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Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
Marine Botany




  • calcareous - calcified, hardened with lime (calcium carbonate), e.g. in the Corallinales
  • callus - abnormal, thickened part often a reaction of wounding
  • capitate - shaped like a head, swollen at one or both ends
  • carpogonium - haploid (N) female sexual structure in Rhodophyta consisting of single cell and its extension, the trichogyne
  • carposporangia - single celled structures that produce the diploid (2N) carpospores on the parasitic carposporophyte in Rhodophyta
  • carpospore - non-motile diploid (2N) spores formed on parasitic carposporophyte stage of the Rhodophyta, which germinate to form tetrasporophyte stage
  • carposporophyte - the diploid (2N) stage of Rhodophyta which develops after fertilization of the carpogonium
  • cartilaginous - fleshy, but firm or even tough and leathery
  • centrifugal - developing from the center outward
  • centripetal - developing inward toward the center
  • chloroplast - double-membrane bound organelle inside the cell with photosynthetic pigments on thylakoids
  • clone - a population asexually derived from a single cell or individual
  • coenocytic - multinucleate, without cell crosswalls, composed of multinucleate cells or segments
  • colony - aggregation or loose organization of similar cells (or organisms) which developed from a single original cell or organism, each capable of independence from the rest of the colony
  • commensal - organisms living in, on or with another, without any particular advantage or harm from the relationship
  • compensation point - conditions where respiration is in balance with photosynthesis, with generally no net gas exchange, in algae usually related to habitat depth
  • compound - having multiple parts or branches, not simple
  • compressed - flattened
  • concave - saucer-shaped, with surface that curves inward
  • conceptacle - cavity or chamber containing reproductive structures with opening to the surface for release, e.g. in Corallinales and Fucales
  • conjugation - special form of isogamy where the reproductive protoplasts of two organisms form a common tube and fuse together, e.g. in Zygnemataceae
  • convex - having surface that curves outward
  • cortex - tissue lying between the epidermis layer and the central medulla tissue
  • cortical - relating to the cortex
  • cosmopolitan - found in many parts of the world
  • costate - ribbed
  • cover cells - sterile cells cut off from during the formation of tetrasporangia in Rhodophyta
  • crosswall - end wall of a cell in a filament
  • cruciate - generally cross-shaped; in the Rhodophyta, the type of division where tetrasporangium divides in two planes at right angles to each other
  • cryptostoma - cavity open to surface that contains hairs or pariphyses, e.g. in Fucales
  • cuneate - wedge shaped, triangular with acute angle downward
  • cuticle - structureless layer on outer surface of some plants
  • cystocarp - the carposporophyte and surrounding envelop of haploid (1N) female gametophyte tissue (or pericarp) in the Rhodophyta
  • cystocarpic - bearing cystocarps, signaling a fertilized female gametophyte in the Rhodophyta
  • cytokinesis - process of cell division, as opposed to nuclear division


Last updated: Feb. 05, 2009