The cellular structure of Porphyridium cruentum was studied with both light and electron microscope. The photosynthetic plastid in this red alga was found to be structurally similar to that in the Chlorophyceae and higher green plants. The phycobilins, as well as the chlorophyll, seem to be associated with the lamellae of the plastid.
The pyrenoid, a region of low lamellar density, contains no tubules, and does not appear to function in synthesis or storage of reserve material. Grains of floridean starch are located in the cytoplasm, outside the plastid. Typical mitochondrial organelles were not observed.
The nucleus is eccentric, and contains a nucleolus located on the inner face of the nucleus, nearest the plastid. The schedule for staining the nucleus is given in detail. Other cell structures (sheath, dictyosomes, etc.) are described.
Growing cells in light of intensity leads to disruption of the parallel arrangement of the lamellar characteristic of cells grown in moderate light.