Life-cycle, ultrastructure, and phylogeny of Parvilucifera corolla sp. nov. (Alveolata, Perkinsozoa), a parasitoid of dinoflagellates
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AuthorsReñé, A. (Albert); Alacid, E. (Elisabet); Figueroa, R.I. (Rosa Isabel); Rodríguez, F. (Francisco); Garcés, E. (Esther)
Harmful Algal Blooms
Recent studies of marine protists have revealed parasites to be key components of marine communities. Here we describe a new species of the parasitoid genus Parvilucifera that was observed infecting the dinoflagellate Durinskia baltica in salt marshes of the Catalan coast (NW Mediterranean). In parallel, the same species was detected after the incubation of seawater from the Canary Islands (Lanzarote, NE Atlantic). The successful isolation of strains from both localities allowed description of the life cycle, ultrastructure, and phylogeny of the species. Its infection mechanism consists of a free-living zoospore that penetrates a dinoflagellate cell. The resulting trophont gradually degrades the dinoflagellate cytoplasm while growing in size. Once the host is consumed, schizogony of the parasitoid yields a sporocyte. After cytokinesis is complete, the newly formed zoospores are released into the environment and are ready to infect new host cells. A distinguishing feature of the species ...