Procamallanus spiculogubernaculus Agarwal, 1958 (Nematoda: Camallanidae) from Stinging catfish, Heteropneustes fossilis in India: morphological characterization and molecular data

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The nematode, Procamallanus spiculogubernaculus Agarwal, 1958 was found from the Stinging catfish, Heteropneustes fossilis (Bloch, 1794) from Ghazipur, Delhi, India. Morphological characterization, including scanning electron microscope observation supplemented with DNA sequences is provided. Specimens recently found are characterized by the presence of an unlined buccal capsule having a small basal ring, esophagus muscular and glandular, vulva position is slightly post-equatorial, tail conical, long, and ending in three digit-like processes, phasmids present at about mid-length and cloaca located at the posterior end. In this study the species P. spiculogubernaculus is validated on the basis of molecular data after 47 years from its original description. In the scanning electron microscope examination, the topology of mouth and sensory pits in anterior portion, while the phasmids and digit like processes in posterior portion is clearly observed. Molecular data of the 18S ribosomal RNA and mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (cox1) gene were analyzed. Molecular phylogenetic analyses supported the validity of Procamallanus spiculogubernaculus and confirmed the paraphyletic status of the members of Procamallanus, Spirocamallanus, Camallanus and Paracamallanus. Taxonomic status of members of the family Camallanidae are briefly discussed along with the results of the systematic evaluation of P. spiculogubernaculus based on molecular data.

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