Molecular characterization of Theileria spp. using ribosomal RNA
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The molecular characterization of twenty six Theileria spp. isolates and one C. felis isolate were done on the small subunit ribosomal RNA (SSU rRNA) gene, the 5.8S gene, and the two internal transcribed spacer regions using gDNA. The SSU rRNA gene is increasingly accepted as a widely used marker for characterization, taxonomic classification, and phylogenetic analysis and this gene has been sequenced from a variety of different organisms, resulting in a large database for sequence comparisons (Chae et al. 1998; Chae et al., 1999 a,b,c; Stockham et al., 2000; Cossio-Bayugar et al., 2002; Gubbels et al., 2000). The genomic region consists of the internal transcribed spacer 1 (ITS 1), the 5.8S gene, and internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS 2) (ITS 1-5.8S-ITS 2 gene region) and separates the SSU rRNA gene from the large subunit ribosomal RNA gene. The 5.8S rRNA gene is highly conserved in size and nucleotide sequence, is relatively constant in molecular weight, and has an average chain length of approximately 160 nucleotides and has proven useful in dividing subgenera of Gyrodactylus ((Nazar, 1984; Zietara et al., 2002). Pairwise comparisons were done between the clones of an individual isolate and among the clones of the different isolates. Phylogenetic trees were made from the resulting sequences. This study shows that different SSU rRNA genes may be associated with ITS 1-5.8S-ITS 2 gene regions of distinct sequence in the same isolate. This study also demonstrates that considerable ITS 1-5.8S-ITS 2 gene region sequence variation may exist within a species. This may be useful for subspeciation designation, or may simply reflect considerable variation within the population. This study shows that the ITS 1-5.8S-ITS 2 gene region may be a useful molecular marker for the taxonomy of Theileria spp.
Bendele, Kylie Gayle (2004). Molecular characterization of Theileria spp. using ribosomal RNA. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from