In last few years, a great effort has been made to understand genetic interrelationships of European and North American populations of giant liver fluke Fascioloides magna (Trematoda, Fasciolidae). In Europe, spatial distribution of this parasite is evidently dynamic and ongoing process since new F. magna populations have constantly been emerging. Most recently, occurrence of F. magna in red deer (Cervus elaphus), sika deer (Cervus nippon), fallow deer (Dama dama), roe deer (Capreolus capreolus), and wild boar (Sus scrofa) was reported from north-eastern Bavaria in Germany. Fascioloides magna specimens collected from those hosts were genotyped using two mitochondrial regions; cytochrome c oxidase (cox1) and nicotinamide dehydrogenase (nad1). Results were compared with reference mitochondrial haplotypes of previously characterized European F. magna populations from northern Italy, Czech Republic/Poland, and the Danube floodplain forests. The study revealed genetic uniformity of F. magna specimens from Germany with flukes from the Czech focus, what indicated that fascioloidosis has been spreading beyond well established Czech focus into neighbouring countries.
Keywords: Fascioloidosis; cox1; giant liver fluke; mitochondrial haplotype; nad1; natural focus.