Research interests

Parasitology, especially avian haemosporidian parasites with using molecular biological techniques. I researched the prevalence of parasites among captive birds for their ex-situ conservation. Additionally, I studied the genetic diversity and genetic structure of the island birds. Currently, I have developed my interest in host-parasite relationships, focusing on Haemproteus species (Haemosporida, Haemoproteidae) and their genetic diversity using morphological and molecular data.

Annotation of the dissertation

The dissertation aims to understand the assignment of the genetic lineage of the Haemoproteus species and morphotypes to species.

The project will result in:
– Collate existing data of Haemoproteus, when morphological and molecular data are available
– Analyse the morphology of infections that have been characterised molecularly but not morphologically
– Determine the levels of cryptic molecular diversity within morphotypes and confirm whether molecular lineages within the same morphotype cluster phylogenetically
– Test additional molecular markers to examine whether cytochrome b is the most appropriate marker to identify Haemoproteus species, or to examine whether ecological inferences will result from molecular lineage data correlate with those obtained from morphological species definitions.

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National scientific conferences:

  1. Shimizu, M., Aratani, S., Inumaru, M., Echigoya, Y., Sato, Y. Prevalence of haemosporidian parasites in captive penguins in Japan in 2018. National Conference „25th Conference of Japanese Society of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine“, 1st of September – Yamaguchi (Japan). Oral Presentation