The thalli of algae show a huge range of variation in structure and organization. It varies from microscopic unicellular forms to giant seaweeds such as Macrocystis that measure up to 100 meters long. Few of them form filaments or colonies. The unicellular form might be motile as in Chlamydomonas or non-motile as in Chlorella. Mainly algae contain filamentous thallus. Example: Spirogyra. The filaments might be branched. Such filamentous form might be free floating or joined to a substratum. The attachment of filament is generally affected via a simple modification of the basal cell into holdfast. Several of the Algae are macroscopic. Example: Sargassum, Caulerpa, Laminaria, Fucus and so on, where the plant body is big. In Macrocystis it is distinguished into root, stem and leaf-like structures.
The chloroplasts of algae exists a varied structure. For example: they are ribbon-like in Spirogyra, cup shaped in Chlamydomonas, and star shaped in Zygnema.
Figure: Thallus Organization in Algae
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