooks in genital atrium. We detected minor differences in clamp structure but could not ascertain if these were the result of incomplete observations in the original description of real morphological differences. The host fish of our specimens were barcoded (cox1) confirming their specific identity. A phylogenetic analysis of cox1 sequences showed that our sequences of A. bivaginalis were distinct from those of Pseudaxine trachuri Parona & Perugia, 1889 (distance > 15%) and of several other gastrocotylids. Finally, we could not distinguish our Mediterranean specimens from A. bivaginalis, neither on the base of morphology (because the original description is incomplete) nor on molecules (because molecular information is lacking on A. bivaginalis from Venezuela) and ascribe them to A. bivaginalis. However, hosts are different, and localities are widely separated, so it is likely that future study will show that the species from the Mediterranean is a distinct, new, species.