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Marine Ecology Progress Series

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MEPS 465:33-52 (2012)  -  DOI:

Pigment-based chloroplast types in dinoflagellates

Manuel Zapata1,, Santiago Fraga2, Francisco Rodríguez2,*, José L. Garrido

1Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas, CSIC, c/ Eduardo Cabello 6, 36208 Vigo, Spain
2Instituto Español de Oceanografía, Subida a Radio Faro 50, 36390 Vigo, Spain
Deceased (see In Memoriam at the end of this article)

ABSTRACT: Most photosynthetic dinoflagellates contain a chloroplast with peridinin as the major carotenoid. Chloroplasts from other algal lineages have been reported, suggesting multiple plastid losses and replacements through endosymbiotic events. The pigment composition of 64 dinoflagellate species (122 strains) was analysed by using high-performance liquid chromatography. In addition to chlorophyll (chl) a, both chl c2 and divinyl protochlorophyllide occurred in chl c-containing species. Chl c1 co-occurred with chl c2 in some peridinin-containing (e.g. Gambierdiscus spp.) and fucoxanthin-containing dinoflagellates (e.g. Kryptoperidinium foliaceum). Chl c3 occurred in dinoflagellates whose plastids contained 19’-acyloxyfucoxanthins (e.g. Karenia mikimotoi). Chl b was present in green dinoflagellates (Lepidodinium chlorophorum). Based on unique combinations of chlorophylls and carotenoids, 6 pigment-based chloroplast types were defined: Type 1: peridinin/dinoxanthin/chl c2 (Alexandrium minutum); Type 2: fucoxanthin/19’-acyloxy fucoxanthins/4-keto-19’-acyloxy-fucoxanthins/gyroxanthin diesters/chl c2, c3, monogalactosyl-diacylglycerol-chl c2 (Karenia mikimotoi); Type 3: fucoxanthin/19’-acyloxyfucoxanthins/gyroxanthin diesters/chl c2, c3 (Karlodinium veneficum); Type 4: fucoxanthin/chl c1, c2 (K. foliaceum); Type 5: alloxanthin/chl c2/phycobiliproteins (Dinophysis tripos); Type 6: neoxanthin/violaxanthin/a major unknown carotenoid/chl b (Lepidodinium chlorophorum). While plastids with peridinin, and probably those with chl b, originated by secondary endosymbiosis, the other chloroplast types were obtained through tertiary endosymbiosis. Chloroplast types corresponded with evolutionary lineages within dinoflagellates. Caution must be observed when only peridinin is used for tracking photosynthetic dinoflagellates in field samples. The additional marker pigments offer oceanographers greater power for detecting dinophytes in mixed populations.

KEY WORDS: Dinophyta · Chlorophyll c pigments · Novel fucoxanthin-related pigments · Gyroxanthin diester pigments · Chemotaxonomy · Dinoflagellate chloroplast types · Plastid origin Oceanography

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Cite this article as: Zapata M, Fraga S, Rodríguez F, Garrido JL (2012) Pigment-based chloroplast types in dinoflagellates. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 465:33-52.

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