Expressed sequence tag (EST) analysis of the diploid and triploid Paragonimus westermani genes was done to have a rapid and informative outlook of the gene-expression profiles of the parasites. Totals of 506 and 505 ESTs were generated from the diploid and triploid P. westermani cDNA libraries. Based on the BLASTx search results of the diploid P. westermani ESTs, 308 (60.9%) matched significantly with formerly identified genes and 198 (39.1%) showed no significant homology in the GenBank database. A similar homology pattern was shown from the triploid EST BLASTx search results with 346 (68.5%) sharing homology with previously identified genes and 159 (31.5%) showing no significant homology. The EST data from both libraries were analyzed and grouped into 9 categories. Comparison of the 2 EST pools revealed high similarities among the categories of the significantly matched genes. Single genes matched repeatedly were also observed in the 2 EST data. Some genes were found that are not yet characterized in P. westermani; these genes were matched by both the diploid and triploid ESTs. Further study of these genes may provide us with more understanding on the parasite's biology and their specific functions in the 2 strains.

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