Ankistrodesmus Corda, 1838

Lectotype species: Ankistrodesmus fusiformis Corda

Original publication: Corda, J.-A.-C. (1838). Nouvelles observations microscopiques. Almanach de Carlsbad 8: 179-198, pl. II.

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Type designated in: Komárková-Legnerová, J. (1969). The systematics and ontogenesis of the genera Ankistrodesmus Corda and Monoraphidium gen. nov. In: Studies in Phycology. (Fott, B. Eds), pp. 75-144. Prague: Academia Publishing House of the Czechosolvak Academy of Sciences.

Description: Cells rarely solitary, mostly in few to many celled colonies with 4-16 (-128) cells. Mucilaginous envelopes present or absent. Cells elongate with pointed and often highly attenuate tips; sometimes straight but more often curved or twisted, 15-105 x 1-6 µm. Cells mostly in parallel bundles, in some species individual cells or bundles rotating to give spiked or stellate appearance to colony. Cell walls smooth. Cells uninucleate; chloroplast parietal and band shaped, single, but becoming multiple prior to autospore formation; pyrenoids absent. Asexual reproduction by autospore formation and colony fragmentation; 2-4-8 (-16) spores per sporangium. Spores formed in parallel in one or two series in bundles that remain more or less distinct after release. Spore release by transverse tear in central part of sporangial wall; wall fragments discarded or dissolving. Flagellated stages and sexual reproduction unknown.

Information contributed by: D.J. Garbary & F. Hindák. The most recent alteration to this page was made on 2021-10-26 by M.D. Guiry.

Taxonomic status: This name is of an entity that is currently accepted taxonomically.

Gender: This genus name is currently treated as masculine.

Most recent taxonomic treatment adopted: John, D.M. & Tsarenko, P.M. (2002). Order Chlorococcales. In: The Freshwater Algal Flora of the British Isles. An identification guide to freshwater and terrestrial algae. (John, D.M., Whitton, B.A. & Brook, A.J. Eds), pp. 327-409. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Comments: Ankistrodesmus species are planktonic and cosmopolitan in freshwater lakes or associated with littoral vegetation; most species in slightly acidic non-polluted waters. Most species in temperate waters, some species (e.g. A. bernardii) restricted to tropical environments. Comparative physiology and biochemistry of numerous strains extensively studied by Kessler and collaborators. Growth of Ankistrodesmus braunii sensitive to similar levels of the herbicide, simazine, as filamentous, mat-forming species. Selenastrum and Ankistrodesmus closely related with some authors considering them synonymous; the key difference being the degree of cell curvature with Ankistrodesmus being more or less straight or slightly curved and Selenastrum being strongly curved. Some authors suggest that a pyrenoid may be present. Species distinguished mostly by details of cell size and shape.

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Some of the descriptions included in AlgaeBase were originally from the unpublished Encyclopedia of Algal Genera, organised in the 1990s by Dr Bruce Parker on behalf of the Phycological Society of America (PSA) and intended to be published in CD format. These AlgaeBase descriptions are now being continually updated, and each current contributor is identified above. The PSA and AlgaeBase warmly acknowledge the generosity of all past and present contributors and particularly the work of Dr Parker.

Descriptions of chrysophyte genera were subsequently published in J. Kristiansen & H.R. Preisig (eds.). 2001. Encyclopedia of Chrysophyte Genera. Bibliotheca Phycologica 110: 1-260.

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M.D. Guiry in Guiry, M.D. & Guiry, G.M. 26 October 2021. AlgaeBase. World-wide electronic publication, National University of Ireland, Galway.; searched on 27 May 2024

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