Unikont

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Unikonts
Elephant-ear-sponge.jpg
Orange elephant ear sponge, Agelas clathrodes, in foreground. Two corals in the background: a sea fan, Iciligorgia schrammi, and a sea rod, Plexaurella nutans.
Scientific classification e
Domain: Eukaryota
(unranked): Unikonta
Cavalier-Smith, 2002
Subgroups
Synonyms
  • Amorphea Adl et al., 2012
  • Opimoda Derelle et al., 2015

Unikonts are one of the five superkingdoms in the classification of eukaryotes. They are part of the taxonomy system of Thomas Cavalier-Smith.[1][2]

Clade[change | change source]

The group is claimed to be a clade. It includes eukaryotic cells that:

The unikonts include opisthokonts (animals, fungi, and related forms) and Amoebozoa. By contrast other well-known eukaryotic groups are often referred to as bikonts. Bikonts include Archaeplastida (plants and relatives), Excavata, Rhizaria, and Chromalveolata. These groups may have two flagella (although there are many exceptions).

Characteristics[change | change source]

The unikonts have a triple-gene fusion that is lacking in the bikonts. The three genes code for enzymes which make pyrimidine nucleotides. This must have involved a double gene fusion, a rare pair of events, which supports the shared ancestry of Opisthokonta and Amoebozoa.

References[change | change source]

  1. Cavalier-Smith T (2002). "The phagotrophic origin of eukaryotes and phylogenetic classification of Protozoa". Int. J. Syst. Evol. Microbiol. 52 (Pt 2): 297–354. PMID 11931142. http://ijs.sgmjournals.org/cgi/pmidlookup?view=long&pmid=11931142. 
  2. Cavalier-Smith, Thomas (2003). "Protist phylogeny and the high-level classification of Protozoa". European Journal of Protistology 39 (4): 338–348. doi:10.1078/0932-4739-00002.