Formation and early development of tetraspores of Polysiphonia urceolata (Rhodomelaceae, Rhodophyta)
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Polysiphonia urceolata is one type of potential commercial red seaweeds used for breeding and cultivation, because of its significant biochemical and biomedical application. However, the information of breeding and seedling incubation for cultivation is limited, especially the early development. In this study, tetrasporohyte and gametophyte of P. urceolata were taken as the study materials in Huiquan Bay, Qingdao, China. The cleaned and sterilized tetrasporophytes and gametophytes were pre-cultured in sterilized seawater, then nurtured at 18°C, 25 μmol photons m−2 s−1 in 12:12 h (light:dark) photoperiod. Continuous observation under microscope showed that the early development consists of bipolar division stage and seedling stage. In the division stage, tetraspores germinate into bipolar sporelings that further differentiate into a colorless rhizoidal portion and a lightly pigmented upright shoot. The lightly pigmented rhizoidal cell develops to a rhizoid and the larger pigmented cell transforms to an erect axis. In the seedling stage, several quasi-protuberances appear on the erect axis and form juvenile seedlings. The results demonstrate the culture of P. urceolata from tetraspores under laboratory conditions.