8th International Nannoplankton Association Conference


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Ian Probert, Markus Geisen, Hanno Kinkel, Jeremy R. Young:
Culture studies of Algirosphaera robusta

The coccolithophorid species, Algirosphaera robusta, was recently isolated from sea-water samples collected during the MATER Cruise in the Alboran Sea (October, 1999). This is a remarkable result since, at least according to the literature, this is the first ever isolation not only of this species but of any member of the family Rhabdosphaeraceae. Indeed, culture studies of oceanic coccolithophorids have predominantly been of species especially of the Coccolithaceae and Noelaerhabdaceae. Hence, this species can provide insights into previously poorly-known aspects of the biodiversity of coccolithophorids. We are undertaking a detailed study of the species using TEM study of cell fine-structure and coccolith formation, combined with LM and SEM study of coccolith morphology and ultrastructure. The species is proving to have many unusual characteristics, especially of coccolith formation and ultrastructure, as will be described. Molecular genetic and biomarker studies are also in hand, and preliminary results may be available.

Figure 1: TEM micrograph of a cell of Algirosphaera with four coccoliths


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 [Division of Micropalaeontology] [Department of Geosciences] [Bremen University]

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