world of amoeboid organisms

Lacogromia cassipara
Lacogromia, typical shape

Family Lacogromiidae Siemensma and Holzmann, 2020

Diagnosis: Multinucleate agglutinated monothalamous foraminifera. Test elongated to broadly pyriform or lens- or spindle-shaped, flexible, with a layer of small siliceous particles and commonly with some organic particles of debris. Aperture terminal, straight or oblique. Peduncle placed later-ally and surrounded by a hyaline peduncular sheath. Nuclei spherical, ovular.

Molecular features: The partial SSU rDNA sequences of Lacogromiidae contain between 801–891 nucleotides, the GC content ranges from 45.6%–47.4%. Pairwise distances range from 0.043 to 0.104, the overall average is 0.017.

Type genus: Lacogromia Siemensma, Apothéloz-Perret-Gentil, Holzmann, Clauss, Völcker and Pawlowski, 2017.

Genus Lacogromia Siemensma et al., 2017, improved diagnosis Siemensma et al., 2020

Diagnosis: As for family.

Type species: L. cassipara 


L. squamosa (Penard, 1899)
L. brunneri (Blanc, 1886)
L. palustris (Thomas, 1961)

Ecology: Freshwater; in organic sediment of stagnant oligotrophic and mesotrophic water bodies.

Morphological variations: Siemensma et al. (2017) found morphological differences between populations from different locations and consider them as different morphotypes (A and B). Cells of type A look grayish or brownish grey when observed under transmitted light. The colour depends on the kind of food in the cytoplasm, the number of crystal-like particles and the colour of the agglutinated material in the test wall. Mineral material is commonly colourless, but organic particles are mostly ochre yellow, brown or black. Tests of type B vary in colour, those of younger, smaller specimens are light ochre yellow, and tests of older, larger specimens are darker ochre yellow or reddish brown and black. The colour is not always evenly distributed. Usually the proximal and apertural region are darker. Another difference between the two types is the covering of the proximal part. Tests of morphotype B have an extra layer of loosely attached particles, resembling a kind of cap, while tests of morphotype A do not have any extra covering. Agglutinated particles of these caps are larger than the regular ones, up to 10 µm. The length of all observed tests, both alive or empty, varied between 91 and 560 µm (mean 264 µm, std. dev. 77, n=333), with a width of 48–407 µm (mean 154 µm). The average length/breadth ratio is 1.8, with extremes between 1.1 and 3.5. Biometrical analysis showed differences in this ratio between both morphotypes (Graph below). Differences between both morphotypes are summarized inthe table below.

Lacogromia cassipara
Biometric analysis of the length/breadth ratio of tests of Lacogromia cassipara, morphotype A and B, and Limnogromia sinensis.


L. cassipara Morphotype A (n=224) Morphotype B (n=109)
Aperture No pronounced collar, smooth Distinct collar with double ring, often with constriction
Shape Broadly ovoid-pyriform, proximal end broadly rounded Elongated ovoid – elongated pyriform, or spindle-shaped; proximal end conical, rounded
Proximal end Without extra cap of particles Usually with cap of larger particles
Structure Particles loosely attached Particles close to each other
Colour Colourless or light ocre yellow Dark brown, ocre yellow or black
L/B ratio 1.1–2.4, mean 1.5 1.7–3.5, mean 2.3
Length 91–530 µm, mean 262 µm 123–560 µm, mean 267 µm
Width 48–407 µm, mean 173 µm 46–202 µm, mean 117 µm
Nuclei, diameter 18–66 µm, mean 38.6 µm 8.7–77 µm, mean 29.0 µm

Reference: Ferry Siemensma, Laure Apothéloz-Perret-Gentil, Maria Holzmann, Steffen Clauss, Eckhard Völcker, Jan Pawlowski: Taxonomic revision of freshwater foraminifera with the description of two new agglutinated species and genera, European Journal of Protistology 60 (2017) 28–44.

Lacogromia cassipara
Lacogromia cassipara
This photomicrograph shows the entosolenian tube, an internal tube through which the cytoplasm streams out of the test.
Lacogromia cassipara
Detail of the above test; Pe = peduncle; small arrows: entosolenian tube.
Lacogromia cassipara
Detail of another surface, more enlarged

Additional information:

Penardogromia palustris Thomas 1961

According to Thomas (1961), the test is covered with calcareous particles, but we doubt if this is specific to this species and therefore a distinctive feature. In fact, Siemensma et al. 2017 find the description of P. palustris insufficient to distinguish it from other related species. Though Thomas described the test as elongated tubular, he did not mention anything about the flexibility, extensibility and pliability of the test, which is so characteristic for tubular species. Based on the original drawing (Thomas 1961) the species resembles much more a small Lacogromia than a Limnogromia species. The test in this drawing (Thomas 1961) also resembles the deviating specimen in slide 433 of the Penard Collection.

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