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The photo shows small, white shells that look like clamshells, and shell fragments. Each cell is about 0.25 mm across.
These shells from foraminifera sank to the sea floor. (credit: Deep East 2001, NOAA/OER)

Radiolarians

A second subtype of Rhizaria, the radiolarians, exhibit intricate exteriors of glassy silica with radial or bilateral symmetry ( [link] ). Needle-like pseudopods supported by microtubules radiate outward from the cell bodies of these protists and function to catch food particles. The shells of dead radiolarians sink to the ocean floor, where they may accumulate in 100 meter-thick depths. Preserved, sedimented radiolarians are very common in the fossil record.

The micrograph shows a tear drop-shaped white structure reminiscent of a shell. The structure is hollow and perfused with circular holes.
This fossilized radiolarian shell was imaged using a scanning electron microscope. (credit: modification of work by Hannes Grobe, Alfred Wegener Institute; scale-bar data from Matt Russell)

Archaeplastida

Red algae and green algae are included in the supergroup Archaeplastida. It was from a common ancestor of these protists that the land plants evolved, since their closest relatives are found in this group. Molecular evidence supports that all Archaeplastida are descendents of an endosymbiotic relationship between a heterotrophic protist and a cyanobacterium. The red and green algae include unicellular, multicellular, and colonial forms.

Red algae

Red algae, or rhodophytes, are primarily multicellular, lack flagella, and range in size from microscopic, unicellular protists to large, multicellular forms grouped into the informal seaweed category. The red algae life cycle is an alternation of generations. Some species of red algae contain phycoerythrins, photosynthetic accessory pigments that are red in color and outcompete the green tint of chlorophyll, making these species appear as varying shades of red. Other protists classified as red algae lack phycoerythrins and are parasites. Red algae are common in tropical waters where they have been detected at depths of 260 meters. Other red algae exist in terrestrial or freshwater environments.

Green algae: chlorophytes and charophytes

The most abundant group of algae is the green algae. The green algae exhibit similar features to the land plants, particularly in terms of chloroplast structure. That this group of protists shared a relatively recent common ancestor with land plants is well supported. The green algae are subdivided into the chlorophytes and the charophytes. The charophytes are the closest living relatives to land plants and resemble them in morphology and reproductive strategies. Charophytes are common in wet habitats, and their presence often signals a healthy ecosystem.

The chlorophytes exhibit great diversity of form and function. Chlorophytes primarily inhabit freshwater and damp soil, and are a common component of plankton. Chlamydomonas is a simple, unicellular chlorophyte with a pear-shaped morphology and two opposing, anterior flagella that guide this protist toward light sensed by its eyespot. More complex chlorophyte species exhibit haploid gametes and spores that resemble Chlamydomonas .

The chlorophyte Volvox is one of only a few examples of a colonial organism, which behaves in some ways like a collection of individual cells, but in other ways like the specialized cells of a multicellular organism ( [link] ). Volvox colonies contain 500 to 60,000 cells, each with two flagella, contained within a hollow, spherical matrix composed of a gelatinous glycoprotein secretion. Individual Volvox cells move in a coordinated fashion and are interconnected by cytoplasmic bridges. Only a few of the cells reproduce to create daughter colonies, an example of basic cell specialization in this organism.

Questions & Answers

what are prokaryotes
Jacob Reply
Prokaryotes are cells with well defined nucleus or cells with membranes example; Bacteria,Nostoc etc.
Emmanuel
what is bilateral symmetry
Mameibi Reply
Explain kingdom of fungi
HARUNA Reply
what are the nutritional requirement of organism
Patience Reply
which part of the alimentary canal were these cross section taken
Getrude Reply
what is alimentary canal were these cross section taken
Getrude
what is matter
Gifty Reply
from which part of the alimentary canal were these cross section taken fig 2.1 fig 2.2 b,c
Getrude Reply
explain the role played by b in the alimentary canal
Getrude
what is biology
Sunday Reply
what is mitosis
David Reply
structure of a kidney
Idriss Reply
explain sexual reproduction of a named flower taking account of pollination, fertilization and the change to seed and fruit.
Chinyi Reply
The study of all life or living matterThe living organisms of a particular region.
Oyewale Reply
what is ology
Green Reply
in which of the following stages of the cell cycle are chromosomes pulled apart to opposite poles of the cell
Amie Reply
Anaphase
Jonah
what is digestive system
Cyprain Reply
Digestive system is a system in mammals associated with the breaking down or assimilation of food substances into simple soluble and diffusable substances by mechanical and chemical means
Emmanuel
true
Qwabhenah

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Source:  OpenStax, Biology. OpenStax CNX. Feb 29, 2016 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11448/1.10
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