Send to

Choose Destination
Protist. 2013 Mar;164(2):218-36. doi: 10.1016/j.protis.2012.09.001. Epub 2012 Oct 22.

An analysis of dinoflagellate metabolism using EST data.

Author information

Sansom Institute for Health Research, University of South Australia, North Terrace, Adelaide, SA 5000, Australia.


The dinoflagellates are an important group of eukaryotic, single celled algae. They are the sister group of the Apicomplexa, a group of intracellular parasites and photosynthetic algae including the malaria parasite Plasmodium. Many apicomplexan mitochondria have a number of unusual features, including the lack of a pyruvate dehydrogenase and the existence of a branched TCA cycle. Here, we analyse dinoflagellate EST (expressed sequence tag) data to determine whether these features are apicomplexan-specific, or if they are more widespread. We show that dinoflagellates have replaced a key subunit (E1) of pyruvate dehydrogenase with a subunit of bacterial origin and that transcripts encoding many of the proteins that are essential in a conventional ATP synthase/Complex V are absent, as is the case in Apicomplexa. There is a pathway for synthesis of starch or glycogen as a storage carbohydrate. Transcripts encoding isocitrate lyase and malate synthase are present, consistent with ultrastructural reports of a glyoxysome. Finally, evidence for a conventional haem biosynthesis pathway is found, in contrast to the Apicomplexa, Chromera and early branching dinoflagellates (Perkinsus, Oxyrrhis).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center