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Echinococcus multilocularis in Svalbard, Norway: Microsatellite genotyping to investigate the origin of a highly focal contamination


Knapp, J; Staebler, S; Bart, J M; Stien, A; Yoccoz, N G; Drögemüller, C; Gottstein, B; Deplazes, P (2012). Echinococcus multilocularis in Svalbard, Norway: Microsatellite genotyping to investigate the origin of a highly focal contamination. Infection, Genetics and Evolution, 12(6):1270-1274.

Abstract

Echinococcus multilocularis is a threatening cestode involved in the human alveolar echinococcosis. The parasite, mainly described in temperate regions of the Northern hemisphere was described for the first time in 1999 in the High Arctic Svalbard archipelago, Norway. The origin of this contamination could be due to an anthropogenic introduction from mainland Europe by domestic dogs or with the introduction of the sibling vole, perhaps from mainland Russia (St. Petersburg area), or with roaming Arctic foxes, known as the main definitive host of the parasite in Arctic regions. The genetic diversity of E. multilocularis in Svalbard was investigated here for the first time by genotyping using EmsB microsatellite and compared to other genotyped populations in the main worldwide endemic areas. We found low polymorphism amongst the 27 metacestode isolates from sibling voles trapped in the core of the distribution area of the vole on Svalbard. E. mutilocularis Arctic populations, using the Arctic fox as the definitive host, were genetically separated from European temperate populations that use the red fox, but closely related to St. Lawrence Island samples from Alaska. The result is inconsistent with the hypothesis of an anthropogenic introduction from mainland Europe, but can be seen as consistent with the hypothesis that Arctic foxes introduced E. multilocularis to Svalbard.

Echinococcus multilocularis is a threatening cestode involved in the human alveolar echinococcosis. The parasite, mainly described in temperate regions of the Northern hemisphere was described for the first time in 1999 in the High Arctic Svalbard archipelago, Norway. The origin of this contamination could be due to an anthropogenic introduction from mainland Europe by domestic dogs or with the introduction of the sibling vole, perhaps from mainland Russia (St. Petersburg area), or with roaming Arctic foxes, known as the main definitive host of the parasite in Arctic regions. The genetic diversity of E. multilocularis in Svalbard was investigated here for the first time by genotyping using EmsB microsatellite and compared to other genotyped populations in the main worldwide endemic areas. We found low polymorphism amongst the 27 metacestode isolates from sibling voles trapped in the core of the distribution area of the vole on Svalbard. E. mutilocularis Arctic populations, using the Arctic fox as the definitive host, were genetically separated from European temperate populations that use the red fox, but closely related to St. Lawrence Island samples from Alaska. The result is inconsistent with the hypothesis of an anthropogenic introduction from mainland Europe, but can be seen as consistent with the hypothesis that Arctic foxes introduced E. multilocularis to Svalbard.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:05 Vetsuisse Faculty > Institute of Parasitology
04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Parasitology
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
610 Medicine & health
600 Technology
Language:English
Date:2012
Deposited On:19 Feb 2013 09:09
Last Modified:10 Nov 2016 14:13
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:1567-1348
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meegid.2012.03.008
Permanent URL: https://doi.org/10.5167/uzh-73159

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