Molecular analysis of Dirofilaria repens removed from a subcutaneous nodule in a Japanese woman after a tour to Europe

Jun Suzuki, Seiki Kobayashi, Utako Okata, Hitomi Matsuzaki, Mariko Mori, Ko Ron Chen, Satoshi Iwata

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


A premature female Dirofilaria species, subsequently identified as Dirofilaria repens by its morphological features and mitochondrial 12S ribosomal RNA (12S rRNA) gene sequence, was removed from a subcutaneous nodule of the right temporal region of the head in a Japanese woman 2 years after she noticed swelling of her left calf following an insect sting during a tour to Europe; headache symptoms were noticed a few months later. The sequences of the mitochondrial 12S rRNA and cytochrome c oxidase subunit I genes from the organism were almost identical to those of sequences AM779772 (100% homology, 337/337) and AM749233 (99.8% homology, 536/537) of D. repens isolated from humans in Italy. However, the phylogenetic position of the 18S rRNA-internal transcribed spacer 1-5.8S rRNA region was in the same cluster as that of sequence JX290195 of Dirofilaria sp. "hongkongensis" (96.7% homology, 348/360), which was recently reported from Hong Kong as a novel Dirofilaria species. Information on regional genetic variation in D. repens isolated from animals and humans remains scarce. We report the detailed genetic features of this filaria as a reference isolate from a specific endemic area, to enrich the genetic database of D. repens.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • Dirofilaria repens
  • Imported dirofilariasis
  • Mitochondrial genes
  • Phylogenetic analysis
  • Ribosomal RNA genes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • veterinary (miscalleneous)
  • Insect Science
  • Infectious Diseases


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