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Hatena arenicola

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Title: Hatena arenicola  
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Subject: Hacrobia, Symbiogenesis, Flagellates, Exanthemachrysis, Rhinomonas
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Hatena arenicola

Hatena arenicola
Scientific classification
Domain: Eukaryota
(unranked): Hacrobia
(unranked): Katablepharida
Genus: Hatena
Species: H. arenicola
Binomial name
Hatena arenicola
Okamoto and Inouye, 2006

Hatena arenicola is a secondary endosymbiosis, in which one organism is incorporated into another, resulting in a completely new life form.


  • Discovery 1
  • Description 2
    • The symbiont 2.1
  • See also 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5


H. arenicola was first noticed as

  • HatenaPictures of
  • Taxonomy at UniProt
  • Classification at Encyclopedia of Life

External links

  1. ^ a b Okamoto, N.; Inouye, Isao (2005). "A Secondary Symbiosis in Progress?". Science 310 (5746): 287–287.  
  2. ^ a b c Okamoto, Noriko; Inouye, Isao (2006). "Hatena arenicola gen. et sp. nov., a katablepharid undergoing probable plastid acquisition". Protist 157 (4): 401–19.  
  3. ^ Staedter, Tracy (14 October 2005). "Marine Microorganism Plays Both Host and Killer".  
  4. ^ a b Okamoto, Notiko; Inouye, Isao (2007). "Intertidal sandy beaches as a habitat where plastid acquisition processes are ongoing". In Seckbach, J. Algae and Cyanobacteria in Extreme Environments. Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer. pp. 230–236.  
  5. ^ a b c Northrup, Larry L. Barton, Diana E. (2008). Microbial ecology. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell. p. 22.  
  6. ^ Yamaguchi, Haruyo; Nakayama, Takeshi; Hongoh, Yuichi; Kawachi, Masanobu; Inouye, Isao (2013). "Molecular diversity of endosymbiotic Nephroselmis (Nephroselmidophyceae) in Hatena arenicola (Katablepharidophycota)". Journal of Plant Research 127 (2): 241–247.  


See also

The symbiotic Nephroselmis is different from free-living species. It retains its cytoplasm, nucleus and plastid, while other organelles including mitochondria, Golgi body, cytoskeleton, and endomembrane system are degraded. The plastid is also comparatively enlarged up to ten times the normal size of free-living species.[2] The enlarged plastid is compensated by reduced cytoplasmic components.[4]

The symbiont

The generic name is from a Japanese interjection roughly meaning "enigmatic"[1] or "unusual".[5]

Genetic sequencing (of 18S rRNA gene) revealed that the protist can harbour at least three distinct strains of Nephroselmis rotunda.[6]

H. arenicola cannot divide without the endosymbiont. But, unlike a fully integrated organelle, the Nephroselmis alga does not divide along with the host cell. When the host cell divides, one of the daughter cells receives the Nephroselmis cell and the other daughter returns to a heterotrophic lifestyle. Hence, the mother protist gives rise to green-coloured and white-coloured daughter cells. The latter behaves like a predator until it ingests a green alga. The alga then loses its flagella and cytoskeleton, while the Hatena, now a host, switches to photosynthetic nutrition, gains the ability to move towards light and loses its feeding apparatus. Thus, the protist exhibits an unusual life cycle of alternating autotrophy and heterotrophy.[5]

H. arenicola is a protist with one rounded cell having two flagella for locomotion. It feeds on algae using a complex feeding tube when it leads an independent life. The feeding tube, however, is replaced by an endysymbiotic alga.[5] The algal endosymbiont is a green alga from the genus Nephroselmis.[2] The endosymbiont not only acts as feeding apparatus, but also as an eye spot, by which it probably helps the protist for directional movements towards light (phototaxis).



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