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Keywords:

  • dinoflagellates;
  • LSU rDNA;
  • molecular phylogeny;
  • nuclear DNA;
  • Prorocentrum;
  • SEM;
  • SSU rDNA;
  • taxonomy

A new marine benthic Prorocentrum species from sandy habitats of South Brittany (northwestern France), P. consutum sp. nov., is described using LM and SEM and molecular phylogenetic analyses. Cells have a subcircular to broadly ovoid shape and are plainly flattened. They are 57–61 μm long and 52–55 μm wide. A central pyrenoid is present, and the kidney-shaped nucleus is positioned in the posterior region. In right valve view, the periflagellar area is deeply excavated, and the left valve forms a prominent apical ridge. The periflagellar area consists of nine platelets, and a small narrow collar is present around the flagellar pore. The ornamentation of this new species is very peculiar and is characterized by a ring of round areolae located at the periphery of the valves, each areola containing three or four pores. Apart from this ring of areolae, the cell surface is smooth and with scattered pores. Pores are not present in the center of the right or left valve. The intercalary band is generally narrow and faintly striated horizontally. The molecular phylogenetic position of P. consutum sp. nov. was inferred using SSU and LSU rDNA. In both analyses, this species branched with high support in the clade comprising species with a symmetric shape and appeared to be a sister group to that formed by P. lima and other tropical benthic species, such as P. arenarium, P. belizeanum, P. hoffmannianum, and P. maculosum.