DR OLIVER SKIBBE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR OLIVER SKIBBE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Vampyrella trophozoites fusing. Time-lapse light microscopy footage of two Vampyrella lateritia trophozoites (round) fusing near a strand of Spirogyra algae (tubular). The two smaller trophozoites have fuses to form a larger, syncytial trophozoite. Vampyrella is a unicellular micro-organism sometimes described as a 'vampire amoeba'. It attacks other microscopic organisms, such as algae, and penetrates their cell walls and extracts the contents. Vampyrella are found in aquatic freshwater environments, with other vampyrellid species found in soil and in the sea. The speed of this footage has been increased to ten times normal.
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