Alga of the Year

to current Alga of the Year

Background

Since 2007, the Phycology Section chooses an alga of the year, which is introduced to the public audience. Algae are the most important oxygen producers on our planet. They consume the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide. Diatoms alone delivers 25 % of the world's terrestrial and aquatic primary production. Diatoms therefore produce every fourth oxygen molecule on earth. This is not surprising since two thirds of our planet is covered by oceans and seas. Their light-flooded layers are inhabited by algae. Moreover, algae are of phylogenetic interest, since they are on the base of all land plants. The scientists organized in the Phycology Section therefore aim to introduce and enthuse others for this fascinating, important and diverse group of organisms.

Experts

Our Section provides expertise of / contacts to basic and applied researchers for journalists and media persons. Please write an e-mail to our secretary.

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Alge of the Year 2017
04. January 2017 · Press release

Ancient and still a pioneer: the Blue-Green Rock Dweller is alga of the year 2017

Cross fractured Beacon sandstone from Antarctica exposing the habitat of the blue-green rock dweller (Chroococcidiopsis) as a green band underneath the surface of the rock (arrows). Photo: Burkhard Büdel, TU Kaiserslautern

Algal researchers nominated the Blue-Green Rock Dweller Chroococcidiopsis for the alga of the year 2017. The single celled organism lives inside rocks and lichens, survives extreme climatic conditions and makes hostile environments accessible – today and most likely thousands of millions of years ago as well. While doing so, it paved the way for plants and animals. The blue-green rock dweller, belonging to the cyanobacteria lives like all algae, from sunlight, and is of great interest to ecologists, biotechnologists, and desert- and space researchers. It is the favorite research subject of Prof. Dr. Burkhard Büdel from the University of Kaiserslautern, who has been investigating it for more than 30 years. He is a member of the Phycology Section of the German Society for Plant Sciences, in which the algal researches are organized and who nominate this year an alga of the year for the tenth time this year.

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Press release

More images of the Blue-green Rock Dweller Chroococcidiopsis

Weathered Beacon sandstone at the Linnaeus Terrace region of the Dry Valleys at 1250 meters altitude. Under the rock surface the Blue-Green Rock Dweller (Chroococcidiopsis) lives in the frosty cold of Antarctica. Photo: Burkhard Büdel, TU Kaiserslautern

Photos for the press release Alga of the year 2017: Blue-Green Rock Dweller – ancient and still a pioneer 

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Use of the images is only permitted in connection with reporting on the topic ‘alga of the year 2016’ and only if the photographers are acknowledged in the format: first name, second name, institution. Commercial use of the images is not permitted.

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Contacts for the media

Prof. Dr. Burkhard Büdel

Expert for Chroococcidiopsis and other soil crust inhabitants

University of Kaiserslautern, Biology
Plant Ecology & Systematics
Erwin-Schrödinger-Street 13
D-67663 Kaiserslautern
E-mail: buedel[at]bio.uni-kl.de

Secretary: Andrea Brunner
Phone: +49 (0)631 205 2363
If not available: mobile +49 (0)171 436 7889

Dr. Maike Lorenz

Curator of Culture Collection of Algae at Göttingen University (SAG) and Treasurer of Section of Phycology

Georg-August-University Göttingen
Culture Collection of Algae (SAG)
Nikolausberger Weg 18
37073 Göttingen
Germany

Phone: +49 (0)551 39-5740
E-mail: mlorenz[at]uni-goettingen.de 
Website: www.epsag.uni-goettingen.de  

Alga of the Year 2016
06. January 2016 · Press release

Sea Ice Alga Melosira arctica – winner or loser of climate change?

Many unicellular Melosira arctica are coated from jellyies are hanging under an ice floe. Foto und ©: Julian Gutt, AWI

One of the most important microalgal species from the Arctic Ocean, Melosira arctica, has been nominated “Alga of the Year” by the German Phycology Section. Scientists will use Melosira as a model to understand consequences of climate change. “Currently no one can foresee whether Melosira will benefit or suffer from the melting of sea ice, and nobody knows why it is so productive under such hostile conditions,” says biologist Klaus Valentin from the Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI). He is a Member of the Phycological Section within the Germany Botanical Society, which selected Melosira as Alga of the year 2016.

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Press release

More images of the alga Melosira arctica

The "curtains" of Melosira arctica hanging from the ice floe are about three meters lang. Photo and ©: Julian Gutt, AWI

Photos for the press release alga of the year 2016: Sea Ice Alga Melosira arctica – winner or loser of climate change?

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Use of the images is only permitted in connection with reporting on the topic ‘alga of the year 2016’ and only if the photographers are acknowledged in the format: first name, second name, institution. Commercial use of the images is not permitted.

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Contacts for the media

Dr. Klaus Valentin

Principal Investigator

Alfred Wegener Institut Helmholtz Zentrum für Polar- und Meeresforschung
Am Handelshafen 12,
D-27570 Bremerhaven
Phone: +49 (0)471-48 31 14 52
E-mail: klaus.valentin@awi.de
Web: www.awi.de/ueber-uns/organisation/mitarbeiter/klaus-ulrich-valentin.html

Dr. Regine Jahn

Expert for Diatoms and deputy speaker of the Phycology Section

Botanischer Garten und Botanisches Museum Berlin-Dahlem
Freie Universität Berlin
Königin-Luise-Straße 6-8
D-14195 Berlin
Phone: +49 (0)30-838-50142
E-mail: r.jahn@bgbm.org
Web: www.bgbm.org/de/personal/dr-regine-jahn

Literature and Links

Stecher, A. , Neuhaus, S. , Lange, B. , Frickenhaus, S. , Beszteri, B. , Kroth, P. G. and Valentin, K. U. (2015): rRNA and rDNA based assessment of sea ice protist biodiversity from the central Arctic Ocean, European Journal of Phycology, DOI: dx.doi.org/10.1080/09670262.2015.1077395

Irena Kaczmarska, Regine Jahn (2006): Taxonomic appraisal of Melosira arctica Dickie and description of a new variety (Bacillariophyta). Botanica Marina 49 (2006): 151–164. doi: dx.doi.org/10.1515/BOT.2006.020

Antje Boetius, Sebastian Albrecht, Karel Bakker, Christina Bienhold, Janine Felden, Mar Fernández-Méndez, Stefan Hendricks, Christian Katlein, Catherine Lalande, Thomas Krumpen, Marcel Nicolaus, Ilka Peeken, Ben Rabe, Antonina Rogacheva, Elena Rybakova, Raquel Somavilla, Frank Wenzhöfer, and the RV Polarstern ARK-XXVII/3-Shipboard Science Party (2013): Export of algal biomass from the melting Arctic sea ice. Science. doi: dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.1231346

Alga of the Year 2015
05. January 2015 · Press release

The Sea Lettuce Ulva only gets into shape with the right bacteria

The genus Ulva grows as a tube or a ‘lettuce’ flat, sheet-like blade, as shown for these species collected at the Portuguese coast. The interactions between the juvenile algae and bacteria can be studied under controlled conditions in the laboratory (right). Photos and © Thomas Wichard, University of Jena.

Ulva, a green seaweed found in oceans all over the world, has been selected ‘Alga of the Year 2015’. This ’sea lettuce’ either forms tubular ribbons or sheet-like (‘lettuce’) blades. Individuals commonly reach a size of approx. 20-30 cm. The specific ‘lettuce’ growth form of the alga only develops in association of bacteria which trigger differentiation and development. As Ulva requires the presence of these bacteria, it has developed special mechanisms to attract them. This requires an exchange of information between algae and bacteria. As the two organisms belong to two very different evolutionary groups, this process has fascinated chemists, biologists and algal researchers who now want to establish one Ulva species - namely Ulva mutabilis - as a future model organism.

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Press release

More images / video of the alga Ulva mutabilis

Bacteria-free Ulva mutabilis-cultures develop into an undifferentiated mass of cells (left). Only the association with appropriate bacteria allows Ulva mutabilis to form its natural morphology. The bottom right hand part picture of the panel shows normally developed young algae, which later form a lettuce blade (“sea lettuce”). Photos and © Taghreed Alsufyani, Anne Weiss und Thomas Wichard, University Jena.

Photos of the press release "Alga of the Year 2015: The Sea Lettuce Ulva only gets into shape with the right bacteria

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Use of the images is only permitted in connection with reporting on the topic ‘alga of the year 2015’ and only if the photographers are acknowledged in the format: first name, second name, institution. Commercial use of the images is not permitted.

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Literature and Links

European Network Phycomorph

Løvlie A (1964): Genetic control of division rate and morphogenesis in Ulva mutabilis Føyn. CR Trav. Lab. Carlsb. Comptes. 34, 77-168.

Smetacek V and Zingone A (2013): Green and golden seaweed tides on the rise. Nature 504, 84-88.

Spoerner M, Wichard T, Bachhuber T, Stratmann J, and Oertel W (2012): Growth and thallus morphogenesis of Ulva mutabilis (Chlorophyta) depends on a combination of two bacterial species excreting regulatory factors. J. Phycol. 48, 1433-1447 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1529-8817.2012.01231.x

Contacts for the media

Dr. Thomas Wichard

Head of the research group “Chemical Ecology of Ulva
University of Jena
Institute for anorganic and analytical chemistry
Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena

Phone: ++49 3641 948184

E-mail: Thomas.Wichard[at]uni-jena.de

Alga of the Year 2014
06. January 2014 · Press release

Chlamydomonas reinhardtii - a fast swimmer serves as a model organism

The light microscopic pictures show the 10 micrometer-long green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii with its two cilia (top) and the eyespot area (bottom) which is yellow-orange coloured due to its carotenoid content. Photos: © Thomas Nolte and Maria Mittag, University Jena

Phycologists of the Botanical Society of Germany have selected Chlamydomonas reinhardtii as alga of the year 2014. This unicellular green alga is distributed throughout the world. It is able to sense its light environment, is a fast swimmer and is highly appreciated by algal and plant researchers as well as medical scientists as a model organism. The tiny alga has become an ideal organism for studying a variety of biological questions including a specific diurnal behavior which is triggered by an endogenous clock. Its intriguing features include its way of light perception using a primitive visual system and the transfer of the information to motile cilia; and it can protect itself from bursting by discharging excessive water. Chlamydomonas even provides the basis for the establishment of novel scientific areas in neurobiology and medicine, such as optogenetics where genetically modified cells are applied as ‘light switches’.

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Press release

More images and videos of the alga Chlamydomonas reinhartii

The green alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii lives in freshwater and wet soils. In the lab it grows in liquid (left) and on solid (right) culture media. Photos: © Thomas Nolte and Maria Mittag, University Jena

Photos of the press release "Alga of the Year 2014: Chlamydomonas reinhardtii - a fast swimmer serves as a model organism

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Use of the images is only permitted in connection with reporting on the topic ‘alga of the year 2014’ and only if the photographers are acknowledged in the format: first name, second name, institution. Commercial use of the images is not permitted.

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Literature and Links

Mergenhagen, 1986, Naturwissenschaften 73: 410-412
Merchant et al., 2007, Science 318: 245-251
Hegemann, 2008, Annual Review Plant Biology 59: 167-189
Schulze et al., 2010, Protoplasma 244: 3-14

More information about this alga are available at: www.chlamy.org

Contacts for the media

Professor Dr. Maria Mittag

Expert for molecular mechanisms of day and night rhythms in microalgae, especially in the green alga Chlamydomonas. Also member  of the board of the Phycology Section

Institute of General Botany and Plant Physiology, Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Am Planetarium 1, 07743 Jena, Germany

Web: www.uni-jena.de/Professur_fuer_Allgemeine_Botanik.html
Phone: ++49 (0)3641 – 949 201
E-mail: M.Mittag[at]uni-jena.de

PD Dr. Burkhard Becker

Expert for contractile vacuoles and also member of the board of the Phycology Section

Botanisches Institut, Universität Köln, Zülicherstr. 47b, 50674 Köln, Germany
Web: www.uni-koeln.de/math-nat-fak/botanik/bot1/AGBecker/index.htm
Phone: ++49 (0)221-4707022
E-Mail: b.becker[at]uni-koeln.de

Alga of the Year 2013
02. January 2013 · Press release

The Microalga Lingulodinium polyedrum Illuminates The Sea

Blue bioluminescence caused by blooms of Lingulodinium polyedrum in surface waters near San Diego on the Californian coast in 2011. Photo: With kind permission by Christopher J. Wills, University of California , San Diego

Phycologists have chosen a new alga of the year: the unicellular alga Lingulodinium polyedrum. This dinoflagellate has an armoured plate and two flagella and fascinates not only scientists but also seafarers and beach walkers as is capable of illuminating the sea at night with a bluish light. Algal scientists who are organized in the German Phycological Section of the German Botanical Society want to honour this special algal species. Dr Mona Hoppenrath from the German Centre for Marine Biodiversity (DZMB) at the marine section of the Senckenberg Institute explains this fascinating feature: the species has the ability to auto-luminesce, possesses a distinct diurnal rhythm and can be used as a sensor for water quality.

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Press release

More images of the alga Lingulodinium polyedrum

Chloroplasts containing peridin make Lingulodinium polyedrum appear orange-brown under the light microscope. The unicells photosynthesize utilising light energy. Photo: © Mona Hoppenrath, Senckenberg am Meer, DZMB - Deutsches Zentrum für Marine Biodiversitätsforschung

Photos of the press release "Alga of the Year 2013: The Microalga Lingulodinium polyedrum Illuminates The Sea

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Use of the images is only permitted in connection with reporting on the topic ‘alga of the year 2013’ and only if the photographers are acknowledged in the format: first name, second name, institution. Commercial use of the images is not permitted.

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Contacts for the media

PD Dr. Mona Hoppenrath

Expert for familiar reletionaships among Dinoflagellates

Senckenberg am Meer, DZMB - Deutsches Zentrum für Marine Biodiversitätsforschung, Südstrand 44, D-26382 Wilhelmshaven

Phone: ++49 (0)4421 - 9475-116 (Büro)
or ++49 (0)4421 - 9475-117 (Labor)

E-mail: mhoppenrath[at]senckenberg.de  
Web: www.senckenberg.de

Dr. Regine Jahn

Deputy sepaker of the Phycology Section

Botanischer Garten und Botanisches Museum Berlin-Dahlem, Freie Universität Berlin, Königin-Luise-Straße 6-8, D-14195 Berlin

Tel.: ++49 (0)30 - 838-50142

E-mail: r.jahn[at]bgbm.org 
Web: http://www.bgbm.org

Prof. Dr. Maria Mittag

Expert for molecularbiology of day and night rhythms of L. polyedrum and the green alga Chlamydomonas and member of the Section's board

Institut für Allgemeine Botanik und Pflanzenphysiologie, Friedrich-Schiller Universität Jena, Am Planetarium 1, D-07743 Jena

Tel.: ++49 (0)3641 – 949 201

E-mail: M.Mittag[at]uni-jena.de
Web: http://www.uni-jena.de

Alga of the Year 2012
02. January 2012 · Press release

The Stoneworts (Chara species) – pioneers and keystone species under threat

The mountain lake ‘Sieben Quellen’ near Sulzbach-Rosenberg in Bavaria, Germany: Chara rudis can form dense meadows and cover the whole bottom of this calcium-rich, nutrient-poor lake. Photo: © Klaus van de Weyer, lanaplan GbR

Stoneworts belonging to the genus Chara are algae of the year 2012. They were selected by algal researchers of the Phycology Section of the German Botanical Society because members of this genus represent so many different algal life strategies. According to algal expert Dr Irmgard Blindow from the Ernst-Moritz-Arndt-University Greifswald, some Chara species are able to conquer new aquatic habitats as ‘pioneers’ whilst others exhibit very specific growth requirements, and once having colonised an area, can shape an ecosystem. The decision to declare Chara ‘Alga of the year’ acknowledges the importance of this group of algae which comprises 20 native species included in the Red List of threatened species.

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Press release

More images of the alga Chara

The stonewort Chara horrida had disappeared from German waters in 1980 but has now been rediscovered by algal researchers in the Bodden Waters off the Baltic island of Hiddensee . The alga which can be up to 40 cm in length has so many spines that its main axis is hardly visible which has resulted in its descriptive German common name ‘struppig’ which means ‘bristly’ or ‘rugged’. Photo on top: © Sven Dahlke, Biologische Station Hiddensee, Germany.

Photos of the press release "Alga of the Year 2012": The Stoneworts (Chara species) – pioneers and keystone species under threat

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Use of the images is only permitted in connection with reporting on the topic ‘alga of the year 2012’ and only if the photographers are acknowledged in the format: first name, second name, institution. Commercial use of the images is not permitted.

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Contacts for the media

PD Dr. Irmgard Blindow

The expert for Chara is head of the Biologische Station, University of Greifswald, on the isle of Hiddensee

Phone.: ++49 (0) 38300 - 50251
E-mail: blindi[at]uni-greifswald.de

HD Dr. Burkhard Becker

The Secretary of the Phycology Section researches the evolution of land plants at the University of Cologne, Germany

Phone: ++49 (0)221-4707022

E-mail: b.becker[at]uni-koeln.de

Alga of the Year 2011
11. January 2011 · Press release

Fragilariopsis cylindrus loves the extremes

When ice floes break up and turn over due to heavy seas, their brown lower surface is revealed. Here diatoms such as Fragilariopsis multiply and impose a brown hue on the sea ice; the piece of ice on this image is about 2 mm in length. Photo Dr. Thomas Mock, School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich, Great Britain

Algal researchers from the Phycology Section have declared the diatom Fragilariopsis cylindrus alga of the year 2011. ‘We are fascinated by this species because it can survive and even reproduce within the ice of the polar seas, one of the most extreme habitats on earth’ argues Professor Dr Peter Kroth from the University of Konstanz . Peter Kroth is Chair of the Phycology Section of the German Society for Plant Sciences (DBG).

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Press release

More images of the alga Fragilariopsis cylindrus

The diatom Fragilariopsis cylindrus survives in small channels that are formed in the ice when seawater freezes. In the extreme habitats extreme temperatures can reach - 30 ºC, with a salinity up to four times that of normal seawater, and an extreme shortage of light. To survive in this brine soup, the diatoms need to protect themselves from freezing, high salinity and develop an efficient photosynthetic apparatus. This is why algal researchers find the species so fascinating. Light microscopy: Dr. Karen Junge, University of Washington , USA

Photos of the press release "Alga of the Year" 2011: Fragilariopsis cylindrus loves the extremes

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Use of the images is only permitted in connection with reporting on the topic ‘alga of the year 2011’ and only if the photographers are acknowledged in the format: first name, second name, institution. Commercial use of the images is not permitted.

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Contacts for the media

Prof. Dr. Peter Kroth

Speaker of the Phycology Section

Universität Konstanz, Fachbereich Biologie

Phone: ++49 (0) 7531-884816
E-mail: peter.kroth[at]uni-konstanz.de

Dr. Thomas Mock

Head of the sequence program and expert on Fragilariopsis cylindrus

School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK

Phone: ++44 (0)1603 592566 oder ++44 (0) 1603592163
E-mail: T.Mock[at]uea.ac.uk

Alga of the Year 2010
08. December 2009 · Press release

Batrachospermum Choosen as Alga of the Year 2010

Am Zentralfaden entspringen in regelmäßigen Abständen dicht gedrängte Wirtel, die der Froschlaichalge, Batrachospermum, ein perlschnurartiges Aussehen verleihen. Sie bestehen aus verzweigten Zellfäden. Mikroskopische Aufnahme: Dr. Johanna Knappe, Philipps-Universität Marburg

Sorry in German only

Die Algenforscher der Deutschen Botanischen Gesellschaft haben die Froschlaichalge zur Alge des Jahres 2010 gekürt. Sie möchten damit auf diese gefährdete Pflanze unserer heimischen Gewässer aufmerksam machen. Froschlaichalgen werden immer rarer, da ihr Lebensraum schwindet. Sie sind auf sauberes und kühles Wasser angewiesen, das jedoch oft zugebaut oder durch Abwässer und Pflanzenschutzmittel verunreinigt wird oder bei zu starker Wasserentnahme ganz versiegt. Die Algenspezialistin Dr. Johanna Knappe von der Philipps-Universität Marburg erklärt, was sie an der Roten-Liste-Art fasziniert.

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Press release

More images of the alga Batrachospermum

Im Schutz der Wirtel vereinigen sich männliche und weibliche Geschlechtszellen in der so genannten Trichogyne, dem weiblichen Empfängnisorgan. Nach dem Andocken der männlichen Geschlechtszellen entsteht eine neue der drei Generationen einer Froschlaichalge. Mikroskopische Aufnahme: Dr. Johanna Knappe, Philipps-Universität Marburg

Fotos zur Pressemitteilung Alge des Jahres 2009: Die Froschlaichalge - Anzeiger für saubere Gewässer

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Die Bilder sind freigegeben zur Verwendung in Zusammenhang mit der redaktionellen Berichterstattung über das Thema „Alge des Jahres“ unter Nennung der jeweiligen Urheber und ihrer Institute. Für andere Nutzungsformen kontaktieren Sie bitte die Urheber.

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Contacts for the media

Dr. Johanna Knappe

Spezielle Botanik und Mykologie, Universität Marburg

Phone: ++49 (0)6421 28-22081
E-mail: knappe[at]staff.uni-marburg.de 

Alga of the Year 2009
21. January 2009 · Press release

Emiliania huxleyi – an algal dwarf which impacts on the global climate

Mass reproduction of coccolithophores in the Barents Sea , caught by a NASA satellite. When the algae die, the calcified platelets are released into the water and scatter sunlight so that the water appears light blue. Platelets of intact algal cells do not scatter light. Therefore, whether coccolithophores dominate an algal bloom or not can only be seen from space once most individuals have already died and released their calcified platelets. Photo: Jacques Descloitres, NASA/GSFC, MODIS Rapid Response

Algal researchers of the German Society for Plant Sciences have chosen Emiliania huxleyi as alga of the year to highlight its importance as a global key organism.

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22. January 2009 · Press release

More images of the alga Emiliania huxleyi

Calcified scales cover Emiliania huxleyi. The shape of the liths is characteristic of different species of coccolithophores but can only be distinguished under Scanning Electron Microscopy, as in this image. Photo: Dr. Björn Rost, Alfred-Wegener-Institut für Polar- und Meeresforschung

Photos of the press release "Alga of the Year 2009: Emiliania huxleyi – an algal dwarf which impacts on the global climate

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The use of the image of Dr. Björn Rost is only permitted in connection with reporting on the topic ‘alga of the year 2009’ and only if the photographers are acknowledged in the format: first name, second name, institution. Commercial use of the images is not permitted. If you would like to use the images for any other purpose please contact Dr. Björn Rost.

Terms and conditions for use of NASA images are available at http://visibleearth.nasa.gov/useterms.php.

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Contacts for the media

Prof. Dr. Peter Kroth

Speaker of the Phycology Section

Universität Konstanz
Fachbereich Biologie
Tel. ++49 (0) 7531-884816
E-Mail: peter.kroth[at]uni-konstanz.de

Dr. Björn Rost

Head of the working group PhytoChange and expert for Emiliania

Alfred-Wegener-Institut, Bremerhaven
Tel.: ++49 (0) 471/4831-1809 (9-15 Uhr)
E-Mail: Bjoern.Rost[at]awi.de

Alga of the Year 2008
08. April 2008 · Press release

Micrasterias - immortal but in the Red Data Book for endangered species

Micrasterias furcata has a diameter of only 0.2 millimeters and occurs in boggy areas. It is classified as ‘endangered’ according to the Red Data Book of 2008. Since it was first discovered and described by scientists it has been observed only in three locations in Germany. The species is classified as ‘near threatened’ in Austria. Image: Dr. Monika Engels, desmid algal collection, University of Hamburg

Algenforscher der Sektion Phykologie der Deutschen Botanischen Gesellschaft wählen die Zieralge Micrasterias zur Alge des Jahres 2008. Micrasterias, aus dem Griechischen abgeleitet etwa „kleines Sternchen“, ist eine stark bedrohte, formen- und artenreiche Algengattung, die auf intakte Gewässer angewiesen ist.

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Press release

More Micrasterias images

Micrasterias ceratofera is a spiky exotic species from south-east Asia, first described in 1985. The species lives on the bottom of tropical water bodies such as lakes and rivers, and sometimes free-floating as plankton. In contrast to most of the Micrasterias species that occur in Germany, Micrasterias ceratofera does not inhabit boggy places and its distribution in the tropics does not appear to be threatened. The alga on this image was originally collected from Indonesia in 1983. It was brought back to Germany and has been growing in culture ever since. This culture is available for scientific research in the "Sammlung von Conjugaten-Kulturen (SVCK; Culture Collection for Conjugate Algae)’ at the Institut für Allgemeine Botanik at the University of Hamburg. Image: Dr. Monika Engels, desmid algal collection, University of Hamburg

Photos of the press release "Alga of the Year 2009: Micrasterias - immortal but in the Red Data Book for endangered species

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Use of the images is only permitted in connection with reporting on the topic ‘alga of the year 2015’ and only if the photographers are acknowledged in the format: first name, second name, institution. Commercial use of the images is not permitted.

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Contacts for the media

Wolf-Henning Kusber

Botanischer Garten und Botanisches Museum Berlin-Dahlem

Freie Universität Berlin, Königin-Luise-Str. 6-8, D-14195 Berlin
Phone: ++49 (0)30-838-50177
E-mail: w.h.kusber[at]bgbm.org

Dr. Monika Engels

Zieralgen-Kulturensammlung, Abteilung Zellbiologie und Phykologie

Universität Hamburg, Ohnhorststr. 18, D-22609 Hamburg
Phone: ++49 (0)40-428 16 321
E-mail: engels[at]botanik.uni-hamburg.de

Alga of the Year 2007
03. April 2007 · Press release

Kelp Laminaria nominated "Alga of the year 2007"

A dense underwater forest grows off the coast of Norway, made up mainly of Cuvie (Laminaria hyperborea). Like tree trunks in terrestrial, tropical forests, many kelp stipes are overgrown by epiphytes. The underwater kelp forests offer a range of habitats for many animals and also serve as nursery grounds. Photo: Prof. Dr. Stein Fredriksen, University of Oslo

Members of the Phycology Section of the German Society for Plant Sciences who conduct research on algae nominate the seaweed Laminaria as ‘Alga of the year’: the kelp Laminaria can reach lengths of several metres. It forms, together with other macroalgal species, large underwater forests in the sea (so-called ‘kelp forests’). Kelps contain alginic acid which has several applications as stabilising agents in many food and cosmetic products. In contrast to other plants, kelps grow mainly in winter when sunlight is sparse. Algae take up the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide and are the most important oxygen producers of the world.

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Press release

More Laminaria images

During low water, the Oar Weed may be emersed (Laminaria digitata), like here, on the shores of Helgoland. Individual algae may grow to four metres in length. Clearly visible on the photograph is the finger-like blade after which it is named. The base of the blade is wedge-shaped, which distinguishes it from Laminaria hyperborea with its heart-shaped base of the blade. Photo: Annekatrin Enge, Biological Institute Helgoland of the Alfred-Wegener-Institute

Photos of the press release "Alga of the Year": Kelp Laminaria nominated "Alga of the year 2007"

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Use of the images is only permitted in connection with reporting on the topic ‘alga of the year 2015’ and only if the photographers are acknowledged in the format: first name, second name, institution. Commercial use of the images is not permitted.

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Contacts for the media

Prof. Dr. Christian Wiencke

Sektion Makroalgen-Biologie, Alfred-Wegener-Institut für Polar- und Meeresforschung, Bremerhaven

Phone: 0471-48311338
E-mail: Christian.Wiencke[at]awi.de

Prof. Dr. Ulf Karsten

Institut für Biowissenschaften, Angewandte Ökologie, Universität Rostock

Phone: 0381-4986090
E-mail: ulf.karsten[at]uni-rostock.de