Isoenzymes of human lice: Pediculus humanus and P. capitis

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2000
Authors:M. D. Amevigbe, Ferrer, A., Champorie, S., Monteny, N., Deunff, J., Richard-Lenoble, D.
Journal:Medical and Veterinary Entomology
Pagination:419 - 425
Date Published:2000
ISBN Number:0269-283X
Keywords:animals, electrophoresis, France, humans, Isoenzymes/chemistry, Madagascar, Mali, Pediculus, polymorphism, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't, Senegal, U.S.A.

Human lice (Phthiraptera: Pediculidae) from Africa, America and Europe were electrophoresed for 28 enzymes, with special interest in metabolic factors likely to be involved with insecticide resistance. Zymogram profiles of the body louse (Pediculus humanus L. from France and U.S.A.) and the head louse (P. capitis DeGeer from France, Madagascar, Mali & Senegal) were compared. Only esterase two enzymes, phosphoglucomutase (Pgm) and 3 (Est-3), showed electrophoretic variation. In our starch gel electrophoresis conditions, P. humanus showed three electromorphs of Pgm migrating anodally 6, 11 and 16 mm (designated alleles a, b, c, respectively). Of the putative Pgm alleles, b and c occurred in all samples of both species of lice, whereas allele a was found only in P. humanus lab strain from U.S.A. Esterase 3 had four electromorphs migrating 23, 26, 30 and 35 mm (designated alleles a, b, c and d). Among putative Est alleles, a was found only in P. capitis from Bamako (all 14 specimens aa homozygotes), allele d was found only in P. capitis from Dakar (39% frequency), whereas Est-3 alleles b and c showed apparently balanced polymorphism in all samples of both P. humanus and P. capitis except that from Bamako. Despite the limited amount of isoenzyme variation detected (only 2/31 polymorphic loci), divergences of Est-3 and Pgm among Pediculus populations may be relevant to their biosystematics and resistance.

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