Examination of the oyster Ostreola equestris as a potential reservoir host for a species of Bonamia discovered in Crassostrea ariakensis in North Carolina (NC), USA, revealed a second novel Bonamia sp. Histopathology, electron microscopy, and molecular phylogenetic analysis support the designation of a new parasite species, Bonamia perspora n. sp., which is the first Bonamia species shown to produce a typical haplosporidian spore with an orifice and hinged operculum. Spores were confirmed to be from B. perspora by fluorescent in situ hybridization. Bonamia perspora was found at Morehead City and Wilmington, NC, with an overall prevalence of 1.4% (31/2,144). Uninucleate, plasmodial, and sporogonic stages occurred almost exclusively in connective tissues; uninucleate stages (2-6 μm) were rarely observed in hemocytes. Spores were 4.3-6.4 μm in length. Ultrastructurally, uninucleate, diplokaryotic, and plasmodial stages resembled those of other spore-forming haplosporidians, but few haplosporosomes were present, and plasmodia were small. Spore ornamentation consisted of spore wall-derived, thin, flat ribbons that emerged haphazardly around the spore, and which terminated in what appeared to be four-pronged caps. Number of ribbons per spore ranged from 15 to 30, and their length ranged from 1.0 to 3.4 μm. Parsimony analysis identified B. perspora as a sister species to Bonamia ostreae.
- electron microscopy
- fluorescent in situ hybridization
- small subunit ribosomal DNA