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Plasmodium vivax 01.png
A mature Plasmodium vivax trophozoite
Scientific classification
Domain: Eukarya
Kingdom: Chromalveolata
Superphylum: Alveolata
Phylum: Apicomplexa
Class: Aconoidasida
Order: Haemospororida
Family: Plasmodiidae

The Plasmodiidae are a family of apicomplexan parasites, including the type genus Plasmodium, which is responsible for malaria. This genus was created in 1903 by Mesnil. They are one of the four families in the order Haemospororida.

Diagnostic criteria[edit]

The diagnostic criteria of the Plasmodiidae are:


The order has four families: the Garniidae, the Haemoproteidae, the Leucocytozoidae and the Plasmodiidae.

The Haemoproteidae and the Plasmodiidae both produce pigment and these have been placed in the order Laveraniina.

Neither the Haemoproteidae or the Leucocytozoidae have an asexual cycle in the peripheral blood.

The Garniidae do not produce pigment but do have an asexual cycle in the blood. They appear to be the earliest diverging clade in this group.

Plasmodiidae contains the following genera:


The genus Mesnilium is the only taxon that infects fish. The genus has a single species and has been reported only once. It may be that this genus has been mistakenly placed in this genus. DNA studies are likely to be needed to clarify this point.