Biomyxa (buy-o-mix-a) is a genus of poorly known amoebae. Some think that all organisms with branching pseudopodia should be assigned to the unshelled (athalamid) granuloreticulosea. However, it is quite clear that many different kinds of organisms have adopted fine branching pseudopodia - such as Massisteria known to be a cercomonad, vampyrellids such as Arachnula, nucleariid filose amoebae and so on. In Biomyxa the pseudopodia are stiffened internally, they branch but rarely join back together. the pseudopodial system is very dynamic, with stiff elements being formed quickly and breaking down quickly - with the cells almost crawling across the substrate. Phase contrast. This picture was taken by David Patterson of material from Limulus-ridden sediments at Plum Island (Massachusetts USA) in spring and summer, 2001. Image copyright: D. J. Patterson, image used under license to MBL (micro*scope).
download as pdf file
download large file
From the collection
Plum Island, Massachusetts coast, USA
|Description of Biomyxa: Amoeboid organism with stiffened and branching pseudopodia. Cytoplasm most usually forming a single large mass. Pseudopodia with granules, extending and moving actively. Up to 500 µm in size. Two species, one originally described from freshwater the other coprophilic, but also reported from marine sites. Some reports are of organisms similar to other amoebae (e.g. Arachnula, Gymnophrydium) and the identity of this genus needs clarification. Held by some to be related to the Granuloreticulosea. Type species, Biomyxa vagans Leidy 1879. |