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Analysis of Amblyomma sculptum haplotypes in an area endemic for Brazilian spotted fever
- BITENCOURTH, K., VOLOCH, C. M., SERRA‐FREIRE, N. M., MACHADO‐FERREIRA, E., AMORIM, M., GAZÊTA, G. S.
- Medical and veterinary entomology 2016 v.30 no.3 pp. 342-350
- Amblyomma cajennense, cytochrome-c oxidase, fever, gene flow, genes, genetic variation, haplotypes, mitochondria, phylogeny, population structure, ribosomal DNA, ticks, vector competence, Argentina, Brazil
- Amblyomma sculptum (Ixodida: Ixodidae) Berlese, 1888, a member of the Amblyomma cajennense complex, is the major vector of Brazilian spotted fever (BSF) in southeastern Brazil. In this study, the genetic diversity of A. sculptum populations in the state of Rio de Janeiro (RJ), Brazil, was investigated because genetic variability in tick populations may be related to vector competence. Samples of A. sculptum from 19 municipalities in 7 regions of RJ were subjected to DNA extraction, amplification and sequencing of D‐loop, cytochrome oxidase II and 12S rDNA mitochondrial genes. These sequences were used to map the genetic diversity of this tick. Amblyomma sculptum populations are genetically diverse in RJ, especially in the South Centre and Highland regions. Few unique haplotypes were observed in all populations, and the majority of genetic variation found was among ticks within each population. Phylogenetic reconstruction reinforced the assumption that all the haplotypes identified in RJ belong to A. sculptum. However, some RJ haplotypes are closer to A. sculptum from Argentina than to A. sculptum from elsewhere in Brazil. In RJ, A. sculptum has high genetic diversity, although little genetic differentiation. Observations also indicated a high level of gene flow among the studied populations and no evidence of population structure according to region in RJ.