The Prasinophyceae is a large, poly- or paraphyletic group of single-celled, flagellate green algae hypothesized to have diverged early in chlorophyte phylogeny (Lewis and McCourt, 2004). The group consists of four (Nakayama et al., 1998) or six to seven (Teyssedre, 2006) distinct clades, one of which is the Pyramimonadales. The life history of several species of Pyramimonadales includes a unique non-motile stage characterized by the formation of organic-walled cyst-like structures termed phycomata (sing. phycoma). The alga remains metabolically active within the phycoma and undergoes

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