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Diatoms through the microscope.jpg
Marine diatoms
Scientific classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Chromalveolata
Phylum: Heterokontophyta
Class: Bacillariophyceae
Order: Coscinodiscophyceae

The Coscinodiscophyceae are a class of diatom.[1] They are similar to the Centrales, a traditional, paraphyletic subdivision of the heterokont algae known as diatoms.[2][3][4] The order is named for the shape of the cell walls (or valves or frustules) of centric diatoms, which are circular or ellipsoid in valve view. The valves often bear radially symmetrical ornamental patterns that can appear as dots when viewed with an optical microscope. Some also bear spines on their valves, which may either increase cell surface area and reduce sinking, or act as a deterrent to zooplankton grazers. Unlike pennate diatoms, centric diatoms never have a raphe.

In terms of cell cycle, vegetative cells are diploid and undergo mitosis during normal cell division. In sexual species, oogamous meiosis produces haploid gametes, either ova or sperm cells. These fuse to produce a zygote which expands in size to develop into an auxospore from which full-sized vegetative cells are produced.

In some taxonomy schemes,[3] the centric diatoms are known instead as order Coscinodiscophyceae, and in some schemes as order Biddulphiales.[5] However, diatom taxonomy is changing due to the development of new molecular and genetical analysis tools.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Cattolico RA, Jacobs MA, Zhou Y, et al. (2008). "Chloroplast genome sequencing analysis of Heterosigma akashiwo CCMP452 (West Atlantic) and NIES293 (West Pacific) strains". BMC Genomics. 9: 211. doi:10.1186/1471-2164-9-211. PMC 2410131free to read. PMID 18462506. 
  2. ^ Hoek, C. van den, Mann, D. G. and Jahns, H. M. (1995). Algae : An introduction to phycology, Cambridge University Press, UK.
  3. ^ a b Round, F. E. and Crawford, R. M. (1990). The Diatoms. Biology and Morphology of the Genera, Cambridge University Press, UK.
  4. ^ a b Williams, D. M., Kociolek, J. P., (2007). Pursuit of a natural classification of diatoms: History, monophyly and the rejection of paraphyletic taxa, European Journal of Phycology, 42:3, 313-319.
  5. ^ Tomas, C. R., Hasle G. R., Syvertsen, E. E., Steidinger, K. A., Tangen, K., Throndsen, J., Heimdal, B. R., (1997). Identifying Marine Phytoplankton, Academic Press.

Further reading[edit]

Tremarin, Priscila; Veiga Ludwig, Thelma Alvim; Torgan, Lezilda Carvalho (November 7, 2014). "Aulacoseira veraluciae sp. nov. (Coscinodiscophyceae, Aulacoseiraceae): a common freshwater diatom from Brazil". PHYTOTAXA. 184 (4): 208–222. doi:10.1590/S0102. 

External links[edit]