DNA barcoding of the medically important freshwater snail Physa acuta reveals multiple invasion events into Africa

Scott P Lawton*, Fiona Allan, Polly M Hayes, Nico J Smit

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The medically important freshwater snail Physa acuta is highly invasive and has been reported in several freshwater environments across Africa. To identify species and provide initial insights into the origins of P. acuta into African freshwater environments standard molecular barcoding analyses, using the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I gene (COI), was performed on P. acuta isolates from Angola, Burundi and South Africa. Phylogenetic analyses of isolates from Africa could not be distinguished from P. acuta populations from other countries. Comparisons of COI sequences between isolates of P. acuta showed there to be no geographically specific clusters and the African isolates were distributed across four distinct unrelated clades suggesting several independent invasion events. Haplotype analyses indicated that there were a high number of haplotypes with low variation between them, which led to significant differences in AMOVA analyses between countries. This was further evidence of multiple invasion events suggesting multiple novel haplotypes being continually and independently introduced to each country. This approach not only provides initial insight into the invasion of Africa by P. acuta but a molecular method to monitor and manage the use of an agent of biological control.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)86-92
Number of pages7
JournalActa Tropica
Volume188
Early online date27 Aug 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPrint publication - Dec 2018
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Animals
  • DNA Barcoding, Taxonomic
  • Fresh Water
  • Haplotypes
  • Phylogeny
  • Snails/genetics
  • South Africa

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