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Protist. 2010 Apr;161(2):304-36. doi: 10.1016/j.protis.2009.10.002. Epub 2009 Dec 11.

Molecular phylogeny and classification of the Mamiellophyceae class. nov. (Chlorophyta) based on sequence comparisons of the nuclear- and plastid-encoded rRNA operons.

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Biowissenschaftliches Zentrum, Botanisches Institut, Lehrstuhl I, Universität zu Köln, Otto-Fischer-Str. 6, 50674 Köln, Germany.


Molecular phylogenetic analyses of the Mamiellophyceae classis nova, a ubiquitous group of largely picoplanktonic green algae comprising scaly and non-scaly prasinophyte unicells, were performed using single and concatenated gene sequence comparisons of the nuclear- and plastid-encoded rRNA operons. The study resolved all major clades within the class, identified molecular signature sequences for most clades through an exhaustive search for non-homoplasious synapomorphies [Marin et al. (2003): Protist 154: 99-145] and incorporated these signatures into the diagnoses of two novel orders, Monomastigales ord nov., Dolichomastigales ord. nov., and four novel families, Monomastigaceae fam. nov., Dolichomastigaceae fam. nov., Crustomastigaceae fam. nov., and Bathycoccaceae fam. nov., within a revised classification of the class. A database search for the presence of environmental rDNA sequences in the Monomastigales and Dolichomastigales identified an unexpectedly large genetic diversity of Monomastigales confined to freshwater, a novel clade (Dolicho_B) in the Dolichomastigaceae from deep sea sediments and a novel freshwater clade in the Crustomastigaceae. The Mamiellophyceae represent one of the ecologically most successful groups of eukaryotic, photosynthetic picoplankters in marine and likely also freshwater environments.

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