Virginia Institute of Marine Science
Parasite-Journal De La Societe Francaise De Parasitologie
A gill-associated Perkinsus sp. isolated from the softshell clam (Myo arenaria) is described as a new species, P. chesapeaki sp. nov. Examination of the parasite in seawater cultures revealed life cycle stages and zoosporulation processes similar to those described for other species of the genus Perkinsus. Prezoosporangia developed thickened cell walls upon contraction of the cytoplasm and development of a distinctive clear area between the cell wall and the protoplast. Successive bipartition of the protoplast led to the formation of hundred's of zoospores within mature sporangia. Zoospores were released into seawater through one or more discharge tubes, Ultrastructural studies revealed an oblong zoospore possessing two flagella that arose from a concave side located in the upper third of the zoospore body. The anterior flagellum possessed a unilateral array of hair-like structures. A large anterior vacuole and basolateral nucleus dominated the cytoplasm of the zoospore body. The presence of a rudimentary apical complex including an open-sided conoid, rhoptries, micronemes, and subpellicular microtubules were also discerned. Differences in zoospore morphology, and sequence analyses of two genes previously reported, support the designation of the gill-associated Perkinsus from the softshell clam as a new species.
McLaughlin, SM; Tall, BD; Shaheen, A; Elsayed, EE; and Faisal, M, "Zoosporulation of a new Perkinsus species isolated from the gills of the softshell clam Mya arenaria" (2000). VIMS Articles. 1591.