A DNA probe for the detection of Dicrocoelium dendriticum in ants of Formica spp. and Lasius spp

Parasitol Res. 1998 Jun;84(6):505-8. doi: 10.1007/s004360050437.


Repetitive DNA sequences present in the genome of Dicrocoelium dendriticum were identified by hybridization of genomic DNA that had been digested with different restriction enzymes with 32P-labeled genomic D. dendriticum DNA. DNA fragments containing repetitive sequences were isolated from PstI-digested D. dendriticum DNA and were subcloned into a plasmid vector. Plasmids containing repetitive sequences were identified by colony hybridization. One of these plasmids, designated Ddr-IV, was isolated and used as a probe in further studies. Ddr-IV is specific for D. dendriticum since it does not hybridize to DNA isolated from other trematodes. In addition, Ddr-IV was capable of detecting D. dendriticum metacercariae in ants (Formica cunicularia, F. rufibarbis, and Lasius sp.), which act as second intermediate hosts in the parasite's life cycle. Since metacercariae constitute the infectious stage of the parasite for grazing animals, Ddr-IV will provide a useful tool for epidemiology studies of dicrocoeliosis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Ants / parasitology*
  • Base Sequence
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • DNA Probes*
  • DNA, Helminth / analysis*
  • Dicrocoelium / genetics
  • Dicrocoelium / isolation & purification*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Nucleic Acid Hybridization
  • Repetitive Sequences, Nucleic Acid


  • DNA Probes
  • DNA, Helminth