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Apicomplexa (apicomplexans, sporozoans)

Life > Eukaryotes > Chromalveolata > Alveolata

Apicomplexa are spore-forming single-celled parasites of animals and include species that cause malaria, coccidiosis, redwater, corridor disease, east coast fever and biliary. 

The most important genus medically is Plasmodium as it includes the malaria parasites transmitted by Anopheles mosquitoes. Isospora belli and I. hominis parasitise human intestines causing coccidiosis or isosporosis. Sarcocystis is found in the muscles of many vertebrate animals. Tick-borne diseases of domestic animals caused by apicomplexans include redwater (Babesia bigemina and B. ovis), corridor disease (Theileria lawrenci), east coast fever (Theileria parva), biliary fever of horses (Babesia equi), and biliary fever of dogs (Babesia canis). Synonyms: Sporozoa, Telosporidea. 

 

Colpodellida

Genera: Alphamonas, Colpodella, Voromonas.

 

Aconoidasida

 
 

Haemosporida (haemosporidians)

Blood parasites of vertebrates. Includes Plasmodium species,  some of which are the causative agents of malaria, which kills and debilitates millions of people annually, especially in Africa.

 
 

Piroplasmorida (piroplasmids)

[= Piroplasmida]

Blood parasites of fish, mammals and reptiles (including birds). Vectors of terrestrial hosts are usually species of tick. Babesia species cause redwater in cattle, biliary fever in horses and dogs, and babesiosis in people. Theileria causes corridor disease and east coast fever.

 

Conoidasida

 
 

Coccidiasina

[= Coccidia]

Blood parasites of, mainly, vertebrates. Isospora belli and I. hominis parasitise human intestines causing coccidiosis or isosporosis. Sarcocystis is found in the muscles of many vertebrate animals. Genera: Besnoitia, Caryospora, Cryptosporidium, Cyclospora, Eimeria, Frenkelia, Hammondia, Hepatozoon, Isospora, Lankesterella, Neospora, Sarcocystis, Toxoplasma.

 
 

Gregarinasina (gregarines)

[= Gregarinia]

Parasites of the gut and body cavity of invertebrates and lower Chordates.

 

Publications

  • Adl, S.M., Simpson, A.G., Farmer, M.A., Andersen, R.A., Anderson, O.R., Barta, J.R., Bowser, S.S., Brugerolle, G., Fensome, R.A., Fredericq, S., James, T.Y., Karpov, S., Kugrens, P., Krug, J., Lane, C.E., Lewis, L.A., Lodge, J., Lynn, D.H., Mann, D.G., McCourt, R.M., Mendoza, L., Moestrup, ., Mozley-Standridge, S.E., Nerad, T.A., Shearer, C.A., Smirnov, A.V., Spiegel, F.W. and Taylor, M.F.J.R. 2005. The new higher level classification of eukaryotes with emphasis on the taxonomy of protists. Eukaryote Microbiology 52(5): 399-451.

Text by Hamish Robertson  


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