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Chapter 30

BIO SCI 94 Chapter Notes - Chapter 30: Alveolate, Nuclear Membrane, Heterokont

Biological Sciences
Course Code
Nancy Burley

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Chapter 30 - Protists:
I. What distinguishes eukaryotes and bacteria/archaea?
A. Eukaryotes are larger, have more organelles, and has a cytoskeleton
B. Synapomorphy of eukaryotes is nuclear envelope
C. Eukaryotes are multicellular
D. Bacteria and archaea reproduce by fission; eukaryotes reproduce asexually by
mitosis and cell division
E. Eukaryotes usually undergo meiosis and reproduce sexually
II. Protists - all eukaryotes that are not land plants, fungi, or animals
A. They are a paraphyletic group - they represent some, but not all, of the
descendants of a single common ancestor (eukaryotes)
B. Do not have a synapomorphy since they are not a monophyletic group
C. Common feature: they tend to live in environments where they are surrounded by
water most of the time (e.g. wet soils and aquatic habitats)
III. Protist impact on human health and welfare
A. For example, one of the 3 major diseases in the world, malaria, is caused by a
protist, specifically by the eukaryotic lineage Alveolata.
B. Five species of the protist Plasmodium are capable of parasitizing humans
1. Plasmodium cells enter the bloodstream after a mosquito bite
2. Infects liver cells, then the red blood cells → multiply asexually
3. Mosquito ends up consuming these parasite cells in the blood they eat
4. Form zygote in the mosquito that allows them to bypass human immune
C. “Bloom” - unicellular species experiences rapid population growth and reaches
high densities in an aquatic environment
1. Dinoflagellates - synthesize toxins to protect themselves, but at the same
time, they discolor seawater and harm shellfish → harms humans who eat
IV. Ecological importance of protists
A. Primary producers - species that produce chemical energy by transforming
sunlight into chemical energy
B. Plankton - produces sugar and organic compounds in marine environments
C. Food chain - nutritional relationships among organisms and how chemical energy
flows within ecosystems
D. Protists are usually at the base of aquatic food chains
E. In the global carbon cycle, plankton can become sedimentary rocks or
petroleum and in turn cause more oxygen in marine environments rather than the
V. Seven major groups/lineages of eukaryotes
A. Amoebozoa - no cell walls and form large lobes
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