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Name derivation:

Central prow (as of a ship) -- proro- (prow), centrum (central)


Prorocentrum micans Ehrenberg 1834: There are 117 species (of which 81 have been accepted taxonomically. (Guiry, Guiry 2013)

Order Prorocentrales;  Family Prorocentraceae


Unicells, spheroid to pyriform, desmokont (two anterior flagella), armored with two lateral valves. Some have an anterior winged spine or “tooth”, others have various surface decorations (various patterns of short spines or pores).

Similar genera:



Marine plankton and benthos.


Many benthic species are toxic (Steidinger and Jangen 1996), producing okadaic acid associated with diarrheic shellfish poisoning (DSP).



Ehrenberg, C.G.  1834.  Dritter Beitrag zur Erkenntniss grosser Organisation in der Richtung des kleinsten Raumes.  Abhandlungen der Königlichen Akademie der Wissenschaften zu Berlin 1833: 145-336, pls I-XIII.

Guiry, M.D. & Guiry, G.M. 2013.  AlgaeBase. World-wide electronic publication, National University of Ireland, Galway.  http://www.algaebase.org; searched on 8 November 2013.

Steidinger, K.A., and K. Jangen 1996. Dinoflagellates. In: Identifying Marine Phytoplankton. C.R. Tomas, ed. (pp387-584).