What is it about?

This study investigated the microbial composition of the most common Hyalomma tick species infesting Tunisian cattle for the first time, as well as the relative contributions of tick sex, life stage, and species to the diversity, richness, and tick microbiome. A metagenomic analysis of the 16S rRNA (V3-V4 region) of tick bacterial microbiota was performed for this purpose using next generation sequencing. The endosymbionts Francisella, Midichloria mitochondrii, and Rickettsia were shown to be the most prevalent in Hyalomma spp. Hyalomma marginatum and H. excavatum showed greater bacterial diversity than H. scupense. Furthermore, in the specific case of H. scupense, microbial diversity and composition appeared to vary according to the tick’s life stage and sex. Rickettsia, Francisella, Ehrlichia, and Erwinia were the most common potential zoonotic bacteria found in Hyalomma ticks.

Featured Image

Why is it important?

Symbiotic bacteria provide ticks with some essential vitamins and cofactors, especially vitamins of group B, which are lacking in the highly specialized hematophagous tick diet. These bacteria are essential for tick’s reproductive fitness, they are implicated in tick adaptation to environmental stress, and they can also influence the colonization, maintenance and transmission of tick-borne pathogens


Improving our knowledge on tick symbionts may lead to new insights for the development of innovative control approaches that are more environmentally friendly than chemical acaricides

mohamed aziz darghouth

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: First insights into the microbiome of Tunisian Hyalomma ticks gained through next-generation sequencing with a special focus on H. scupense, PLoS ONE, May 2022, PLOS,
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0268172.
You can read the full text:

Open access logo


The following have contributed to this page