Molecular and morphological characterization of the tapeworm Taenia hydatigena (Pallas, 1766) in sheep from Iran

J Helminthol. 2015 Mar;89(2):150-7. doi: 10.1017/S0022149X13000667. Epub 2013 Oct 8.


Although Taenia hydatigena is one of the most prevalent taeniid species of livestock, very little molecular genetic information exists for this parasite. Up to 100 sheep isolates of T. hydatigena were collected from 19 abattoirs located in the provinces of Tehran, Alborz and Kerman. A calibrated microscope was used to measure the larval rostellar hook lengths. Following DNA extraction, fragments of cytochrome c oxidase 1 (CO1) and 12S rRNA genes were amplified by the polymerase chain reaction method and the amplicons were subjected to sequencing. The mean total length of large and small hooks was 203.4 μm and 135.9 μm, respectively. Forty CO1 and 39 12S rRNA sequence haplotypes were obtained in the study. The levels of pairwise nucleotide variation between individual haplotypes of CO1 and 12S rRNA genes were determined to be between 0.3-3.4% and 0.2-2.1%, respectively. The overall nucleotide variation among all the CO1 haplotypes was 9.7%, and for all the 12S rRNA haplotypes it was 10.1%. A significant difference was observed between rostellar hook morphometry and both CO1 and 12S rRNA sequence variability. A significantly high level of genetic variation was observed in the present study. The results showed that the 12S rRNA gene is more variable than CO1.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Body Size
  • DNA, Helminth / genetics
  • Echinococcosis / parasitology
  • Echinococcosis / veterinary*
  • Iran
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Phylogeny
  • RNA, Ribosomal / genetics
  • Sheep
  • Sheep Diseases / parasitology*
  • Taenia / classification
  • Taenia / genetics*
  • Taenia / growth & development
  • Taenia / isolation & purification*


  • DNA, Helminth
  • RNA, Ribosomal
  • RNA, ribosomal, 12S