New Paper on Elysia chlorotica

September 22, 2000
From: Elizabeth J. Summer

Hi Bill,
Mary Rumpho's group has published another paper on chloroplast symbiosis in Elysia chlorotica.

The reference is: Brian J. Green, Wei-Ye Li, James R. Manhart, Theodore C. Fox, Elizabeth J. Summer, Robert A. Kennedy, Sidney K.Pierce, and Mary E. Rumpho (2000) Mollusc-Algal Chloroplast Endosymbiosis. Photosynthesis, Thylakoid Protein Maintenance, and Chloroplast Gene Expression Continue for Many Months in the Absence of the Algal Nucleus. Plant Physiology, 124: 331-342.

The most significant findings are:
• 1. at least one algal nuclear encoded protein (a light harvesting complex protein) is maintained in the animal for 9 months in the absence of algal food.
• 2. there is no algal nuclear DNA in photosynthetically active animals
• 3. Chloroplast RFLP analysis supports field observations that Vaucheria litorea is the chloroplast source in the Martha's Vineyard (Massachusetts, USA) population of E. chlorotica - I think this is the first time molecular tools have been used for this sort of analysis.


Elizabeth J Summer, Ph.D.
Dept Horticultural Sciences
Texas A&M University
College Station TX 77843

Summer, E.J., 2000 (Sep 22) New Paper on Elysia chlorotica. [Message in] Sea Slug Forum. Australian Museum, Sydney. Available from

Dear Liz,
Thanks for keeping us up to date with the work going on in Mary Rumpho's lab. From the emails I have had from students, there are a lot of biologists who find this topic fascinating. I have added the reference to my list of Chloroplast Symbiosis References.

Best wishes,
Bill Rudman.


Elysia chlorotica

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