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Description of Asteromonas

Cells radially symmetrical, rarely slightly asymmetrical or flattened; spindle shaped, ellipsoidal, inversely ovoid or conical; papilla prominent; cell surface with longitudinal keel-like ridges, sometimes wing-shaped; strip-like cell surface coat present; 2 equal flagella; chloroplast single, cup-shaped extending into the longitudinal ridges, sometimes perforated; pyrenoid basal or slightly lateral, starch shell limited to convex outer surface of the pyrenoid; eyespot present; nucleus centrally located; contractile vacuoles absent; asexual reproduction by longitudinal division of vegetative flagellate cells beginning at the cell apex; cysts spherical, thick-walled, surface rugose; sexual reproduction not observed in detail; habitat euryhaline in saltpans, brine lakes and salt water ditches near the sea, sometimes in brackish water.

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