Molecular, Morphological, and Spatial Study of Galba schirazensis (Pulmonata, Lymnaeidae) from Southeastern Iran
Background: Snails of the genus Galba are the intermediate hosts of Fasciola species, the etiological agents of liver fluke disease, fascioliasis. A genetically different but morphologically very similar species in the genus, G. schirazensis, is sympatrically distributed with G. truncatula in some regions of the world. We aimed to investigate the occurrence of G. schirazensis in Kerman province, Iran and to characterize genetically G. schirazensis specimens from southeast Iran.
Methods: Field-collected snails from four localities in Jiroft, Bam and Faryab, Kerman province, southeastern Iran were studied. Hydrological variables including temperature and pH were recorded for each habitat. Each specimen was identified using morphological as well as conchological characteristics. Genetic characterization was performed using PCR-sequencing followed by phylogenetic analyses on nuclear ITS2 as well as mitochondrial cox1 gene fragments. MaxEnt software was used to predict the most appropriate ecological niches for the targeted species.
Results: G. schirazensis was found in 4 out of 28 locations. One ITS2 and two cox1 haplotypes were detected among G. schirazensis populations from the four localities. Habitat study showed that G. schirazensis thrives in habitats with alkaline pH. G.schirazensis from South America were clustered with specimens from Bam, Kerman, Iran; however, north Iranian isolates of G. schirazensis were strongly correlated with specimens from Jiroft and Faryab. MaxEnt model for the most appropriate ecological niches of the targeted species predicted environmental suitability for this species in western Africa as well as coastal areas in north and southwestern Africa.
Conclusion: G. schirazensis is frequently present in southern areas of Kerman Province. At least two genetically different haplotypes are present in southeastern Iran.
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|Issue||Vol 16 No 1 (2021)|
|Galba schirazensis Modeling Phylogenetic study Geographic infor-mation system Iran|
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