An Amoeba/Zooxanthellae Consortium as a Model System for Animal/Algal Symbiosis
Annual rept. Jul 1988-1989
CALIFORNIA UNIV SANTA BARBARA MARINE SCIENCE INST
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The interactions between the marine amoeba Trichosphaerium Am-I-7 and a variety of symbiotic and non-symbiotic dinoflagellates is being studied. The amoeba may eat specific available algae, ignore some species, and phagocytose other species but not digest them. Non symbiotic dinoflagellates were quickly digested. Symbiotic dinoflagellates especially of the genus Symbiodinium, were either avoided or phagocytosed to different extents but were not digested. Of the symbiotic dinoflagellates Symbiodinium species 8 was especially interesting. The amoebae packed themselves with the alga and maintained live algae in perialgal vacuoles. The amoeba is selective both in its uptake of particles and in its ability to retain specific algae undigested. About 10 of the photosynthetic metabolites of the algae were translocated, and incorporated in amoebal cytoplasm. The types of amoebal vacuoles were identified by differential binding of fluorescent lectins. Digestive food vacuoles bound differentially to RCA120. Keywords Lectins Translocation.