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Genetic characterization, species differentiation and detection of Fasciola spp. by molecular approaches

Ai, Lin, Chen, Mu-Xin, Alasaad, Samer, Elsheikha, Hany M, Li, Juan, Li, Hai-Long, Lin, Rui-Qing, Zou, Feng-Cai, Zhu, Xing-Quan, Chen, Jia-Xu
Parasites & vectors 2011 v.4 no.1 pp. 337
Fasciola, epidemiology, etiology, evolution, foodborne illness, genetic variation, genotyping, liver flukes, livestock and meat industry, new methods, parasitoses, public health
Liver flukes belonging to the genus Fasciola are among the causes of foodborne diseases of parasitic etiology. These parasites cause significant public health problems and substantial economic losses to the livestock industry. Therefore, it is important to definitively characterize the Fasciola species. Current phenotypic techniques fail to reflect the full extent of the diversity of Fasciola spp. In this respect, the use of molecular techniques to identify and differentiate Fasciola spp. offer considerable advantages. The advent of a variety of molecular genetic techniques also provides a powerful method to elucidate many aspects of Fasciola biology, epidemiology, and genetics. However, the discriminatory power of these molecular methods varies, as does the speed and ease of performance and cost. There is a need for the development of new methods to identify the mechanisms underpinning the origin and maintenance of genetic variation within and among Fasciola populations. The increasing application of the current and new methods will yield a much improved understanding of Fasciola epidemiology and evolution as well as more effective means of parasite control. Herein, we provide an overview of the molecular techniques that are being used for the genetic characterization, detection and genotyping of Fasciola spp..