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|Title:||Significance of eggshell morphology as an additional tool to distinguish species of sand flies (Diptera: Psychodidae: Phlebotominae)|
|Abstract:||Morphological characteristics of eggshells are important in sand fly ootaxonomy. In this study, eggshells from Phlebotomus stantoni Newstead, Sergentomyia khawi (Raynal), and Grassomyia indica (Theodor) sand flies collected in Chiang Mai province, Thailand were examined and characterized using light microscopy (LM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Then, eggshell morphology of these three species was described for the first time. Each gravid female was forced to lay eggs by decapitation and the eggs were collected for SEM analysis. Egg laying females were identified by morphological examination and molecular typing using cytochrome b (Cytb) as a molecular marker. The chorionic sculpturing of Ph. stantoni eggs combines two patterns on the same egg: unconnected parallel ridges and reticular patterns. Sergentomyia khawi and Gr. indica have similar chorionic polygonal patterns, but their exochorionic morphology and aeropylar area are different. Results indicate that eggshell morphological characteristics such as chorionic pattern, exochorionic morphology, inter-ridge/boundary area, aeropylar area (including the number of aeropyles) and basal layer, can be useful to develop morphological identification keys of eggs. These can serve as an additional tool to distinguish species of sand flies. In addition, the chorionic sculpturing of the eggs of the three species of sand flies observed by LM is useful for species identification in gravid females with spermathecae obscured by eggs.|
|Appears in Collections:||CMUL: Journal Articles|
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