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Scientific classification
Domain: Eukaryota
(unranked): SAR
(unranked): Rhizaria
Phylum: Cercozoa
Class: Imbricatea
Family: Paulinellidae
Genus: Paulinella

P. bulloides[2]
P. chromatophora[3]
P. osloensis[2]
P. ovalis[4]
P. quinqueloba[2]
P. riveroi[2]
P. sphaeroides[2]
P. subcarinata[2]
P. subsphaerica[2]
P. trinitatensis[2]

Paulinella is a genus of about nine[5] species of freshwater amoeboids.

Its most famous member is the photosynthetic P. chromatophora which has recently (in evolutionary terms) taken on a cyanobacterium as an endosymbiont.[6] This is striking because the chloroplasts of all other known photosynthetic eukaryotes derive ultimately from a single cyanobacterium endosymbiont which was taken in probably over a billion years ago in an ancestral archaeplastidan (and subsequently adopted into other eukaryote groups, by further endosymbiosis events). The P. chromatophora symbiont was related to the Prochlorococcus and Synechococcus cyanobacteria (sister to the group consisting of the living members of those two genera).[3] Other than the symbiont, P. chromatophora is closely related to the heterotrophic P. ovalis.[7]


  1. ^ M.D. Guiry in Guiry, M.D. & Guiry, G.M. 2013. AlgaeBase. World-wide electronic publication, National University of Ireland, Galway.; searched on 4 March 2013.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h "Paulinella". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 2008-01-28. 
  3. ^ a b Birger Marin, Eva CM Nowack, Gernot Glöckner, and Michael Melkonian (2007). "The ancestor of the Paulinella chromatophore obtained a carboxysomal operon by horizontal gene transfer from a Nitrococcus-like γ-proteobacterium". BMC Evol Biol. 7: 85. PMC 1904183Freely accessible. PMID 17550603. doi:10.1186/1471-2148-7-85. 
  4. ^ "Paulinella ovalis". Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  5. ^ "Eukaryotes". Retrieved 2008-01-28. 
  6. ^ Laura Wegener Parfrey; Erika Barbero; Elyse Lasser; Micah Dunthorn; Debashish Bhattacharya; David J Patterson & Laura A Katz (December 2006). "Evaluating Support for the Current Classification of Eukaryotic Diversity". PLoS Genet. 2 (12): e220. PMC 1713255Freely accessible. PMID 17194223. doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.0020220. 
  7. ^ Patrick J. Keeling (2004). "Diversity and evolutionary history of plastids and their hosts". American Journal of Botany. 91 (10): 1481–1493. PMID 21652304. doi:10.3732/ajb.91.10.1481.