1887

Abstract

Calonymphids are a group of multinucleate, multiflagellate protists belonging to the order Cristamonadida (Parabasalia) that are found exclusively in the hindgut of termites from the family Kalotermitidae. Despite their impressive morphological complexity and diversity, few species have been formally described and fewer still have been characterized at the molecular level. In this study, four novel species of calonymphids were isolated and characterized: and spp. nov., from and from Florida, USA, and and , spp. nov., from and from Colombia. Each of these species was distinguished from its congeners by residing in a distinct host and by differences at the molecular level. Phylogenetic analyses of small subunit (SSU) rDNA indicated that the genera and were probably not monophyletic, though the genus , previously only represented by one sequence in molecular analyses, appeared with these new data to be monophyletic. This was in keeping with the traditional evolutionary view of the group in which the morphology of the genus is considered to be derived, while that of the genus is ancestral and therefore probably plesiomorphic.

Funding
This study was supported by the:
  • Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) (Award 227301)
  • NSERC postgraduate doctoral fellowship
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2011-10-01
2021-10-26
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