1. Structure
    - amount of cells
    - nuclei
    - qualities
    - flagella
    - feeding
    • All are unicellular
    • -          Store food as starch
    • Are uninucleated

    Have permanently condensed nuclei (mesokaryotic)

    • Some are bioluminescent
    • Grooves around it for the flagella
    • Lack a photosynthetic apparatus; absorb organic compounds; feed from a peduncle
    • In unfavorable conditions, they produce nonmotile cysts
    • Some are photosynthetic; others are heterotrophic
  2. Mobility
    • Roll around
    • Tensile like flagella
  3. Location
    Mostly marine; some freshwater; warmer is preferred, but can live in cold
  4. Cell Wall
    • -          Some don’t have a cell wall but a thin structure called the periplast
    • -          Others have a cell wall that is to the inside of the membrane; armored; it has grooves that the flagella sit in
  5. Pigments
    Chlorophylls a and c and several carotenoids (peridinin)
  6. Reproduction
    • Asexual
    • During mitosis, the nuclear membrane persists; the chromosomes attach to it as cytoplasmic channels split the cell
    • Cell wall gets donated to two daughters, who must regenerate the other half
    • Sexual reproduction is rare
  7. Problems
    Problems:-  red tide

    Diarrhetic Shellfish poisoning: caused by diophysis spp; okadaic acid 

    Neurotoxic shellfish poisoning: caused by brevetoxin from Gymnodinium 

    Paralytic shellfish poisoning: caused by alexandrium, gymnodinium, and pyrodium- 12-18 different neurotoxin

    Ciguatera Fish Poisoning: gambierdiscus toxicus; cugatoxin and maitotoxin 

    Release of endo- and exotoxins

    Responsible for the photosynthetic protductivity that makes possible the growth of coral reefs
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