Tetrodotoxin (TTX) and its analogue 6-. epiTTX had been detected in the red-spotted newt, . Notophthalmus viridescens. Thirty specimens of a population from Pennsylvania, USA were histologically examined for the presence of intestinal parasites. More than 50% were found to be infected with nematodes (Trichocephalidae), trematodes or cestodes (Pseudophyllidae). The mean values of TTX and 6-. epiTTX in parasitized and in non-parasitized newts were not significantly different. Using a monoclonal antibody-based immunoenzymatic technique, TTX was localized in the intestinal tissue as well as in the parasites indicating that they accumulate the toxin and suggesting that TTX and 6-. epiTTX are not providing protection from parasites to the newts.
- Intestinal parasites
- Notophthalmus viridescens