Main content area

Morphological and phylogenetic analysis of Lutzomyia migonei from three Brazilian states

Costa, Pietra Lemos, Brazil, Reginaldo Peçanha, Fuzari, Andressa Alencastre, Latrofa, Maria Stefania, Annoscia, Giada, Tarallo, Viviana Domenica, Capelli, Gioia, Otranto, Domenico, Brandão-Filho, Sinval Pinto, Dantas-Torres, Filipe
Acta tropica 2018
Leishmania braziliensis, Leishmania infantum, Lutzomyia, cutaneous leishmaniasis, cytochrome-c oxidase, discriminant analysis, females, males, monophyly, morphometry, nucleotide sequences, vector competence, visceral leishmaniasis, Brazil
Lutzomyia migonei is incriminated as a vector of Leishmania braziliensis, the main causative agent of cutaneous leishmaniasis in Brazil. Recently, this phlebotomine sand fly species has been suggested as a vector for Leishmania infantum, which causes zoonotic visceral leishmaniasis. Considering the widespread distribution of Lu. migonei in South America, the existence of isolated populations has been hypothesized. Three Lu. migonei populations, two from north-eastern Brazil (Machados, Pernambuco State, and Baturité, Ceará State) and other from the south-eastern region (Niterói, Rio de Janeiro State) were analysed both morphologically and genetically. Though no significant morphological differences were found amongst the sand fly specimens analysed, discriminant analysis based on specific morphometric characters (i.e., length of wing, antennal segment 3 and coxite for males, and length of wing and antennal segment 3 for females), showed that specimens from Machados were closer to Baturité than to Niterói. The molecular analysis of cytochrome c oxidase subunit I gene sequences also supported this observation by the distinct separation of two monophyletic clades, grouping specimens from Machados and Baturité separately from those of Niterói. Our results suggest the existence of different populations within the distribution range of Lu. migonei. Whether these populations are reproductively isolated and/or present differences in terms of vector competence/capacity for L. braziliensis and L. infantum needs to be further investigated.