Cuticular hydrocarbon composition and phenotypic variability in sympatric populations of Ixodes ricinus ticks from Poland

A. Estrada-Peña, J. Castellá, K. Siuda

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    Abstract

    Gas chromatography of cuticular hydrocarbons was used to assess genetic similarity and heterozygosity between 18 sympatric populations of adult Ixodes ricinus ticks collected from Poland. Sixteen n-alkanes, 45 monomethylalkanes, and 36 dimethylalkanes were identified. Forty-one compounds were detected in 90% of the specimens and nine hydrocarbons were present in all the specimens studied. Visual inspection of chromatograms revealed major differences in the relative abundance of hydrocarbons between populations of I. ricinus. The average proportion of heterozygotic hydrocarbons was 50.68%, while the average genetic similarity among all populations was 0.967. Two other methods were used to measure the intrapopulation variability: the number of isomeric forms for each hydrocarbon and the range of hydrocarbon abundance. It was found that some hydrocarbons manifested an unexpectedly high number of isomeric patterns, such as nonacosane (21 patterns), triacontane (23), pentacosane (26), and hexacosane (28). Our data suggest that I. ricinus ticks from Poland consist of several interbreeding, non-isolated populations, with a high degree of genetic flow between them. © 1993 Science and Technology Letters.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)247-263
    JournalExperimental and Applied Acarology
    Volume18
    Issue number5
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 May 1994

    Keywords

    • Cuticulan hydrocarbons
    • gas chromatography
    • Ixodes ricinus
    • Poland
    • ticks

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