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Phylogeny and comprehensive revision of mugiliform-infecting myxobolids (Myxozoa, Myxobolidae), with the morphological and molecular redescription of the cryptic species Myxobolus exiguus

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  10 October 2018

S. Rocha*
Institute of Biomedical Sciences Abel Salazar, University of Porto (ICBAS/UP), Rua Jorge Viterbo Ferreira no. 228, 4050-313 Porto, Portugal Interdisciplinary Centre of Marine and Environmental Research (CIIMAR), Terminal de Cruzeiros de Leixões, Av. General Norton de Matos s/n, 4450-208 Matosinhos, Portugal
C. Azevedo
Institute of Biomedical Sciences Abel Salazar, University of Porto (ICBAS/UP), Rua Jorge Viterbo Ferreira no. 228, 4050-313 Porto, Portugal Interdisciplinary Centre of Marine and Environmental Research (CIIMAR), Terminal de Cruzeiros de Leixões, Av. General Norton de Matos s/n, 4450-208 Matosinhos, Portugal
E. Oliveira
Institute of Biomedical Sciences Abel Salazar, University of Porto (ICBAS/UP), Rua Jorge Viterbo Ferreira no. 228, 4050-313 Porto, Portugal
Â. Alves
Institute of Biomedical Sciences Abel Salazar, University of Porto (ICBAS/UP), Rua Jorge Viterbo Ferreira no. 228, 4050-313 Porto, Portugal
C. Antunes
Interdisciplinary Centre of Marine and Environmental Research (CIIMAR), Terminal de Cruzeiros de Leixões, Av. General Norton de Matos s/n, 4450-208 Matosinhos, Portugal Aquamuseu do Rio Minho, Parque do Castelinho, 4920-290 Vila Nova de Cerveira, Portugal
P. Rodrigues
IBMC-Institute for Molecular and Cell Biology, Rua Alfredo Allen 208, 4200-135, University of Porto, Portugal i3S-Instituto de Investigação e Inovação em Saúde, Rua Alfredo Allen 208, 4200-135, University of Porto, Portugal
G. Casal
University Institute of Health Sciences & Institute of Research and Advanced Training in Health Sciences and Technologies, CESPU, Rua Central da Gandra no. 1317, 4585-116 Gandra, Portugal
Author for correspondence: Sónia Rocha, E-mail:


Mullets inhabit a wide range of habitats from tropical to temperate regions and play a critical role in their ecosystems. This commercially important fish group constitutes a significant source of food in several geographic regions, and the production of some species for consumption is an increasing trend. About 64 myxosporean species have been reported in mullets, some of which are cryptic, as is the case of Myxobolus exiguus, and M. muelleri. This paper provides, for the first time, a detailed and critical revision of the data available for myxobolids reported in mullets, determining the species that have bona fide mugiliform fish hosts, in accordance with the original species descriptions, the available molecular data and the currently accepted taxonomic and phylogenetic criteria. Phylogenetic analyses using Bayesian inference and maximum-likelihood methodologies suggest that the evolutionary history of myxobolids with bona fide mugiliform fish hosts reflects that of its vertebrate hosts, while reinforcing known evolutionary factors and old systematic issues of the clade of myxobolids. A comprehensive morphological, ultrastructural and molecular redescription is also provided for the cryptic species M. exiguus, from infections in the visceral peritoneum of the thinlip-grey mullet Chelon ramada in the River Minho, Portugal.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2018 

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Phylogeny and comprehensive revision of mugiliform-infecting myxobolids (Myxozoa, Myxobolidae), with the morphological and molecular redescription of the cryptic species Myxobolus exiguus
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Phylogeny and comprehensive revision of mugiliform-infecting myxobolids (Myxozoa, Myxobolidae), with the morphological and molecular redescription of the cryptic species Myxobolus exiguus
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Phylogeny and comprehensive revision of mugiliform-infecting myxobolids (Myxozoa, Myxobolidae), with the morphological and molecular redescription of the cryptic species Myxobolus exiguus
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