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Vampyrella lateritia.jpg
Vampyrella lateritia
Scientific classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Rhizaria
Phylum: Cercozoa
Order: Aconchulinida
Family: Vampyrellidae
Zopf, 1885

The Vampyrellidae are a group of cercozoans[1] with filose pseudopods and lacking shells. Vampyrella is typical of the group, which also contains genera such as Platyreta and Arachnula.[2]

The term "Aconchulinida" is sometimes used for vampyrellid.[2] It has been described as an order.[3]


When free-floating, the cell is spherical and around 30 μm across, with long radially directed filose pseudopods as well as distinctive shorter club-shaped ones, so that it resembles a heliozoan. Moving, the cell stretches out and takes a more typical amoeboid form, with an obvious distinction between the clear periphery and pseudopods and the greenish interior. In this form it finds its way into algae cells and feeds on their interiors. A few other vampyrellids are parasitic on fungi. As such, these vampyrellids can be an important control of parasitic rust fungus of wheat and other crops.

Vampyrellids characteristically have mitochondria with tubular cristae. Together with the nucleariids they include the majority of the naked filose amoebae. They have been considered possible members of the Cercozoa, but at present their relationship to other protists is uncertain.


  1. ^ "Vampyrellidae". Retrieved 2009-03-08. 
  2. ^ a b David Bass, Ema E.-Y. Chao, Sergey Nikolaev, Akinori Yabuki, Ken-ichiro Ishida, Cédric Berney, Ursula Pakzad, Claudia Wylezich & Thomas Cavalier-Smith (2009). "Phylogeny of novel naked filose and reticulose Cercozoa: Granofilosea cl. n. and Proteomyxidea revised". Protist 160 (1): 75–109. doi:10.1016/j.protis.2008.07.002. PMID 18952499. 
  3. ^ James L. Sinclair & William C. Ghiorse (1987). "Distribution of Protozoa in subsurface sediments of a pristine groundwater study site in Oklahoma". Applied and Environmental Microbiology 53 (5): 1157–1163. PMC 203824. PMID 16347342. 

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