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J. Parasitol., 95(2), 2009, pp. 424433 American Society of Parasitologists 2009
 

Summary: 424
J. Parasitol., 95(2), 2009, pp. 424433
American Society of Parasitologists 2009
FOUR NEW SPECIES OF PLASMODIUM FROM NEW GUINEA LIZARDS:
INTEGRATING MORPHOLOGY AND MOLECULES
Susan L. Perkins and Christopher C. Austin*
Sackler Institute for Comparative Genomics & Division of Invertebrate Zoology, American Museum of Natural History, Central Park West at
79th St., New York, New York 10024. e-mail: perkins@amnh.org
ABSTRACT: New Guinea is one of the most biodiverse regions of the world, particularly in terms of the herpetofauna present,
yet surprisingly little is known about the parasites that infect these organisms. A survey of diverse scinid and agamid lizard hosts
from this country showed a diversity of malaria parasites infecting these hosts. We combined morphological and morphometric
observations of the parasites (primarily gametocytes) along with DNA sequence data from the mitochondrial cytochrome b and
cytochrome oxidase I genes and here describe 4 new species of Plasmodium, i.e. Plasmodium minuoviride n. sp., Plasmodium
koreafense n. sp., Plasmodium megalotrypa n. sp., and Plasmodium gemini n. sp. A fifth species, Plasmodium lacertiliae Thomp-
son and Hart 1946, is redescribed based on new observations of hosts and localities and additional molecular data. This combined
morphological and molecular approach is advised for all future descriptions of new malaria parasite species, particularly in light
of situations where every life-history stage is not available.
Approximately 200 species of Plasmodium have been de-
scribed from mammal, avian, and squamate reptile intermediate
hosts. These species descriptions have relied on classical meth-

  

Source: Austin, Christopher C. - Museum of Natural Science, Louisiana State University

 

Collections: Environmental Sciences and Ecology