Progress in Taxonomy of the Apicomplexan Protozoa

J Protozool. 1988 Nov;35(4):518-20. doi: 10.1111/j.1550-7408.1988.tb04141.x.


In 1987, 4516 species and 339 genera of the phylum Apicomplexa had been named. They consisted of the gregarines (subclass Gregarinasida) (1624 named species and 231 named genera), the hemogregarines (family Haemogregarinidae) (399 species and 4 genera), the eimeriorins (order Eimeriorida) (1771 species and 43 genera), the hemospororids (order Haemospororida) (444 species and 9 genera), the piroplasmids (order Piroplasmorida) (173 species and 20 genera), and a few others (105 species and 32 genera). The first apicomplexan protozoon was seen by Antony van Leeuwenhoek; in 1674 he saw oocysts of Eimeria stiedai in the gall bladder of a rabbit. The first member of the phylum to be named (by Dufour in 1828) was Gregarina ovata in earwigs. During the quarter century 1826-1850, 41 species and 6 genera of Apicomplexa were named. These numbers increased progressively. In the quarter century 1951-1975, 1873 new species and 83 new genera were named. Data are given for the numbers of named species and genera of apicomplexan protozoa of each group known in 1850, 1875, 1900, 1925, 1950, 1975, and 1987.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apicomplexa / classification*