Chondrus crispus (C. crispus), also known as Irish moss or carrageen moss, is a species of red algae known as intertidal (located on the part of the shore where the tide alternates). The maximum size of this seaweed is about 15 cm, it is red in colour with sometimes blue reflections.
It is a very common alga used for industrial production of polysaccharides of its cell wall, used as texture agents for food uses. C. crispus is also an emerging model for the study of marine autotrophic multicellular organisms.
Indeed, intertidal algae are subject to a very dynamic environment with brutal changes linked to the immersion and emergence of the tides and, in addition to meteorological changes, wave effects. They are therefore interesting models for studying responses to environmental stresses and are also used in studies on the evolution of eukaryotes (in particular, algae), or the host-agent relationship.
The benefits of this algae for researchers and industrialists are many: novel biomolecules for dairy products, beauty creams and medicines.
There are two distinct stages: a haploid sexual stage (gametophyte stage) and a diploid asexual stage (sporophyte stage). However, a third intermediate stage occurs when the gametes produced by the male and female gametophytes fuse to produce a diploid carposporophyte, developed on the female gametophyte after fertilization.
Carposporophyte produces carpospores that develop in the sporophyte. The sporophyte then undergoes meiosis to produce haploid tetraspores (male or female) that develop in gametophytes.
“Genome structure and metabolic features in the red seaweed Chondrus crispus shed light on evolution of the Archaeplastida”, Collén, J. et al.,