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1.  Estimates of nuclear DNA content in red algal lineages 
AoB Plants  2012;2012:pls005.
This paper compiles and discusses all currently available nuclear genome size data for red algae in relation to their most recent taxonomic classification.
Background and aims
The red algae are an evolutionarily ancient group of predominantly marine organisms with an estimated 6000 species. Consensus higher-level molecular phylogenies support a basal split between the unicellular Cyanidiophytina and morphologically diverse Rhodophytina, the later subphylum containing most red algal species. The Rhodophytina is divided into six classes, of which five represent early diverging lineages of generally uninucleate species, whose evolutionary relationships are poorly resolved. The remaining species compose the large (27 currently recognized orders), morphologically diverse and typically multinucleate Florideophyceae. Nuclear DNA content estimates have been published for <1 % of the described red algae. The present investigation summarizes the state of our knowledge and expands our coverage of DNA content information from 196 isolates of red algae.
The DNA-localizing fluorochrome DAPI (4′,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole) and RBC (chicken erythrocytes) standards were used to estimate 2C values with static microspectrophotometry.
Principal results
Nuclear DNA contents are reported for 196 isolates of red algae, almost doubling the number of estimates available for these organisms. Present results also confirm the reported DNA content range of 0.1–2.8 pg, with species of Ceramiales, Nemaliales and Palmariales containing apparently polyploid genomes with 2C = 2.8, 2.3 and 2.8 pg, respectively.
Early diverging red algal lineages are characterized by relatively small 2C DNA contents while a wide range of 2C values is found within the derived Florideophyceae. An overall correlation between phylogenetic placement and 2C DNA content is not apparent; however, genome size data are available for only a small portion of red algae. Current data do support polyploidy and aneuploidy as pervasive features of red algal genome evolution.
PMCID: PMC3303098  PMID: 22479676
2.  Estimates of nuclear DNA content in 98 species of brown algae (Phaeophyta) 
AoB Plants  2011;2011:plr001.
Despite the fact that brown algae are critical components of marine ecosystems around the world only one species has had its genome sequenced. To facilitate genome studies in the class we report data for 12 of the 19 recognized orders.
Background and aims
Brown algae are critical components of marine ecosystems around the world. However, the genome of only one species of the class has so far been sequenced. This contrasts with numerous sequences available for model organisms such as higher plants, flies or worms. The present communication expands our coverage of DNA content information to 98 species of brown algae with a view to facilitating further genomic investigations of the class.
The DNA-localizing fluorochrome DAPI (4′,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole) and the red blood cell (chicken erythrocyte) standard were used to estimate 2C values by static microspectrophotometry.
Principal results
2C DNA contents are reported for 98 species of brown algae, almost doubling the number of estimates available for the class. The present results also expand the reported DNA content range to 0.2–3.6 pg, with several species of Fucales and Laminariales containing apparent polyploid genomes with 2C = 1.8–3.6 pg.
The data provide DNA content values for 12 of the 19 recognized orders of brown algae spanning the breadth of the class. Despite earlier contentions concerning DNA content and the presence of oogamy, the present results do not support a correlation between phylogenetic placement and genome size. The closest sister groups to the brown algae have genome sizes on the order of 0.3 pg (e.g. Schizocladiophyceae), suggesting that this may be the ancestral genome size. However, DNA content ranges widely across the class.
PMCID: PMC3064507  PMID: 22476472
3.  Nuclear DNA Content Estimates in Green Algal Lineages: Chlorophyta and Streptophyta 
Annals of Botany  2007;99(4):677-701.
Background and Aims
Consensus higher-level molecular phylogenies present a compelling case that an ancient divergence separates eukaryotic green algae into two major monophyletic lineages, Chlorophyta and Streptophyta, and a residuum of green algae, which have been referred to prasinophytes or micromonadophytes. Nuclear DNA content estimates have been published for less than 1% of the described green algal members of Chlorophyta, which includes multicellular green marine algae and freshwater flagellates (e.g. Chlamydomonas and Volvox). The present investigation summarizes the state of our knowledge and adds substantially to our database of C-values, especially for the streptophyte charophycean lineage which is the sister group of the land plants. A recent list of 2C nuclear DNA contents for isolates and species of green algae is expanded by 72 to 157.
The DNA-localizing fluorochrome DAPI (4′,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole) and red blood cell (chicken erythrocytes) standard were used to estimate 2C values with static microspectrophotometry.
Key Results
In Chlorophyta, including Chlorophyceae, Prasinophyceae, Trebouxiophyceae and Ulvophyceae, 2C DNA estimates range from 0·01 to 5·8 pg. Nuclear DNA content variation trends are noted and discussed for specific problematic taxon pairs, including Ulotrichales–Ulvales, and Cladophorales–Siphonocladales. For Streptophyta, 2C nuclear DNA contents range from 0·2 to 6·4 pg, excluding the highly polyploid Charales and Desmidiales, which have genome sizes of up to 14·8 and 46·8 pg, respectively. Nuclear DNA content data for Streptophyta superimposed on a contemporary molecular phylogeny indicate that early diverging lineages, including some members of Chlorokybales, Coleochaetales and Klebsormidiales, have genomes as small as 0·1–0·5 pg. It is proposed that the streptophyte ancestral nuclear genome common to both the charophyte and the embryophyte lineages can be characterized as 1C = 0·2 pg and 1n = 6.
These data will help pre-screen candidate species for the on-going construction of bacterial artificial chromosome nuclear genome libraries for land plant ancestors. Data for the prasinophyte Mesostigma are of particular interest as this alga reportedly most closely resembles the ‘ancestral green flagellate’. Both mechanistic and ecological processes are discussed that could have produced the observed C-value increase of >100-fold in the charophyte green algae whereas the ancestral genome was conserved in the embryophytes.
PMCID: PMC2802934  PMID: 17272304
‘Ancestral green flagellate’ (AGF); C-value enigma; chlorophyta; DNA C-values; nuclear genome size; Streptophyta
4.  Eukaryotic genome size databases 
Nucleic Acids Research  2006;35(Database issue):D332-D338.
Three independent databases of eukaryotic genome size information have been launched or re-released in updated form since 2005: the Plant DNA C-values Database (), the Animal Genome Size Database () and the Fungal Genome Size Database (). In total, these databases provide freely accessible genome size data for >10 000 species of eukaryotes assembled from more than 50 years' worth of literature. Such data are of significant importance to the genomics and broader scientific community as fundamental features of genome structure, for genomics-based comparative biodiversity studies, and as direct estimators of the cost of complete sequencing programs.
PMCID: PMC1669731  PMID: 17090588
5.  Nuclear DNA Content Variation in Life History Phases of the Bonnemasoniaceae (Rhodophyta) 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(1):e86006.
Nuclear DNA content in gametophytes and sporophytes or the prostrate phases of the following species of Bonnemaisoniaceae (Asparagopsis armata, Asparagopsis taxiformis, Bonnemaisonia asparagoides, Bonnemaisonia clavata and Bonnemaisonia hamifera) were estimated by image analysis and static microspectrophotometry using the DNA-localizing fluorochrome DAPI (4′, 6-diamidino-2-phenylindole, dilactate) and the chicken erythrocytes standard. These estimates expand on the Kew database of DNA nuclear content. DNA content values for 1C nuclei in the gametophytes (spermatia and vegetative cells) range from 0.5 pg to 0.8 pg, and for 2C nuclei in the sporophytes or the prostrate phases range from 1.15–1.7 pg. Although only the 2C and 4C values were observed in the sporophyte or the prostrate phase, in the vegetative cells of the gametophyte the values oscillated from 1C to 4C, showing the possible start of endopolyploidy. The results confirm the alternation of nuclear phases in these Bonnemaisoniaceae species, in those that have tetrasporogenesis, as well as those that have somatic meiosis. The availability of a consensus phylogenetic tree for Bonnemaisoniaceae has opened the way to determine evolutionary trends in DNA contents. Both the estimated genome sizes and the published chromosome numbers for Bonnemaisoniaceae suggest a narrow range of values consistent with the conservation of an ancestral genome.
PMCID: PMC3899103  PMID: 24465835

Results 1-5 (5)