Micromonas pusilla

Taxonomy: Eukaryota; Viridiplantae; Chlorophyta; Prasinophyceae; Mamiellales; Micromonas


The genus Micromonas is comprised of small single-celled micro-algae. Recent studies have shown that Micromonas pusilla is a major component of the pico-phytoplankton and is even capable to dominate the local pico-phytoplankton population. The photosynthetic picoeukaryote Micromonas thrives from tropical to polar marine ecosystems and belongs to an anciently diverged sister clade to land plants. The cells are 1-3 µm long, with a single posterior flagellum divided into a very short basal part and a longer hairpoint which contains only the central pair of flagellar axoneme microtubules. The cell contains a single chloroplast with a pyrenoid, while an eyespot is lacking. Cell wall absent, both the flagellum and the cell wall are naked. Its unknown whether sexual reproduction can occur or not.

In collaboration with:



Worden, A.Z., J-Lee, H., Mock, T., Rouzé, P., Simmons, M.P., Aerts, A., Allen, A., Cuvelier, M.L., Derelle, E., Everett, M.V., Foulon, E., Grimwood, J., Gundlach, H., Henrissat, B., Napoli, C., McDonald, S.M., Parker, M.S., Rombauts, S., Salamov, A., Von, P. Dasso, Badger, J., Coutinho, P.M., Demir, E., Dubchak, I., Gentemann, C., Eikrem, W., Gready, J.E., John, U., Lanier, W., Lindquist, E., Lucas, S., Mayer, K., Moreau, H., Not, F., Otillar, R., Panaud, O., Pangilinan, J., Paulsen, I., Piegu, B., Poliakov, A., Robbens, S., Schmutz, J., Toulza, E., Wyss, T., Zelensky, A., Zhou, K., Armbrust, V., Bhattacharya, D., Goodenough, U.W., Van de Peer, Y., Grigoriev, I. (2009) Green evolution and dynamic adaptations revealed by genomes of the marine picoeukaryotes Micromonas. Science 324(5924):268-72.

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