Labyrinthulomycetes are mostly fungus-like heterotrophic protists that absorb nutrients in an osmotrophic or phagotrophic manner. Members of order Labyrinthulida produce unique membrane-bound ectoplasmic networks for movement and feeding. Among the various types of labyrinthulids' food substrates, diatoms play an important role due to their ubiquitous distribution and abundant biomass. We isolated and cultivated new diatom consuming Labyrinthulida strains from shallow coastal marine sediments. We described Labyrinthula diatomea n. sp. that differs from all known labyrinthulids in both molecular and morphological features. We provided strain delimitation within the genus Labyrinthula based on ITS sequences via haplotype network construction and compared it with previous phylogenetic surveys.
Keywords: ITS haplogroups; Stramenopila; rDNA phylogeny.
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