Morphology of the toxin-producing diatom ...

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Title Morphology of the toxin-producing diatom Nitzschia-pungens Grunow forma multiseries Hasle
Author(s) D. J. Macphee, Louis A. Hanic, D. L. Friesen, David E. Sims
Journal Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences
Date 1992
Volume 49
Issue 2
Start page 303
End page 311
Abstract The toxin-producing diatom Nitzschia pungens Grunow forma multiseries Hasle from three toxic blooms in two Prince Edward Island estuaries, spanning 1987-89, was studied using light and electron microscopy. Cell ultrastructure of N. pungens is, in general, similar to that of other species of Nitzschia and other diatoms. Important features include prominent peripheral, polarized nucleoli (numbering one or two) and imperforate poroids, present on inner valves and girdle bands. Cell division is usually synchronous for all cells in a filament with respect to polarity and time. Postdivisional elongation of the filament appears to involve a "slide-by" process whereby sibling cells slide by each other along their opposed valve faces and then stop, becoming fused by their overlapping tips. The raphe is probably involved in this, as well as in filament and cell motility. Observations of particle motion along the cell raphe suggest the existence of a motility apparatus such as microcilia which would facilitate locomotion, intercellular coordination, and the postdivisional slide-by process. No bacteria or other organisms were observed associated with field samples of toxic N. pungens f. multiseries. This supports a view that domoic acid production is autonomous.

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