Honors Theses

Sequencing the Mitochondrial DNA of Lagenidium juracyae

Kunal Kanwar, Nova Southeastern University


Lagenidium oomycetes are fungus-like eukaryotic microorganisms that are closely related to diatoms and brown algae. One defining characteristic of Lagenidium oomycetes is their ability to act as a parasite during the larval stage of mosquitoes. Thus, over the past few decades, mosquito infecting Lagenidium oomycetes have been considered to serve as pesticides in various industries. However, some Lagenidium oomycetes have been linked to new mammalian skin conditions, particularly in dogs. As more research has been conducted about these skin conditions, there has been new data showing the presence of new species of Lagenidium oomycetes aside from the most popular Lagenidium giganteum. My project set course to differentiate and sequence the mitochondrial DNA of one of these new emerging species known as Lagenidium juracyae. More specifically, my goal was to sequence the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase 1 & 2 genes and later compare these sequences to that of existing Lagenidium oomycetes. By doing this, more can be understood about the differences between the species and whether Lagenidium juracyae can be used instead of Lagenidium giganteum in future pesticides. After completing the necessary methods and procedures, various segments of the mitochondrial DNA of Lagenidium juracyae have been sequenced. This is important for future research projects which can look at the differences between the different Lagenidium species and their sequences, thus, allowing them to better understand which species may be a better alternative for future pesticides.