Zooxanthellae: The yellow symbionts inside animals

Noga Stambler

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

54 Scopus citations


Corals are associated with photosymbiotic unicellular algae and cyanobacteria. The unicellular algae are usually called zooxanthellae due to their yellow-brown color. The zooxanthellae are mainly classified as dinoflagellates to the genus Symbiodinium sp. The advantage of symbiosis is based on adaptations of transport and the exchange of nutritional resources, which allow it to be spread all over the tropical and some temperate oceans. Their existence over millions of years depends on the ability of the zooxanthellae, the host, and the holobiont as a whole unit to change, acclimate, and adapt in order to survive under developmental and stress.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCoral Reefs
Subtitle of host publicationAn Ecosystem in Transition
PublisherSpringer Netherlands
Number of pages20
ISBN (Print)9789400701137
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Coral
  • adaptation
  • carbon
  • host factor
  • symbiodinium
  • zooxanthellae

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science (all)
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (all)


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