A new plant-parasitic nematode worm (Meloidoderita salina) was found in a tidal salt marsh at Mont Saint Michel Bay (MSMB) in France, where its abbey is a world-famous historical heritage. The species name 'salina' refers to salty soil and is derived from the Latin word 'sal' or 'salis' meaning 'salt'. The study was published in the peer-reviewed, open source scientific journal ZooKeys.
The female nematode worm of Meloidoderita salina deposits its eggs in two different structures. One of them is called egg mass which is an external gelatinous matrix, the other one is a cystoid, which is a swollen uterus containing some eggs. Cystoid are harder and stronger than gelatinous matrix. On the surface of the cystoids of Meloidoderita salina, nematologists observed a specific and unique hexagonal beaded pattern.
"This discovery is probably the first observation of a real hexagonal pattern in the group of nematode worms so far, and further research is needed to find out its unknown origin", said Prof. Dr. Gerrit Karssen, one of the senior members of the team.
A tidal salt marsh, a transition zone between land and water, is a highly divers ecosystem. In MSMB, where this new nematode species was found, a large part of its area are tidal salt marshes in which a high number of ecological studies were done, although nematode worms have been mostly neglected.
"Meloidoderita salina is the first plant-parasitic nematode worm described from Mont Saint Michel Bay", said leading author Samad Ashrafi. This new roundworm parasitizes Sea purslane which is a halophytic plant (is found in salt waters). As a vegetable, the leaves of the plant have a salty, spinach-like taste and are edible raw or cooked and are also served in restaurants.
Based on the distribution map of Sea purslane in Europe, the team expects to find this new plant-parasitic nematode worm in "other western European countries such as Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany and the UK".
The nematologists who described this nematode worm predict it is likely to find Meloidoderita salina on other halophytic plants, grown in similar salt marsh areas.
Ashrafi S, Mugniéry D, van Heese EYJ, van Aelst AC, Helder J, Karssen G (2012) Description of Meloidoderita salina sp. n. (Nematoda, Sphaeronematidae) from a micro-tidal salt marsh at Mont-Saint-Michel Bay in France. ZooKeys 249: 1–26. doi: 10.3897/zookeys.249.4138
Pensoft Publishers: http://www.pensoft.net
This press release was posted to serve as a topic for discussion. Please comment below. We try our best to only post press releases that are associated with peer reviewed scientific literature. Critical discussions of the research are appreciated. If you need help finding a link to the original article, please contact us on twitter or via e-mail.
After a severe brain injury, some people remain in a vegetative or minimally conscious state, unable to speak or move intentionally, and apparently unaware of the world around them. But in recent years, neuroscientists have found signs that some of these patients may still be conscious, at least to a degree. Now researchers have used a branch of mathematics called graph theory to search for neural signatures of consciousness.
Few parasitoids are more bizarre or disturbing than the wasps of the genus Glyptapanteles, whose females inject their eggs into living caterpillars. Once inside, the larvae mature, feeding on the caterpillar’s body fluids before gnawing through its skin en masse and emerging into the light of day. And despite the trauma, not only does the caterpillar survive---initially at least---but the larvae proceed to mind-control it, turning their host into a bodyguard that protects them as they spin their cocoons and finish maturing. Then, finally, the caterpillar starves to death, but only after the tiny wasps emerge from their cocoons and fly away.
From their new book A History of Life in 100 Fossils, Paul Taylor and Aaron O'Dea share the story of 10 incredible fossils
We love origin stories. When we see successful groups of animals and plants, we wonder where they came …
First research of its kind shows that tasers could impair a person's memory and thought process
Sometimes the most fascinating animals are the ones that are no longer with us. The oddly named sthenurine is no exception.
Australian banded stilts use mysterious cues to know when to head toward ephemeral lakes in the country’s otherwise dry interior
The intriguing story of how whale evolution was unpicked is told in The Walking Whales, revealing what it's like to be a globe-trotting palaeontologist
Cells derived from embryos appear to have improved vision in more than half of the 18 patients who had become legally blind because of two progressive, currently incurable eye diseases.
Oil rigs are rarely lauded by conservationists, but fish seem to love them – they have more fish living around them than natural rocky reefs do