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PAGES: 365-366 DOI: Technical notes
Anomalies of Lutzomyia intermedia (Lutz & Neiva, 1912) (Diptera, Psychodidae, Phlebotominae)

Carlos Brisola Marcondes

Departamento de Microbiologia e Parasitologia, Centro de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, Campus Trindade, 88040-900 Florianópolis, SC, Brasil

key words:

Morphological anomalies have been recognized in several American and European Phlebotomine sandflies. E Abonnenc et al. (1971 Cahiers ORSTOM série Ent Med Paras 9: 307-316) and later JP Dedet et al. (1984 Cahiers ORSTOM série Ent Med Paras 22: 99-127) described anomalies in African sandflies. Abonnenc et al. (loc. cit.) listed most references to anomalies. CB Marcondes [1997 Morfometria e DNA Mitocondrial de Populações Sul Americanas de Lutzomyia intermedia (Lutz & Neiva, 1912) (Diptera, Psychodidae, Phlebo-tominae),PhD Thesis, UF Paraná, xxiv+260 pp.] and CB Marcondes et al. (1998 Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz 93: 203-204) listed most references to anomalies. JA Rioux et al. (1965 Ann Soc Ent Franç 1:615-617, 1974 Ann Paras Hum Comp 49: 371-372), FB Almeida (1970 Bol INPA 1: 1-5), B Chaniotis (1971 J Med Ent 8: 459), RW Ashford (1974 J Med Ent 11: 605-616), G Vattier-Bernard (1975 Cah ORSTOM sér Ent Méd Parasitol 13: 115-116), H Addadi and JP Dedet (1977 Arch Inst Pasteur Algérie 52: 135-138), P Dancescu et al. (1979 Arch Inst Pasteur Tunis 56: 53-56), N Léger et al. (1982 Ann Paras Hum Comp 57: 105-107), JM Ubeda Ontiveros et al. (1983 Rev Ibér Parasitol 43:213-218),E Martinez-Ortega and E Conesa Gallego (1987 An Biol Sección Biol An 11: 55-60), H Kassem et al. (1988 J Egypt Public Hlth Assoc 63: 209-213), E Martinez-Ortega et al. (1989 Ann Paras Hum Comp 64: 46-52), J Gallego et al. (1993 Res Rev Parasitol 51: 51-56, 1994 Parasite 1: 283-285) also described anomalies in sandflies, not included in the above cited publications.

Apart from the description, for Lutzomyia neivai (Pinto, 1926), of a female with three spermathecae (HH Taniguchi et al. 1992 Rev Inst Adolfo Lutz 52: 105-106) and of another with anomalous wing venation (Marcondes et al. loc. cit.), no other anomaly was described in insects of the L. intermedia species complex, as defined by CB Marcondes (1996 Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz 91: 457-462).

Symmetrical anomalies in the number of spines of style, as observed for L. longipalpis (Lutz & Neiva, 1912) by IA Sherlock (1958 Rev Bras Biol 18: 433-437), can jeopardise the identification (A Dampf 1945 Bol Ent Ven 4: 153-159, Sherlock 1958 loc. cit.) and induce the description of false new species (D Cazorla et al. 1988 Bol Dir Malar San Amb 28: 91-98). L. alphabetica was described with six spines on the style by JO Coutinho and MP Barretto (1940 Ann Fac Med USP 16: 193-206). Afterwards, MP Barretto (1943 Rev Med Cir Brasil 51: 703-710) indicated that the usual number of spines is five. The study of anomalies, mostly if associated to populational and genetic features, can be very useful.

The following anomalies were observed in L. intermedia:

A male [code in Marcondes 1997 (loc. cit.): ESVN-25M] from Venda Nova do Imigrante, State of Espírito Santo, had an supplementary subapical spine on each style. The distances of the spines from the base of the style are shown in theTable. A female from the same municipality (ESVND-31F) had nine cibarial horizontal teeth.

A male (RJRB-12M) from Rio Bonito, State of Rio de Janeiro, had the third spine of the style on a protuberance 6 mm in length. A male (RJRB-14M) from the same municipality had a constriction in the 5th palpomere.

A male (Coll. Mangabeira-1363, Instituto Oswaldo Cruz Collection) from Governador Valadares, State of Minas Gerais, had an supplementary spine in a style, at 124.8 mm from the base.

A male (RJIT-2M) from Itaguaí, State of Rio de Janeiro, had a conical protuberance in the anterior face of a posterior femur, 137.2 mm from the proximal extremity. Another male (RJIT-4M) from the same municipality had, on one femur, a similar protuberance at 231.6 mm from that extremity and, in the other, two small protuberances, 258.6 mm and 318.4 mm from the extremity.

The specimens from Venda Nova Nova do Imigrante are still in the local collection; the others were sent back to the researchers cited below.

The presence of the supplementary spines in the male from Venda Nova do Imigrante could lead, in a less known insect species and region, to the description of a new species.

MD Feliciangeli et al. (1985 Acta Amaz 15: 157-166) and Cazorla et al. (1988 loc. cit.) observed odd numbers of cibarial horizontal teeth in sandflies from Venezuela. The number of these teeth varied in L. intermedia s. l., but it was even in all the other insects (Marcondes 1997 loc. cit.). All the anomalies in the palps cited by Abonnenc et al. (loc. cit.) were observed in the third segment, unlike the above from Rio Bonito.

The observed frequency of anomalies in L. intermedia s. l. (9:705 or 128: 10,000) was much higher than that of L. longipalpis [24:80,030 or 3:10,000 (Sherlock 1958 loc. cit.)] and of several species from Venezuela [11:10,000 (Cazorla et al. 1988 loc. cit.) and 22: 10,000 (D Cazorla et al. 1991 Bol Ent Ven 6: 11-18)]. L. bahiensis showed such a great variability in the number of setae on the coxite and in the number of spines on style, that it is difficult to define which are the anomalous specimens (IA Sherlock 1963 Rev Bras Biol 23: 49-53). There was no tendency for an aggregation of the anomalous insects in any region, as observed by Abonnenc et al. (loc. cit.) and J Gallego et al. (1991 Res Rev Paras 51: 51-56).

The genetics and the possible importance of these anomalies, mostly those in the genitalia, for the copulation and survival should be evaluated. Studies of great numbers of sandflies (e. g., M Maroli et al. 1994 Parassitologia 36: 251-264) should include or be supplemented by the description of the possibly observed anomalous insects.

Acknowledgements: to Drs RP Brazil (CPRR, Belo Horizonte; insect code: RJRB), A Falqueto (UFES, Vitória; ESVN), S Oliveira (IOC, Rio de Janeiro: IOC Collection; Coll. Mangabeira) and GM Aguiar (IOC, Rio de Janeiro; RJIT), for lending or donating specimens for the study.

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Received 22 July 1998
Accepted 1 February 1999