Differences in saliva composition among three Brazilian populations of Panstrongylus megistus (Hemiptera, Reduviidae)

SE Barbosa, L Diotaiuti, RPP Soares MH Pereira 

    Comparisons of electrophoretic profiles of triatomines (Panstrongylus megistus) from the Brazilian states of Bahia (BA), Minas Gerais (MG) and Santa Catarina (SC) revealed differences in the composition of the saliva between the three populations. A phenogram constructed on the basis of the most representative electrophoretic banding patterns allowed the specimens tested to be divided into two groups. The BA and SC populations could be completely separated while some individuals from MG could be placed in each group. The BA population presented fewer bands than the MG and SC ones. The populations studied also differed with regard to their degree of association with human habitations (sylvatic, peridomiciliary and/or intradomiciliary) and our results suggest that the proteinaceous composition of the saliva of the three distinct populations of triatomines could be related to the hosts each is likely to encounter.

Keywords: Triatomines, Saliva, Panstrongylus megistus, Interpopulation variability