Check-list of microscopic protosteloid amoebae from the Southwest of Europe


  • María Aguilar Mycology Department, Real Jardín Botánico, RJB-CSIC
  • Carlos Lado Mycology Department, Real Jardín Botánico, RJB-CSIC



Protostelids, morphology, taxonomy, distribution, Iberian Peninsula, protists, Amoebozoa


A biodiversity survey for protosteloid amoebae was carried out in Spain, Portugal and France between 2005 and 2010. Samples were collected from three different microhabitats – aerial litter, ground litter, and bark of living plants – in a total of 97 localities. As result 26 to 28 species out of the 33 species of microscopic protosteloid amoebae described to date were recorded. An annotated list that comprises all available data about these organisms from this part of the world, a key to the species, comments on the morphology of the sporocarps and the trophic stages is presented. Photomicrographs of the fruiting bodies of most species, and distribution maps are also included.


Download data is not yet available.


Adl, S.M., Simpson, A.G.B., Lane, C.E., Lukeš, J., Bass, D., Bowser, S.S., Brown, M.W., Burki, F., Dunthorn, M., Hampl, V., Heiss, A., Hoppenrath, M., Lara, E., Le Gall, L., Lynn, D.H., McManus, H., Mitchell, E.A.D., Mozley-Stanridge, S.E., Parfrey, L.W., Pawlowski, J., Rueckert, S., Shadwick, L., Schoch, C.L., Smirnov, A. & Spiegel, F.W. The revised classification of Eukaryotes. Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology 59(5): 429-493. PMid:23020233

Aguilar, M., Lado, C. & Spiegel, F.W. 2007. Protostelids from deciduous forests: first data from southwestern Europe. Mycological Research 111(7): 863-872. PMid:17681227

Aguilar, M., Spiegel, F.W. & Lado, C. 2011. Microhabitat and Climatic Preferences of Protosteloid Amoebae in a Region with a Mediterranean Climate. Microbial Ecolology 62(2): 361-373. PMid:21424821

Baldauf, S.L. & Doolittle, W.F. 1997. Origin and evolution of the slime molds (Mycetozoa). Proceedings of the National Accademy of Sciences of the USA 94: 12007-12012.

Best, S.C. & Spiegel, F.W. 1984. Protostelids and other simple mycetozoans of Hueston Woods State Park and Nature Preserve. In: Willeke, G.B. (ed.), Hueston Woods State Park and Nature Preserve, proceedings of a symposium, April 16-18: 116-121. Oxford, Ohio, Miami University.

Brown, M.W. & Spiegel, F.W. 2008. Assessment of protostelid diversity in Ozark Plateau oak-hickory forests in south central USA. Abstracts from 2007 MSA Meeting at LSU, Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Inoculum 59: 9.

Feest, A. 1987. The quantitative ecology of soil mycetozoa. Progress in Protistology 2: 331-361. Check-list of protostelids

Fiore-Donno, A.M., Nikolaev, S.I., Nelson, M., Pawlowski, J., Cavalier- Smith, T. & Baldauf, S.L. 2010. Deep Phylogeny and Evolution of Slime Moulds (Mycetozoa). Protist 161(1): 55-70. PMid:19656720

Glustchenko, V.I., Akulov, A.Y. & Leontiev, D.V. 2002. First records of microscopic protostelids in Ukraine. Mikologiya I Fitopatologiya 36(4): 7-12.

Kosheleva, A.P., Schnittler, M. & Novozhilov, Y.K. 2009. Protostelids of the "Stolby" State Reserve (Siberia, Eastern Sayan). Protistology 6(1): 24-32.

Lado, C. & Pando, F. 1997. Flora Mycologica Ibérica vol. 2: Myxomycetes, I. Ceratiomyxales, Echinosteliales, Liceales, Trichiales. Real Jardín Botánico, CSIC & J. Cramer in der Gebrüder Borntraeger Verlagsbuchhandlung. Madrid, Berlin, Stuttgart.

Lado, C. (ed.). [2011]. An on line nomenclatural information system of Eumycetozoa. [http://www.nomen.].

Lahr, D.J.G., Gant, J., Nguyen, T., Lin, J.H. & Katz, L.A. 2011. Comprehensive Phylogenetic Reconstruction of Amoebozoa Based on Concatenated Analyses of SSUrDNA and Actin Genes. PLoS ONE 6(7): e22780. PMid:21829512 PMCid:3145751

Lindley, L.A., Edwards, S.M. & Spiegel, F.W. 2006. Variations in nucleolar morphology in Eumycetozoans. Revista mexicana de micología 23: 75-81.

Lindley, L.A., Stephenson, S.L. & Spiegel, F.W. 2007. Protostelids and myxomycetes isolated from aquatic habitats. Mycologia 99(4): 504-509. PMid:18065001

Moore, D.L. & Spiegel, F.W. 1995. A new technique for sampling protostelids. Mycologia 87(3): 414-418.

Moore, D.L. & Spiegel, F.W. 2000a. The effect of season on protostelid communities. Mycologia 92(4): 599-608.

Moore, D.L. & Spiegel, F.W. 2000b. Microhabitat distribution of protostelids in temperate habitats in northwestern Arkansas. Canadian Journal of Botany 78: 985-994.

Moore, D.L. & Spiegel, F.W. 2000c. Microhabitat distribution of protostelids in tropical forests of the Caribbean National Forest, Puerto Rico. Mycologia 92(4): 616-625.

Moore, D.L., Stephenson, S., Laursen, G. & Woodgate, W. 2000. Protostelids from boreal forest and tundra ecosystems in Alaska. Mycologia 92(3): 390-393.

Moore, D.L. & Stephenson, S.L. (2003). Microhabitat distribution of protostelids in a Tropical Wet Forest in Costa Rica. Mycologia 95(1): 11-18. PMid:21156583

Ndiritu, G.G., Stephenson, S.L. & Spiegel, F.W. 2009. First records and microhabitat assessment of protostelids in the Aberdare region, central Kenya. Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology 56(2): 148-158. PMid:19457055

Olive, L.S. 1962. The genus Protostelium. American Journal of Botany 49(3): 297-303.

Olive, L.S. 1964. A new member of the Mycetozoa. Mycologia 56: 885-896.

Olive, L.S. 1967. The Protostelida – A new order of the Mycetozoa. Mycologia 59(1): 1-29. PMid:6068269

Olive, L.S. 1975a. The Mycetozoans. Academic press, New York.

Olive, L.S., Bennett, W.E. & Deasey, M.C. 1984. The new protostelid genus Endostelium. Mycologia 76(5): 884-891.

Olive, L.S. & Stoianovitch, C. 1966a. A new two-spored species of Cavostelium (Protostelida). Mycologia 58(3): 440-451.

Olive, L.S. & Stoianovitch, C. 1966b. A simple new mycetozoan with ballistospores. American Journal of Botany 53: 344-349.

Olive, L.S. & Stoianovitch, C. 1966c. A new genus of protostelids showing affinities with Ceratiomyxa. American Journal of Botany 58(1): 32-40.

Olive, L.S. & Stoianovitch, C. 1969. Monograph of the genus Protostelium. American Journal of Botany 56(9): 979-988.

Olive, L.S. & Stoianovitch, C. 1971. A new genus of protostelids showing affinities with Ceratiomyxa. American Journal of Botany 58(1): 32-40.

Olive, L.S. & Stoianovitch, C. 1972. Protosporangium: a new genus of protostelids. Journal of Protozoology 19: 563-571.

Olive, L.S. & Stoianovitch, C. 1975. The protostelid genus Schizoplasmodiopsis. Mycologia 67: 1087-1100.

Olive, L.S. & Stoianovitch, C. 1977a. Clastostelium, a new ballistosporous protostelid (Mycetozoa) with flagellate cells. Transactions of the British Mycological Society 69(1): 83-88.

Olive, L.S. & Stoianovitch, C. 1977b. A new microsporangial protostelid, Microglomus paxillus gen. and sp. nov. Journal of Protozoology 24: 485-489.

Olive, L.S. & Stoianovitch, C. 1981. Protostelium expulsum sp. nov., a simple mycetozoan with a unique method of spore discharge. Transactions of the British Mycological Society 76: 303-309.

Olive, L.S. & Whitney, K.D. 1982. A new species of the protostelid genus Schizoplasmodiopsis. Mycologia 74: 655-661.

Powers, D.M. & Stephenson, S.L. 2006. Protostelids from tropical forests, woodlands and deserts in Australia. Mycologia 98(2): 218-222. PMid:16894966

Reinhardt, D.J. & Olive L.S. 1966. Echinosteliopsis, a New Genus of the Mycetozoa. Mycologia 58(6): 966-970.

Romeralo, M. & Lado, C. 2006. Dictyostelids from Mediterranean forests of the south of Europe. Mycological Progress 5: 231-241.

Shadwick, J. & Stephenson, S. 2004. First records of protostelids from northern India. Fungal Diversity 16: 141-145.

Shadwick, J.D.L., Stephenson, S.L. & Spiegel, F.W. 2009a. Distribution and ecology of protostelids in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Mycologia 101(3): 320-328 PMid:19537205

Shadwick, L.L., Spiegel, F.W., Shadwick, J.D.L., Brown, M.W. & Silberman, J.D. 2009b. Eumycetozoa = Amoebozoa?: SSUrDNA phylogeny of protosteloid slime molds and its significance for the Amoebozoan supergroup. PLoS ONE 4(8): 1-13. PMid:19707546 PMCid:2727795

Spiegel, F.W. 1981. Phylogenetic significance of the flagellar apparatus in Protostelids (Eumycetozoa). BioSistems 14: 491-499.

Spiegel, F.W. 1984. Protostelium nocturnum, a new, minute, ballistosporous protostelid. Mycologia 76: 443-447.

Spiegel, F.W. 1986. Phylum plasmodial slime molds class Protostelida. In: Margulis, L. & al. (eds.), Handbook of Protoctista: 484-497. Jones and Barlett, Boston.

Spiegel, F.W. 1990. Phylum plasmodial slime molds, Class Protostelida. In: Margulis, L. & al. (eds.), Handbook of Protoctista: 484-497. Jones and Bartlett Boston.

Spiegel, F.W. & Feldman, J. 1985. Obligate amoebae of the protostelids: significance for the concept of Eumycetozoa. BioSystems 18: 377-386.

Spiegel, F.W. & Feldman, J. 1989. Fruiting body development in the mycetozoan Echinostelium bisporum. Canadian Journal of Botany 67: 1285-1293.

Spiegel, F.W. & Feldman, J. 1991. Microtubular cytoskeletons of the trophic cells of five eumycetozoans. Protoplasma 163: 189-198.

Spiegel, F.W., Feldman, J. & Bennet W.E. 1986. Ultrastructure and development of the amoebo-flagellate cells of the protostelid Protosporangium articulatum. Protoplasma 132: 115-128.

Spiegel, F.W., Gecks, S.C. & Feldman, J. 1994. Revision of the genus Protostelium (Eumycetozoa) I: The Protostelium mycophaga Group and the P. irregularis Group. Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology 41(5): 511-518.

Spiegel, F.W., Lee, S.B. & Rusk, S.A. 1995. Eumycetozoans and molecular systematics. Canadian Journal of Botany 73(Suppl. 1): 738-746.

Spiegel, F.W., Moore, D.L. & Feldman, J. 1995. Tychosporium acutostipes, a new protostelid which modifies the concept of the Protosteliidae. Mycologia 87(2): 265-270.

Spiegel, F.W., Shadwick, J.D. & Hemmes, D.E. 2006. A new ballistosporous species of Protostelium. Mycologia 98(1): 150-154.

Spiegel, F.W., Shadwick, J.D., Lindley- Settlemyre, L., Brown, M.W. & Ndiritu, G. 2007. A beginner's guide to identifying the protostelids. [].

Spiegel, F.W. & Stephenson, S. 2000. Protostelids of Macquarie Island. Mycologia 92(5): 849-852.

Spiegel, F.W., Stephenson, S.L., Keller, H.W., Moore, D.L. & Cavender, J.C. 2004. Sampling the biodiversity of mycetozoans. In: Mueller, G.M. & al. (eds.), Biodiversity of fungi: 547-577. Academic press, New York.

Stephenson, S.L., Landolt, J.C. & Moore, D.L. 1999. Protostelids, dictyostelids, and myxomycetes in the litter microhabitat of the Luquillo Experimental Forest, Puerto Rico. Mycological Research 103: 209-214.

Tesmer, J., Rulik, B., Spiegel, F., Shadwick, J. & Schnittler, M. 2005. Protostelids from German Beech forests. Mycological Progress 4(4): 267-271.

Tesmer, J. & Schnittler, M. 2009. Aquatic protostelids – a study from northeastern Germany. Fungal Ecology 2(3): 140-144.

Whitney, K.D., Bennett, W.E. & Olive, L.S. 1982. Observations on Echinostelium bisporum. Mycologia 74(4): 677-680.

Whitney, K.D. & Bennett, W.E. 1984. An ultrastructural study of feeding techniques in three protostelids. Canadian Journal of Botany 62: 1750-1755.




How to Cite

Aguilar, M., & Lado, C. (2012). Check-list of microscopic protosteloid amoebae from the Southwest of Europe. Anales Del Jardín Botánico De Madrid, 69(2), 217–236.




Most read articles by the same author(s)