Chromochloris zofingiensis (Chlorophyceae) divides by consecutive multiple fission cell-cycle under batch and continuous cultivation

Idan Koren, Sammy Boussiba, Inna Khozin-Goldberg, Aliza Zarka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Several green algae can divide by multiple fission and spontaneously synchronize their cell cycle with the available light regime. The yields that can be obtained from a microalgal culture are directly affected by cell cycle events. Chromochloris zofingiensis is considered as one of the most promising microalgae for biotechnological applications due to its fast growth and the flexible trophic capabilities. It is intensively investigated in the context of bio-commodities production (ca-rotenoids, storage lipids); however, the pattern of cell-cycle events under common cultivation strategies was not yet characterized for C. zofingiensis. In this study, we have employed fluorescence microscopy to characterize the basic cell-cycle dynamics under batch and continuous modes of pho-totrophic C. zofingiensis cultivation. Staining with SYBR green—applied in DMSO solution—ena-bled, for the first time, the clear and simple visualization of polynuclear stages in this microalga. Accordingly, we concluded that C. zofingiensis divides by a consecutive pattern of multiple fission, whereby it spontaneously synchronizes growth and cell division according to the available illumi-nation regime. In high-light continuous culture or low-light batch culture, C. zofingiensis cell-cycle was completed within several light-dark (L/D) cycles (14 h/10 h); however, cell divisions were syn-chronized with the dark periods only in the high-light continuous culture. In both modes of culti-vation, daughter cell release was mainly facilitated by division of 8 and 16-polynuclear cells. The results of this study are of both fundamental and applied science significance and are also important for the development of an efficient nuclear transformation system for C. zofingiensis.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number157
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2021


  • Astaxanthin
  • Cell-cycle
  • Chromochloris zofingiensis
  • Microalgae
  • Multiple fission

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Immunology and Microbiology
  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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