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Parasite. 2019;26:50. doi: 10.1051/parasite/2019054. Epub 2019 Aug 21.

A new genus and species of pinworm (Nematoda, Oxyuridae) from the gray mouse opossum, Tlacuatzin canescens.

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Department of Zoology, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL 62901-6501, USA.
Laboratorio de Parasitología de Animales Silvestres, Facultad de Ciencias Biológicas, Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Morelos, Av. Universidad No. 1001, Col. Chamilpa, CP 62210 Cuernavaca, Morelos, México.
Red de Biología y Conservación de Vertebrados, Instituto de Ecología A. C., Carretera Antigua a Coatepec 351, El Haya, Xalapa 91070, Veracruz, México.


Tlacuatzoxyuris simpsoni n. gen. n. sp. is described from the cecum of the gray opossum, Tlacuatzin canescens, a species endemic to the deciduous dry forest of Mexico. The digestive tracts of four specimens were examined for parasites; three of these were archived in the American Museum of Natural History and one was a live capture. Relative to the other four monotypic genera of pinworms known to infect opossums, the new genus is diagnosed on the basis of a round cephalic plate with a semicircular stoma surrounded by a rim. In addition, males feature a prominent cephalic vesicle not fully developed in females, accounting for sexual dimorphism. The new species includes small worms that feature a conspicuous, not reticulated cephalic vesicle and semicircular stoma and lateral alae with two crests. In addition, the postcloacal cuticle of males features a small area with ornamentation between cloaca and submedial papillae. Finally, both spicule and gubernaculum are relatively short. Although the eggs of Tlacuatzoxyuris n. gen. are unknown, the conspicuous differences in traits used in the diagnosis of genera prompted us to propose a new genus for the new species. This is the first species of Oxyuridae reported in mouse opossums outside South America, and the fifth species of the family occurring in didelphimorph marsupials. This is an example of the usefulness of documenting the diversity of parasites associated with this unique clade of mammals through the examination of preserved tissues.

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