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Article

Host-Specific Parasites Reveal the History and Biogeographical Contacts of Their Hosts: The Monogenea of Nearctic Cyprinoid Fishes

1
Department of Botany and Zoology, Faculty of Science, Masaryk University, Kotlářská 2, 611 37 Brno, Czech Republic
2
Division of Natural Sciences, St. Norbert College, De Pere, WI 54115, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Oswaldo Palenzuela
Biology 2022, 11(2), 229; https://doi.org/10.3390/biology11020229
Received: 8 December 2021 / Revised: 18 January 2022 / Accepted: 25 January 2022 / Published: 31 January 2022
(This article belongs to the Section Evolutionary Biology)
Parasites exhibiting close associations with their hosts may represent a useful tool when investigating historical biogeography, especially in the case of hosts associated with a once contiguous landmass. Host-specific gill parasites (Monogenea) were applied as a supplementary tool to reveal the historical biogeographical contacts between freshwater fish from North America and Europe and their contemporary contacts in North America. Cyprinoidei is the most species-rich lineage of cypriniform fish with Leuciscidae exhibiting a Holarctic distribution. Monogenean parasites of the genus Dactylogyrus are mostly restricted to this freshwater fish group, and the high species diversity of Dactylogyrus follows the high diversity of their cyprinoid fish hosts. Using a phylogenetic approach, two Nearctic clades of Dactylogyrus spp. with different origins were revealed indicating two different historical routes of cyprinoid dispersion to the North American continent. Our study showed that the historical contacts between European and North American leuciscids were accompanied by the host switching of gill monogeneans. The phylogenetic relationships among North American Dactylogyrus spp. indicated numerous colonizations of cypriniform fish resulting from ancient paleogeographic events and contemporary drainage reorganization, thereby, facilitating contacts among phylogenetically distant fish species.
Host-specific parasites exhibit close co-evolutionary associations with their hosts. In the case of fragmented/disjunct host distribution, host-specific parasites may reflect the biogeographical history of regions and/or the role played by contacts of hosts. The present study was focused on Dactylogyrus (Monogenea) species almost exclusively parasitizing cyprinoid fishes. We investigated the phylogenetic relationships between Dactylogyrus parasites of Nearctic cyprinoids (Leuciscidae) and Dactylogyrus parasites of Palearctic cyprinoids and used Dactylogyrus phylogeny to explore the biogeography of fish hosts in Europe and North America. Phylogenetic analyses revealed that two Nearctic clades of Dactylogyrus spp. have different origins. Historical contacts between European and North American leuciscids were accompanied by the host switching of Dactylogyrus species. In the Nearctic region, Dactylogyrus parasites also colonized non-leuciscid fishes. Dactylogyrus spp. of three Nearctic leuciscid clades were included in the phylogenetic reconstruction; only Dactylogyrus spp. of the Plagopterinae had a common origin. Dactylogyrus species did not reflect the phylogenetic relationships among leuciscid clades, suggesting that past co-diversification was overshadowed by colonization events mediated by paleogeographic and climatological changes and extensive drainage reorganization. Host-specific monogeneans serve as a supplementary tool to reveal the historical biogeographical contacts between freshwater fish from the North America and Europe and also contemporary contacts of leuciscids in North America. View Full-Text
Keywords: host-parasite associations; host-specific parasites; monogenea; fish; cyproniforms; phylogeny; biogeography; Nearctic area host-parasite associations; host-specific parasites; monogenea; fish; cyproniforms; phylogeny; biogeography; Nearctic area
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MDPI and ACS Style

Šimková, A.; Řehulková, E.; Choudhury, A.; Seifertová, M. Host-Specific Parasites Reveal the History and Biogeographical Contacts of Their Hosts: The Monogenea of Nearctic Cyprinoid Fishes. Biology 2022, 11, 229. https://doi.org/10.3390/biology11020229

AMA Style

Šimková A, Řehulková E, Choudhury A, Seifertová M. Host-Specific Parasites Reveal the History and Biogeographical Contacts of Their Hosts: The Monogenea of Nearctic Cyprinoid Fishes. Biology. 2022; 11(2):229. https://doi.org/10.3390/biology11020229

Chicago/Turabian Style

Šimková, Andrea, Eva Řehulková, Anindo Choudhury, and Mária Seifertová. 2022. "Host-Specific Parasites Reveal the History and Biogeographical Contacts of Their Hosts: The Monogenea of Nearctic Cyprinoid Fishes" Biology 11, no. 2: 229. https://doi.org/10.3390/biology11020229

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