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Veterinary Medicine International
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 405740, 10 pages
Research Article

Molecular and Morphological Characterization of Fasciola spp. Isolated from Different Host Species in a Newly Emerging Focus of Human Fascioliasis in Iran

1Department of Parasitology and Mycology, School of Medicine, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, P.O. Box 7134845794, Shiraz, Iran
2Department of Parasitology and Mycology, School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
3Cellular and Molecular Research Center, Yasuj University of Medical Sciences, Yasuj, Iran

Received 10 January 2014; Revised 27 April 2014; Accepted 12 May 2014; Published 11 June 2014

Academic Editor: Guillermo Virkel

Copyright © 2014 Reza Shafiei et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The current study aimed to find out the morphometric and genotypic divergences of the flukes isolated from different hosts in a newly emerging focus of human fascioliasis in Iran. Adult Fasciola spp. were collected from 34 cattle, 13 sheep, and 11 goats from Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad province, southwest of Iran. Genomic DNA was extracted from the flukes and PCR-RFLP was used to characterize the isolates. The ITS1, ITS2, and mitochondrial genes (mtDNA) of NDI and COI from individual liver flukes were amplified and the amplicons were sequenced. Genetic variation within and between the species was evaluated by comparing the sequences. Moreover, morphometric characteristics of flukes were measured through a computer image analysis system. Based on RFLP profile, from the total of 58 isolates, 41 isolates (from cattle, sheep, and goat) were identified as Fasciola hepatica, while 17 isolates from cattle were identified as Fasciola gigantica. Comparison of the ITS1 and ITS2 sequences showed six and seven single-base substitutions, resulting in segregation of the specimens into two different genotypes. The sequences of COI markers showed seven DNA polymorphic sites for F. hepatica and 35 DNA polymorphic sites for F. gigantica. Morphological diversity of the two species was observed in linear, ratios, and areas measurements. The findings have implications for studying the population genetics, epidemiology, and control of the disease.