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Nature. 2013 Apr 4;496(7443):57-63. doi: 10.1038/nature12031. Epub 2013 Mar 13.

The genomes of four tapeworm species reveal adaptations to parasitism.

Author information

1
Parasite Genomics, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Wellcome Trust Genome Campus, Hinxton, Cambridge CB10 1SA, UK.
2
Institute of Biotechnology, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, 04510 México D.F., México.
3
Parasite Genomics, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Wellcome Trust Genome Campus, Hinxton, Cambridge CB10 1SA, UK; Institute of Biotechnology, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, 04510 México D.F., México.
4
Institute of Biomedical Research, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, 04510 México D.F., México.
5
State Key Laboratory of Veterinary Etiological Biology, Key Laboratory of Veterinary Parasitology of Gansu Province, Lanzhou Veterinary Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, No 1, Xujiaping, Chengguan District, Lanzhou 730046, Gansu Province, China.
6
Instituto de Microbiología y Parasitología Médica, Universidad de Buenos Aires-Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Tecnológicas (IMPaM, UBA-CONICET). Facultad de Medicina, Paraguay 2155, C1121ABG, Buenos Aires, Argentina.
7
Department of Biomedical Sciences, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa 50011, USA.
8
Institute of Parasitology, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Zürich, Winterthurerstrasse 266a, CH-8057 Zürich, Switzerland.
9
Cátedra de Inmunologá, Facultad de Quámica, Universidad de la República. Av. Alfredo Navarro 3051, piso 2, Montevideo, CP 11600, Uruguay.
10
Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3PS, UK.
11
Beijing Institute of Genomics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, No.7 Beitucheng West Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing 100029, PR China.
12
Department of Biochemistry & Molecular and Medical Genetics, University of Toronto, Program in Molecular Structure & Function, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
13
University of Würzburg, Institute of Hygiene and Microbiology, Würzburg, Germany.
14
Department of Life Sciences, The Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, London SW7 5BD, UK.
15
Department of Life Sciences, The Natural History Museum, Cromwell Road, London SW7 5BD, UK; Department of Zoology, School of Natural Sciences and Regenerative Medicine Institute (REMEDI), National University of Ireland Galway, University Road, Galway, Ireland.
16
Department of Ecosystem and Public Health, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada.
17
Institute of Parasitology, McGill University, 2111 Lakeshore Road, Ste. Anne de Bellevue, Quebec, H9X 3V9. Canada.
18
Institute of Biotechnology, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, 04510 México D.F., México; National Institute of Genomic Medicine, Ministry of Health, 01900, México D.F., México.
#
Contributed equally

Abstract

Tapeworms (Cestoda) cause neglected diseases that can be fatal and are difficult to treat, owing to inefficient drugs. Here we present an analysis of tapeworm genome sequences using the human-infective species Echinococcus multilocularis, E. granulosus, Taenia solium and the laboratory model Hymenolepis microstoma as examples. The 115- to 141-megabase genomes offer insights into the evolution of parasitism. Synteny is maintained with distantly related blood flukes but we find extreme losses of genes and pathways that are ubiquitous in other animals, including 34 homeobox families and several determinants of stem cell fate. Tapeworms have specialized detoxification pathways, metabolism that is finely tuned to rely on nutrients scavenged from their hosts, and species-specific expansions of non-canonical heat shock proteins and families of known antigens. We identify new potential drug targets, including some on which existing pharmaceuticals may act. The genomes provide a rich resource to underpin the development of urgently needed treatments and control.

PMID:
23485966
PMCID:
PMC3964345
DOI:
10.1038/nature12031
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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