Original paper

A new morphotype of Blennothrix (Cyanoprokaryota, Oscillatoriales) from streams of Brazil and Mexico

Branco, Luis Henrique Z.; Montejano, Gustavo


Blennothrix was proposed by Kützing in 1843, but it was suppressed in the taxonomic starting point of the group. However, Hydrocoleum species with discoid cells and with a special type of branching were transferred to Blennothrix, which was then revalidated. Its species occur in tropical and temperate regions of the world and can be found in saltwater, aerophytic environments and freshwater. They are especially well distributed in marine and brackish environments (coastal areas) and more rarely in terrestrial biotopes (sometimes associated to saline soils). During independent studies carried out in Brazil and Mexico, populations of Blennothrix with same morphology were found growing in streaming water under similar environmental conditions. They clearly correspond to the diagnosis of the genera Blennothrix, but differ of all the species described until now. The detailed taxonomic study revealed that the populations represent a new species of the genus, named B. komarekii, which is described and discussed according to the recent tendencies of cyanoprokaryotean taxonomy. The existence of such stable and widespread morphotype assures that the classical method (based on morphology and metrics), improved with ecological characterization, is still a good tool to describe new taxa. Obviously, additional information from molecular and/or cytological studies is highly desirable but, at this moment, it cannot be considered an obligatory way to reach the identity of cyanoprokaryotean taxa.


blennothrixnew speciesoscillatorialescyanoprokaryotacyanobacteriastreamsbrazilmexico