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A new species of Wellcomia (Nematoda: Oxyuridae) in the plains viscacha (Rodentia: Chinchillidae) from Argentina, an emended diagnosis and an update of the genus Wellcomia

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Abstract

Wellcomia species (Oxyuridae, Syphaciinae) parasitise several families of rodents from Africa, Asia and America with diverse ecological characteristics. A new species of Wellcomia is described based on specimens obtained from the plains viscacha Lagostomus maximus (Chinchillidae) from Argentina. The description includes morphometric and ecological aspects and an emended diagnosis of the genus Wellcomia. In addition, a molecular characterisation (18S rRNA) and an exploratory analysis of the genetic distances of the species included in this genus are provided. The new species, Wellcomia hugoti n. sp., differs from other species of the genus in the morphology of the cephalic plate, the ventral rugose area in males and the vulva in females. The new species showed a low prevalence (7.7%) and a high mean abundance (73.8). The genetic distances detected do not allow a comprehensive assessment of the monophyly of the genus. This is the seventh record of this genus in rodents from the Americas, the second in rodents from Argentina and the first record for the family Chinchillidae.

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Acknowledgements

We thank Graciela Navone, Guillermo Panisse, Andrea Servián, Lucas Garbin, Cecilia Morgan and Pilar Martinez for their support in the laboratory, field, molecular analyses and revision of the English version of the manuscript (respectively). The authors would also like to thank Walter Ferrari for his help with molecular studies and Patricia Sarmiento for the SEM photographs from the Museo de La Plata. We are as well grateful to Alberto Ortiz Basualdo for his hospitality at the Estancia Palmira de Carpinchorí and Pablo Teta and Sergio Lucero for providing us with materials from the Mammal Collection of the Museo Argentino de Ciencias Naturales Bernardino Rivadavia. Finally, we thank Claudio Ledesma of the Dirección de Minería, Medio ambiente y Recursos Naturales from the province of Entre Ríos and Mónica Rodríguez of the Dirección de Flora y Fauna from the province of Buenos Aires for granting us the necessary permits to collect and transport the study material.

Funding

This work was based on the research supported by the Agencia Nacional de Promoción Científica y Tecnológica (PICT 2015-1348), Proyecto de Unidades Ejecutoras (PUE), and Proyecto de incentivos de la Universidad Nacional de La Plata (UNLP N 627).

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Correspondence to María del Rosario Robles.

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Animal ethics

The research was conducted according to Argentine laws. Sample collection was carried out during fieldwork under official permission granted by the Dirección de Minería, Medio ambiente y Recursos Naturales, province of Entre Ríos, and the Dirección de Flora y Fauna, province of Buenos Aires and in accordance with the recommendations of the Guidelines for the capture, handling and care of mammals as approved by the American Society of Mammalogists (Animal Care and Use Committee 1998). No endangered species were involved (in this study).

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Canova, V., del Rosario Robles, M. & Abba, A.M. A new species of Wellcomia (Nematoda: Oxyuridae) in the plains viscacha (Rodentia: Chinchillidae) from Argentina, an emended diagnosis and an update of the genus Wellcomia. Parasitol Res 120, 929–940 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00436-020-06980-1

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