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Genetic structure analysis of Amblyomma mixtum populations in Veracruz State, Mexico

Aguilar-Domínguez, Mariel, Sánchez-Montes, Sokani, Esteve-Gassent, María Dolores, Barrientos-Salcedo, Carolina, Pérez de León, Adalberto, Romero-Salas, Dora
Ticks and tick-borne diseases 2019 v.10 no.1 pp. 86-92
Amblyomma, cytochrome-c oxidase, genetic variation, haplotypes, hosts, humans, intraspecific variation, livestock, mitochondrial genes, parasitism, population genetics, taxonomic keys, tick-borne diseases, ticks, wildlife, Mexico
Amblyomma mixtum Koch, 1844 parasitizes livestock, humans, and wildlife in Mexico. However, information on population genetics for this tick species in the country is missing. Tick samples were collected from livestock in ten regions across the state of Veracruz (22°28′N, 17°09′S, 93°36′E, 98°39′W) to analyze the genetic structure of A. mixtum populations. Ticks were morphologically identified using taxonomic keys. In order to test the intra-specific variability of A. mixtum fragments of the mitochondrial gene 16S-rRNA and cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI) were amplified. Ninety-six sequences were amplified from the 50 specimens’ analyzed (96% amplification success). Eleven haplotypes were detected in 16S-rRNA gene and 10 more for COI. Neutrality tests showed negative results in most of the locations analyzed, which is indicative of an excess of recently derived haplotypes. However, these results were not statistically significant. Minimal union network analysis revealed that there is no separation of populations by geography, and that there is an overlap of several haplotypes among diverse populations. Significant genetic differentiation was not detected in the A. mixtum populations sampled in the state of Veracruz, Mexico, this may be due to the frequent movement of livestock hosts. This is the first report on the genetic structure of A. mixtum populations in Mexico.