Abstract

Flow cytometry is used to measure dilution-induced changes in the optical properties of Dunaliella tertiolecta—light scatter, cell fluorescence, and refractive index. Observed changes in cell optical properties are compared to simultaneous measures of cell volume and count, extracted chlorophyll a concentration, and the 14C uptake rate. Flow cytometric measurements reveal short-term dilution effects (within 1 h of dilution) that are not evident in other morphological or physiological measurements such as cell volume, extracted chlorophyll a concentration, and 14C uptake rate. Data are presented which suggest that these short-term changes in cell optical properties are the result of changes in the real component of refractive index, possibly due to a rapid and temporary rearrangement of the internal cellular structure. Long-term changes are observed in time series measurements of cell volume and count, extracted chlorophyll a concentration, and 14C uptake rate.

© 1988 Optical Society of America

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