Systematic Parasitology

, Volume 91, Issue 3, pp 273–279 | Cite as

Sarcocystis clethrionomyelaphis Matuschka, 1986 (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) infecting the large oriental vole Eothenomys miletus (Thomas) (Cricetidae: Microtinae) and its phylogenetic relationships with other species of Sarcocystis Lankester, 1882

  • Jun-Jie HuEmail author
  • Ting-Ting Liu
  • Qiong Liu
  • G. W. Esch
  • Jin-Qing Chen


Sarcocystis clethrionomyelaphis Matuschka, 1986 was first identified in skeletal muscles of 47 (75.8%) of 62 large oriental voles Eothenomys miletus (Thomas) captured between March 2012 and May 2014 in Anning Prefecture of Yunnan Province (China). Sarcocyst walls were thick and possessed villous protrusions measuring 3.5–5.5 μm in length. Beauty rat snakes Elaphe taeniura (Cope) fed sarcocysts of the species shed sporulated oöcysts measuring 13–18 × 9–13 (16 × 12) μm with a prepatent period of 16 to 17 days. Phylogenetic analysis based on 18S rRNA gene sequences revealed a close relationship between S. clethrionomyelaphis and other colubrid-transmitted species of Sarcocystis Lankester, 1882. This is the first report identifying S. clethrionomyelaphis from its natural intermediate host.


Intermediate Host Definitive Host Sarcocystis Species Sporocyst Residuum Sarcocyst Wall 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This study was funded by the Natural Sciences Foundation of China (Grant 31460557) and the Foundation for Science of School of Life Sciences Yunnan University (Grant 2013S206).

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Compliance with ethical standards

All applicable institutional, national and international guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed. The study was approved by the Animal Ethics Committee of Yunnan University (Grant YNUAEC2013012).


  1. Dolezel, D., Koudela, B., Jirků, M., Hypsa, V., Obornik, M., Votýpka, J., et al. (1999). Phylogenetic analysis of Sarcocystis spp. of mammals and reptiles supports the coevolution of Sarcocystis spp. with their final host. International Journal for Parasitology, 29, 795–798.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Dubey, J. P., Speer, C. A., & Fayer, R. (1989). Sarcocystosis of animals and man (pp. 30–44). Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press.Google Scholar
  3. Fischer, S., & Odening, K. (1998). Characterization of bovine Sarcocystis species by analysis of their 18S ribosomal DNA sequences. Journal of Parasitology, 84, 50–54.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Häfner, U., & Frank, W. (1984). Host specificity and host range of the genus Sarcocystis in three snake-rodent life cycles. Zentralblatt für Bakteriologie, Mikrobiologie und Hygiene. Series A: Medical Microbiology, Infectious Diseases, Virology, Parasitology, 256, 296–299.Google Scholar
  5. Hall, T. A. (1999). BioEdit: a user-friendly biological sequence alignment editor and analysis program for Windows 95/98/NT. Nucleic Acids Symposium Series, 41, 95–98.Google Scholar
  6. Holmadahl, O. J., Morrison, D. A., Ellis, J. T., & Huong, L. T. (1999). Evolution of ruminant Sarcocystis (Sporozoa) parasites based on small subunit rDNA sequences. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 11, 27–37.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Hu, J. J., Ma, T. C., & Li, X. R. (2005). A new species of sarcocysts (Sporozoa, Eucoccoddoda) from Rattus norvegicus. Acta Zootaxonomica Sinica, 30, 287–290.Google Scholar
  8. Hu, J. J., Meng, Y., Guo, Y. M., Liao, J. Y., & Song, J. L. (2012). Completion of the life cycle of Sarcocystis zuoi, a parasite from the Norway rat, Rattus norvegicus. Journal of Parasitology, 98, 550–553.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Hu, J. J., Liu, Q., Yang, Y. F., Esch, G. W., Guo, Y. M., & Zou, F. C. (2014). Sarcocystis eothenomysi n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Sarcocystidae) from the large oriental vole Eothenomys miletus (Thomas) (Cricetidae: Microtinae) from Anning. China. Systematic Parasitology, 89, 73–81.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Luo, J., Yang, D., Suzuki, H., Wang, Y., Chen, W. J., Campbell, K. L., & Zhang, Y. P. (2004). Molecular phylogeny and biogeography of oriental voles: Genus Eothenomys (Muridae, Mammalia). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 33, 349–362.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Luo, Z. X., Chen, W., & Gao, W. (2000). Fauna Sinica, Mammalia. Volume 6, Rodentia, Cricetidae. Beijing: Science Press, 522 pp.Google Scholar
  12. Matuschka, F. R. (1986). Sarcocystis clethrionomyelaphis n. sp. from snakes of the genus Elaphe and different voles of the family Arvicolidae. Journal of Parasitology, 72, 226–231.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Matuschka, F. R. (1987). Reptiles as intermediate and/or final hosts of Sarcosporidia. Parasitology Research, 73, 22–32.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Medlin, L., Elwood, H. J., Stickel, S., & Sogin, M. L. (1988). The characterization of enzymatically eukaryotic 16S-like rRNA-coding regions. Gene, 71, 491–499.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Mehlhorn, H., & Matuschka, F. R. (1986). Ultrastructural studies of the development of Sarcocystis clethrionomyelaphis within its final and intermediate hosts. Protistologica, 22, 97–104.Google Scholar
  16. Odening, K. (1998). The present state of species-systematics in Sarcocystis Lankester, 1882 (Protista, Sporozoa, Coccidia). Systematic Parasitology, 41, 209–233.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Posada, D., & Crandall, K. A. (1998). MODELTEST: testing the model of DNA substitution. Bioinformatics, 14, 817–818.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Ronquist, F., & Huelsenbeck, J. P. (2003). MrBayes 3: Bayesian phylogenetic inference under mixed models. Bioinformatics, 19, 1572–1574.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Šlapeta, J. R., Modrý, D., & Koudela, B. (1999). Sarcocystis atheridis sp. nov., a new sarcosporidian coccidium from Nitsche’s bush viper, Atheris nitschei Tornier, 1902, from Uganda. Parasitology Research, 85, 758–764.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Šlapeta, J. R., Modrý, D., Votýpka, J., Jirků, M., Lukes, J., & Koudela, B. (2003). Evolutionary relationships among cyst-forming coccidia Sarcocystis spp. (Alveolata: Apicomplexa: Coccidea) in endemic African tree vipers and perspective for evolution of heteroxenous life cycle. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 27, 464–475.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Zhao, E. M., Huang, M. H., & Zong, Y. (1998). Fauna Sinica, Reptilia, Volume 3, Squamata, Serpentes. Beijing: Sciences Press, pp. 169–173.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jun-Jie Hu
    • 1
    Email author
  • Ting-Ting Liu
    • 1
  • Qiong Liu
    • 1
  • G. W. Esch
    • 2
  • Jin-Qing Chen
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Biological SciencesYunnan UniversityKunmingChina
  2. 2.Department of BiologyWake Forest UniversityWinston-SalemUSA

Personalised recommendations