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Review of the parasitic nematodes of marine fishes from off the American continent

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  09 September 2022

Felipe B. Pereira
Department of Parasitology, Institute of Biological Sciences, Federal University of Minas Gerais, Av. Antonio Carlos, 6627, Pampulha, CEP 31270-901, Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil
David González-Solís*
El Colegio de la Frontera Sur, Unidad Chetumal, Av. Centenario km 5.5, C.P. 77014, Chetumal, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Author for correspondence: David González-Solís, E-mail:


The ichthyofauna of the Atlantic and Pacific coasts off the American continent is very rich. Consequently, a high biodiversity of nematodes parasitizing these vertebrates is also expected. Currently, data on nematode parasites of marine fish off the Americas are fragmented. A review of all adult nematode species reported parasitizing marine fish from off the American continent is herein presented, as well as comments on their patterns of diversity, life cycles and advances in the taxonomic and phylogenetic knowledge. A total of 209 valid species, 19 species inquirendae and 6 dubious records have been recorded, the majority from the fish taxa Eupercaria and Perciformes. The families Sciaenidae, Serranidae and Lutjanidae, as well as the tropical and temperate Atlantic waters, exhibited the highest records of parasitic nematodes. The Cucullanidae, Philometridae and Cystidicolidae were the most speciose families of nematodes, which may be related to technological advances and relatively recent efforts of taxonomists, resulting in description of new taxa and the resolution of taxonomic problems. Numerous taxonomic questions still need resolution and, even though genetic data have been important for this process, the database is very scarce. This is the first review on all currently known nematode species parasitizing marine fish off the Americas and may serve as an important basis of reference for future approaches on these organisms.

Review Article
Copyright © The Author(s), 2022. Published by Cambridge University Press

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