Photoreception and Photomovements in Blepharisma japonicum

  • Francesco Ghetti
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSA, volume 211)


From the beginning of the century, the red heterotrichous ciliate Blepharisma has been an interesting subject of studies in the field of photobiology because of its endogenous pigment blepharismin. In fact, if Blepharisma is exposed to relatively strong light, in the presence of oxygen, blepharismin acts as a strong photosensitizer and readily causes its death. This almost unique behavior of an organism producing a pigment that photosensitizes not only its predators but the organism itself, is a puzzle for proto-zooloeists studying evolutionary processes.


Action Spectrum Fluence Rate Anabaena Variabilis Negative Phototaxis Singlet Molecular Oxygen 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Francesco Ghetti
    • 1
  1. 1.C.N.R. Istituto di BiofisicaPisaItaly

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