Xylocythere sarrazinae, a new cytherurid ostracod (Crustacea) from a hydrothermal vent field on the Juan de Fuca Ridge, northeast Pacific Ocean, and its phylogenetic position within Cytheroidea

  • Hayato TanakaEmail author
  • Yann Lelièvre
  • Moriaki Yasuhara
Original Paper


This paper described Xylocythere sarrazinae sp. nov. (Ostracoda: Cytheroidea: Cytheruridae: Eucytherurinae), collected at 2196 m depth from the Grotto hydrothermal edifice (Main Endeavor Field, Juan de Fuca Ridge) in the northeastern Pacific Ocean. This new species was found living in association with Ridgeia piscesae tubeworm assemblages. It is the second representative of Xylocythere described from such vents. Xylocythere sarrazinae sp. nov. is easily distinguished from the seven described species of Xylocythere by the surface ornamentations of its carapace, with the most similar species to it being Xylocythere pointillissima Maddocks & Steineck, 1987. However, Xylocythere sarrazinae sp. nov can be distinguished from X. pointillissima based on the following characters: having a subsquare basal capsule outline, a spatulate upper ramus, a flattened distal lobe of the male copulatory organ, and having 15 maxillula branchial plate setae. We found that one specimen of this new species had multiple spherical objects associated with the internal openings of its pore clusters. These objects were quite similar in shape to that of chemoautotrophic bacteria, which were previously reported from the outer surfaces of pore clusters in other Xylocythere species. Finally, we provided a preliminary phylogenetic analysis of this new species based on 18S rRNA gene sequences to determine the phylogenetic position of the subfamily Eucytherurinae within the superfamily Cytheroidea. This analysis revealed that Xylocythere (Eucytherurinae) may be the most ancestral lineage among the Cytheruridae and identified paraphyletic relationships among the three subfamilies within Cytheruridae. This result supported certain previous studies’ conclusions based on morphology and fossil records.


Chemosynthetic habitat Crustacea Eucytherurinae Meiofauna Pore clusters 



The authors thank the captain and crew of the R/V Thomas G. Thompson and the staff of Ocean Networks Canada and ROV’s Jason pilots during the “Ocean Networks Canada Expedition 2015: Wiring the Abyss” cruise. We thank also Kim Juniper and the government of Canada in obtaining of works permit to study in Canadian waters (XR281, 2015). We are also grateful to Thomas Day for his assistance in sample sorting and Akira Tsukagoshi for providing the research facilities for taxonomy and molecular work. This research was part of Yann Lelièvre PhD thesis supervised by Legendre, P. (Université de Montréal) as well as Mariolaine Matabos and Jozée Sarrazin (Université de Bretagne Occidentale/Ifremer).


This study was funded by the grants from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science for Young Scientists (No. 263700) (to HT), the Research Grants Council of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China (project codes: HKU 17306014, HKU 17311316) (to MY), Ifremer internal funds and a fellowship from the “Laboratoire d’Excellence” LabexMER (ANR-10-LABX-19) (to YL) and NSERC research grant to Pierre Legendre.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All applicable international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed by the authors.

Sampling and field studies

All necessary permits for sampling and observational field studies have been obtained by the authors from the competent authorities and are mentioned in the acknowledgements.

Data availability statement

Sequence data of Xylocythere sarrazinae sp. nov. that support the findings of this study have been deposited in GenBank with the accession codes LC380020 (


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Copyright information

© Senckenberg Gesellschaft für Naturforschung 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Tokyo Sea Life ParkTokyoJapan
  2. 2.Ifremer Centre de Bretagne, REM/EEP, Laboratoire Environnement ProfondPlouzaneFrance
  3. 3.Département de Sciences BiologiquesUniversité de MontréalMontrealCanada
  4. 4.School of Biological Sciences and Swire Institute of Marine ScienceThe University of Hong KongHong KongChina

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