Chapter 13. Molecular Approaches to Emiliana huxleyi Coccolith Formation

  1. Prof. Dr. Edmund Bäuerlein
  1. Betsy A. Read and
  2. Thomas M. Wahlund

Published Online: 20 MAR 2008

DOI: 10.1002/9783527619443.ch13

Handbook of Biomineralization: Biological Aspects and Structure Formation

Handbook of Biomineralization: Biological Aspects and Structure Formation

How to Cite

Read, B. A. and Wahlund, T. M. (2007) Molecular Approaches to Emiliana huxleyi Coccolith Formation, in Handbook of Biomineralization: Biological Aspects and Structure Formation (ed E. Bäuerlein), Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH, Weinheim, Germany. doi: 10.1002/9783527619443.ch13

Editor Information

  1. Max-Planck-Institute for Biochemistry, Department of Membrane Biochemistry, Am Klopferspitz 18 A, 82152 Planegg, Germany

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 20 MAR 2008
  2. Published Print: 25 MAY 2007

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9783527316410

Online ISBN: 9783527619443

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Keywords:

  • emiliania huxleyi;
  • coccolithophorid;
  • calcification;
  • biomineralization;
  • microarray;
  • expressed sequence tag;
  • phytoplankton;
  • calcite

Summary

Genomic tools have been developed to allow Emiliania huxleyi to be exploited as a full-featured model for investigating fundamental aspects of coccolithophore biology. To this end, large-scale expressed sequence tag programs have been undertaken and microarrays created with significant gene coverage to unravel one of the most important aspects of coccolithophore biology: that of the genes and proteins involved in calcification and coccolithogenesis. Investigations have also begun functionally to characterize some of the most interesting candidate bio-mineralization transcripts. The analyses to date indicate that biomineralization involves a variety of cellular processes, including cellular metabolism, ion transport, vesicular trafficking, lipid and polysaccharide synthesis, and cell signaling. The complex genetics and cellular physiology of biomineralization is unlikely to be explained by any one gene. To this end, these studies represent a first attempt to define the multiple interactions that characterize this complex process. Further systematic genome wide (and later, proteomic) analyses, in concert with detailed analysis of candidate proteins, will provide new connections between biomineralization and related cellular events that cannot be predicted with the very limited knowledge available at present.