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Morphological Stasis in Time? A Triatoma brasiliensis brasiliensis Study Using Geometric Morphometrics in the Long Run

  • paschoaletto;, letícia
Publication Date
May 26, 2022
DOI: 10.3390/ani12111362
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Triatoma brasiliensis brasiliensis Neiva, 1911 is one of the most important vectors of Chagas disease in the Brazilian semiarid regions in the north-east. The risk imposed by T. b. brasiliensis to the human populations, due to frequent invasions and/or colonization of the domiciles, demands constant monitoring and control actions as well as an understanding of its evolutionary process. In this context, the following research studies the pattern of shape adaptation over time using a large dataset from 102 years of specimen collections in order to identify the morphological plasticity of this vector in Brazil. This dataset was analyzed using geometric morphometrics tools and the timescale was divided into eight different groups, containing specimens from 1912 to 2014. Geometric morphometrics analysis showed an interesting morphological stasis in the wing shape of T. b. brasiliensis, which allowed us to understand the high capacity of adaptation to changes in climate condition through time, and the invasive status which Triatoma species have around the world. Moreover, these results showed novel findings as an interesting phenotypic pattern, with no modifications in more than 100 years, leading us to understand the shape evolution in Triatominae as a vector species of diseases.

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