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Volvox carteri

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Taxonomy

Taxonomic lineage

cellular organisms - Eukaryota - Viridiplantae - Chlorophyta - Chlorophyceae - Chlamydomonadales - Volvocaceae - Volvox - Volvox carteri

Phylogeny

The family Volvocaceae contains several genera of green flagellated algae that are intermediate in size and complexity between unicellular Chlamydomonas and Volvox. Molecular phylogenetic analysis indicates that the family is monophyletic, and shares common ancestor with Chlamydomonas that existed about 50-200 million years ago. Thus, these algae provide great opportunity to analyze evolutionary pathway leading from unicellularity to multicellularity with complete division of labor.

Genomes of Chlamydomonas and Volvox are remarkably similar: both genomes contain ~14,500 protein-coding genes, and the Volvox genome is slightly larger, 138-118 megabases, mostly because of its greater transposon/repetitive DNA content.

Over a relatively short period of time Volvox evolved:


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Brief facts

Volvox asexual reproduction


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Life cycle

Volvox has 2 modes of reproduction: sexual and asexual.

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Volvox reproduction

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References

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