Aplysinidae Carter, 1875

Gómez, Patricia, González-Acosta, Bárbara, Sánchez-Ortíz, Carlos, Hoffman, Zvi & Hernández-Guerrero, Claudia J., 2018, Amended definitions for Aplysinidae and Aplysina (Porifera, Demospongiae, Verongiida): on three new species from a remarkable population in the Gulf of California, Zootaxa 4455 (2), pp. 322-342: 326

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Aplysinidae Carter, 1875


Family Aplysinidae Carter, 1875  (amended after Bergquist & Cook 2002)

Definition. Most members of this taxon have a regular anastomosing skeleton of polygonal meshes. Occasionally, some members exhibit a reduced anastomosed mesh restricted to the internal choanosome, or atrium wall, from which dendritic fibers depart towards the periphery of the body. Fibers are amber colored, with a laminated bark and dark granular pith. Tubular and massive lobular forms are frequent, but encrusting and stalked forms are also present. Their texture reflects the collagenous nature of the matrix. Pigmentation is frequently yellow or purple outside, and yellow or tan inside; however, greenish, violet, and pinkish colors may also be present, sometimes with a creamy or reddish purple tinge. The pigments oxidize rapidly in most species upon death or damage, to a deep purple or blue almost black. They produce bioactive compounds in the form of brominated tyrosine derivatives. Choanocyte chambers are diplodal, small, and spherical (amended from Bergquist & Cook 2002).

Remarks. The definition of Bergquist & Cook (2002) has been amended to permit inclusion of skeletal features observed in two new species reported below, which besides the typical reticulation of most Aplysina  spp, still possess an outer dendritic skeleton connecting the deeper reticulated choanosome to the surface of the sponge.