Organisms Living in and upon Paramecium: The Endosymbionts

  • Ralph Wichterman


Paramecia and certain other bacterivorous ciliates play an important role in detritus-based food webs and as links in planktonic food chains in aquatic ecosystems. The ciliates collect and ingest the diverse bacteria growing in nature formed as a result of decomposition of dead organic material. The amount of different bacteria eaten by a single Paramecium to support its growth and multiplication must be enormous. The paramecia may then be eaten not only by other protozoa such as amebas and didinia, but also by a number of different aquatic species of metazoan animals including their larval stages (W. D. Taylor, 1978, 1979, 1980; K. G. Porter et al., 1979).


Intracellular Bacterium Food Vacuole Binary Fission Symbiotic Alga Bacterial Endosymbiont 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ralph Wichterman
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Temple UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA
  2. 2.Marine Biological LaboratoryWoods HoleUSA

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