Novel combination coccospheres from Helicosphaera spp indicate complex relationships between species

Sturm, D; Langer, G; Wheeler, G. 2022 Novel combination coccospheres from Helicosphaera spp indicate complex relationships between species. Journal of Plankton Research, fbac044. https://doi.org/10.1093/plankt/fbac044

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Abstract/Summary

Coccolithophores play an important role in global biogeochemical cycling, but many aspects of their ecology remain poorly understood, including their heteromorphic haplo-diplontic life cycle. The presence of combination coccospheres in environmental samples, which represent a transition between the lightly calcified haploid (HOL) and heavily calcified diploid (HET) life phases, provides crucial evidence linking the two life cycle phases of a particular species. Here, we describe combination coccospheres from the Southern Ocean that show a novel association between Helicosphaera hyalina (HET) and Helicosphaera HOL catilliferus type. The ability of Helicosphaera HET and HOL morphospecies to form multiple different combinations indicates a substantial complexity in the relationships between life cycle phases in this group. The findings suggest recent divergence within the Helicosphaera lineage may have resulted in significant inter- and intra-specific variability, with cryptic speciation in one or both life cycle phases contributing to their ability to form multiple HET/HOL associations.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Additional Keywords: Coccolithophores, Life-cycle, Combination-coccosphere, Haplo-diplontic, Southern Ocean, Speciation, Haptophyta
Subjects: Aquaculture
Biology
Ecology and Environment
Marine Sciences
Divisions: Marine Biological Association of the UK > Continuous Plankton Recorder
Depositing User: Tamar Atkinson
Date made live: 01 Sep 2022 11:06
Last Modified: 01 Sep 2022 11:06
URI: http://plymsea.ac.uk/id/eprint/9784

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