Green algae viruses (chloroviruses) are found in open waters and
It is able to infect the cells of invading green algae and dissolve them.
A study published on Dec. 27 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) found that green algae viruses are also a food source for a ciliate, the bouncing worm (Halteria).
Scientists added a large amount of green algae virus to a pond water sample to look for organisms that could coexist with the green algae virus and found that bouncing worms could eat the virus.
A 15-fold increase in the number of bouncing worms and a 100-fold plunge in the number of viruses after two days of co-culture with green algae virus in clean droplets.
In contrast, the number of bouncing worms without added virus did not increase.
After using a green fluorescent agent to label the green algae virus, the researchers found that after the bouncing worms swallowed the virus, the vesicles that stored the food also turned green, confirming the process.
In addition, the efficiency of the elasmobranchs in converting green algal viruses into their own material.
The body size ratio between the two was similar to the predation relationship of other aquatic microorganisms.
It could further support that green algal virus is the food source of elasmobranchs.