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PhlebKeyTool: an interactive identification key for Phlebotomine sandflies

Phlebotomus perniciosus IRD-N.Rahola

PhlebKeyTool is a Phlebotomine sandflies identification tool that addresses comprehensively the 84 species and subspecies of Phlebotomine sandflies in Europe, the Mediterranean area, Middle-East, the Arabian Peninsula and Iran.

Identification of specimens is a crucial point for any study in biology: inventory of biodiversity, phylogenetic studies, ecology, quantification of pathogen transmission, etc. During most of the last two centuries printed dichotomous keys have been the main tool for practicalidentification. 

The knowledge representation and computing capabilities available nowadays and the common use of microcomputers suddenly opened up new perspectives. Biologists began to produce
computer-aided-identification systemsin the late 1960s. 

The main difference between classical keys and these systemsis the replacement of fixed sequences of questions on a printed key by adynamic free multi-access system including images and documents to help theuser.


PhlebKeyTool (like the previous MosKeyTool devoted to mosquitoes) usesXper2 that is a free software dedicated to taxonomic descriptions andcomputer-aided-identification. It includes an editor to edit taxonomicstandardized descriptions and several functionalities to identify specimens, tocompare and compute morphological dissimilarities, to import or export datafrom/to other formats etc.

PhlebKeyTool is primarily intended to theidentification of specimen, but it may be used for training purpose as well.

PhlebKeyTool-Version 1 has been developed within theMediLabSecure project by a consortium of specialists of many countriescoordinated by
Dr Ozge Erisoz and Pr. Bulent Alten’s lab in Hacettepe Univ,Ankara.

It is downloadable here:

To download Phlebkeytool presentations to see how it works, it's here


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