alexa Species identification of Ixodes granulatus (Acari: Ixodidae) based on internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2) sequences.
Genetics & Molecular Biology

Genetics & Molecular Biology

Hereditary Genetics: Current Research

Author(s): Chao LL, Wu WJ, Shih CM

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Abstract To investigate the genetic specificity of Ixodes granulatus ticks collected from Taiwan, the genetic identities and phylogenetic relationships were analyzed by comparing the sequences of the internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2) region obtained from 27 strains of ticks representing twelve species of Ixodes. Five major clades can be easily distinguished by neighbour-joining analysis and were congruent by maximum-parsimony method. All these I. granulatus ticks collected from Taiwan and Japan were genetically affiliated to a monophyletic group with highly homogeneous sequences (95.8-99.5\% similarity), and can be discriminated from other species and subgenera of Ixodes ticks with a sequence divergence ranging from 13.6\% to 62.9\%. Moreover, interspecific analysis revealed that four distinct lineages are evident between Ixodes ticks, and all these I. granulatus ticks collected from Taiwan and Japan belong to the same lineage. Our results provide the first investigation on the genetic specificity of I. granulatus ticks, and demonstrate that all these I. granulatus ticks represent a unique lineage distinct from other species and subgenera of Ixodes ticks. The feasibility of ITS2-based genetic analysis for species-specific identification of I. granulatus ticks around East Asia was highly anticipated. This article was published in Exp Appl Acarol and referenced in Hereditary Genetics: Current Research

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