From a random amplified polymorphism cDNA study using vegetative, precystic and mature resting cysts of the ciliate Colpoda inflata, a stage‐specific fragment was isolated from the resting cyst cDNA population. This fragment was used as an encystment probe to study the corresponding mRNA expression during this eukaryotic cell differentiation process. This transcript is accumulated in the resting cyst of this ciliate, and it is the first time that accumulation of specific mRNA molecules associated with the ciliate cryptobiosis process is reported. The meaning of this stored mRNA in microbial cryptobiotic stages is discussed.
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