Calyptospora-Funduli (Apicomplexa, Calyptosporiadae) in the Liver of the Gulf Toadfish, Opsanus-Beta

M.F.T. Oliveira, University of Southern Mississippi
W.E. Hawkins, Gulf Coast Research Laboratory
Robin M. Overstreet, Gulf Coast Research Laboratory
J.W. Fournie, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency


Oocysts of the apicomplexan protozoan Calyptospora funduli were found in the liver of a gulf toadfish (Opsanus beta). The infected specimen was 1 of 54 (1.9%) toadfish livers examined histologically. The paraffin-embedded specimen containing the infection as well as similar material from Fundulus similis were processed for scanning electron microscopical (SEM) examination to view diagnostic surface features of C funduli sporocysts. SEM examination confirmed sporopodia and a thin veil surrounding each of the 4 sporocysts per oocyst. Although a single case, the toadfish infection expands the broad host specificity of C funduli to include a host other than an atheriniform fish species.