Hall, Richard P. Formerly, University of California, Los Angeles, California.
An order of Protozoa in the subclass Granuloreticulosia. The group includes deep-sea forms which are multinucleate at maturity. They develop as discoid to fan-shaped or algalike branching forms (illus. a and b) covered with a hyaline organic layer and sometimes measuring 0.08 in. (2 mm) or more overall. The aggregate contains many tubes (illus. c) which vary in diameter and form netlike or branching patterns. The more delicate tubes contain multinucleate protoplasm; the coarser ones, dark brownish clumps which are possibly waste materials. Foreign particles, such as radiolarian skeletons or foraminiferid tests, are often embedded in the nets or among the branches. A feltlike material also is found between adjacent tubes in some species. The lack of detailed information makes the taxonomic status of these organisms somewhat uncertain. The genera included are Psammetta, Stannoma, and Stannophyllum. See also: Protozoa; Rhizopodea; Sarcodina; Sarcomastigophora
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