A Morphogenetic Description of Thigmokeronopsis stoecki Shao et al., 2008 (Ciliophora, Hypotricha) and a Comparison with Members of the Family Pseudokeronopsidae

Xumiao Chen,

Liqiong Li,

Xiaozhong Hu,

Chen Shao,

Saleh A. Al-Farraj,

Khaled A. S. Al-Rasheid


The urostylid family Pseudokeronopsidae Borror and Wicklow, 1983 was considered to be a well-outlined taxon. Nevertheless, recent evidence, including morphological, ontogenetic, and molecular information, has consistently revealed the polyphyly of this family. In the present work, a new population of Thigmokeronopsis stoecki Shao et al., 2008 was found and its binary divisional process was described for the first time. In addition, the morphogenetic features of Thigmokeronopsis species and all the other pseudokeronopsids, for which detailed ontogenetic data are available, were rechecked and compared. This reveals that: (1) the ontogenetic process of T. stoecki corresponds well with its congeners T. jahodai and T. rubra except for the macronuclear behavior; (2) Apokeronopsis and Thigmokeronopsis share a similar ontogenetic mode despite of the differences in the number and origin of their buccal cirri; (3) most pseudokeronopsids share the same pattern in the origins of their oral primordia and fronto-ventral-transverse cirral anlagen, except for Pseudokeronopsis similis, which may not be a valid member of the family Pseudokeronopsidae.

Słowa kluczowe: Hypotrichs, ontogenesis, Pseudokeronopsidae, Thigmokeronopsis

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