Lingulodinium polyedrum

Form and Function


Lingulodinium polyedrum has a flagellum which can allow it to move itself throughout its marine environment. Even though these organisms are motile, the oceans strong current and waves breaking upon shore can overcome these tiny organisms. Increased stimulation, such as waves breaking or the movement of a ship through the water, can create a unique reaction from Lingulodinium polyedrum. These organisms react to stimuli through bioluminescence. The scintillon is the organelle within Lingulodinium polyedrum that acts as the “flashing unit” of the cell (Desa and Hastings, 1968). These organisms are also known to have circadian cycles for many of their processes (Schmitter, 1971). Many dinoflagellates, including Lingulodinium polyedrum, are photosynthetic which allows them to function in its environment and produce nutrients on a light to dark pattern.




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