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Host Stadium Specificity in the Gregarine Assemblage Parasitizing Tenebrio molitor

R. E. Clopton, J. Janovy, Jr. and T. J. Percival
The Journal of Parasitology
Vol. 78, No. 2 (Apr., 1992), pp. 334-337
DOI: 10.2307/3283484
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3283484
Page Count: 4
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Host Stadium Specificity in the Gregarine Assemblage Parasitizing Tenebrio molitor
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Abstract

Reciprocal cross-stadia experimental infections were used to demonstrate stadium specificity within the gregarine assemblage parasitizing Tenebrio molitor, the yellow mealworm. Gregarina cuneata, Gregarina polymorpha, and Gregarina steini are characteristic parasites of larval T. molitor. Gregarina niphandrodes is a characteristic parasite of adult T. molitor. Experimental infections were produced in all homologous host-parasite combinations. No infection was produced in heterologous or cross-stadia combinations. This study introduces the concept of separate, distinct parasite niches corresponding to separate life cycle stages and established by known, predictable life cycle events within a single host species.

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