2008 年 41 巻 1 号 p. 9-13
It is known that dinoflagellates acquired a plastid from a red alga via secondary endosymbiosis. However, several dinoflagellates should have abandoned their original plastid and acquired again plastids from different sources. Engulfing free-living algae, some dinoflagellates use them as a temporary plastid. This phenomenon is considered to be an on-going process of plastid acquisition, and this temporary plastid is called “kleptochloroplast”. In a probably monophyletic groups of unarmoured dinoflagellates, various stages of endosymbiosis, namely, reduction of endosymbiont's organelles except plastid, are present, which would be good research targets for understanding evolutionary process of plastid acquisition. Besides dinoflagellates, kleptochloroplasts are distributed in a wide range of protists. In this mini review, we introduce diversity of kleptochloroplasts in protists in particular reference to the dinoflagellates.