Overview of GyroDb
History of the Database
The notion of a gyrodactylid database was conceived by the authors independently almost a decade ago, but only started to take shape after we presented an outline for an updated species list of the genus Gyrodactylus at the Fourth International Symposium for Monogenea (ISM4) in Brisbane, 2000. This species list Harris, Shinn, Cable & Bakke, 2004) was actually much more than a species list even at the time of publication. Data on host and geographical range, original species description and related publications were in the format of a searchable Access database. Separate databases stored >26,000 images of gyrodactylids. A wealth of information on the ecology of these parasites was assembled in a range on unpublished formats. Furthermore, we had acquired an archive of basic taxonomic information on many Gyrodactylus species that was not easily accessible to the wider scientific community being published in relatively obscure or not easily accessible language journals. At the Sixth International Symposia on Fish Parasites in Bloemfontein, 2003, we proposed uniting all these different sources of information into a single, global gyrodactylid information resource. A prototype of this database is presented here at Fifth International Symposium for Monogenea (ISM5) in Guangzhou, 2005.
The name GyroDb
The utility of a range of host web-resources, particularly FISHBASE (http://www.fishbase.org/search.cfm), emphasized the need for comparable parasitological resources. We envisage GyroDb serving as a template for bioinformatic approaches categorizing data on other hyperdiverse monogenean genera, such as Dactylogyrus and the ancyrocephalids. Such databases will be an essential tool in the post-modern era of parasitology, combining the multidisciplinary aspects of taxonomy, systematics, experimental parasitology, ecology and genetics.
Scope of GyroDb
Like existing taxonomic databases, GyroDb allows web-based searching for taxonomic history, host range, distribution, morphology, molecular sequences and relationships. GyroDb provides direct links to web-resources and can articulate with DNA bar coding efforts. In addition, GyroDb allows non-specialists to search for images for the taxonomic identification of specimens, geographic locations and species range, primary and secondary host species, lists of archived samples, DNA primers for DNA bar coding and links to GenBank. Users can interact with GyroDb to arrive at positive, authoritative identifications of their own specimens without the need for extensive prior experience in gyrodactylid taxonomy, and will be able to deposit moderated refereed data within the database. GyroDb makes accessible a huge quantity of previously fragmented informatics and resources (archived samples and live parasite cultures in GYROArC) on Gyrodactylus and should greatly facilitate future research on the genus. Specific information included:
1) Records of the 409 potentially valid Gyrodactylus species recorded from ca. 400 host species. An additional 51 species, which represent synonyms, nomina nuda, or taxa assigned to other genera, are also listed.
2) Bibliography of all the original species descriptions, and a range of gyrodactylid references in relatively obscure or not easily accessible language journals. Translations into English of some early 20th Century manuscripts.
4) Geographic location and host data for all species.
5) Morphometric data (currently available for 123 species).
6) Type material references, deposited in national collections.
7) Details of laboratory parasite strains.
8) Links to GenBank.
9) Image database of 26,095 library of hook images (many from re-collected and re-analyzed specimens), which currently includes: 104 drawings of hamuli for 102 species; 179 marginal hook drawings for 123 species; 88 hamulus photos for 35 species; 108 marginal hook photos for 32 species; 33 SEM's of hamuli for 10 species; 50 SEM's of marginal hooks for 11 species; 15,129 multihook marginal hook comparisons for 123 species; and 10,404 multihook hamuli comparisons for 104 species. These images can be selected independently or compared a HookAlign programme.
10) Ecological data on selected species.
11) Links to other gyrodactylid webpages
Guidelines for Species Descriptions
We provide guidelines for optimized description of new taxa and deposition within the database:
The Future for Taxonomic Descriptions
Guidelines for Taxonomic Descriptions
If you find this site useful, please give due credit to the original authors for any data taken from GyroDb by use of the the main reference and by citing GyroDb itself:
Shinn, A.P., Harris, P.D., Cable, J., Bakke, T.A., Paladini, G. & Bron, J.E. Editors. 2010. GyroDb. World Wide Web electronic publication. www.gyrodb.net, version (06/2010)
Harris, P.D., Shinn, A.P., Cable, J., Bakke, T.A. & Bron, J.E. (2008) GyroDb: gyrodactylid monogeneans on the web. Trends in Parasitology, 24, 109-111.