Giardia lamblia diplomonad

Diplomonads are unicellular eukaryotes that have flagella, most of which are parasitic. Diplomonads used to be considered one of the most primitive eukaryotes and some thought that they might have been the link between eukaryotes and prokaryotes because though diplomonads are very characteristic eukaryotes, one main difference is that they lack mitochondria.

Some diplomonads are free-living and may be common in stagnant fresh water, but most are commensal in the intestines of animals. Some are parasitic and cause disease; in humans, the diplomonad Giardia infects the intestine and can cause diarrhea. Diplomonads have multiple flagella, two unfused haploid nuclei and reduced mitochondria. Otherwise they are very diverse, including a wide variety of pathogens and several free-living forms.

Copyright: MicrobeWiki

Giardia lamblia diplomonad
Giardia lamblia diplomonad
Image credit: CDC
Giardia diplomonad art on copper
Copyright: Cheryl Safren

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