Amoeba proteus, Amoeba dubia, and Chaos chaos all contain similar plate-like and bipyramidal cytoplasmic crystals. Isolated crystals, purified by recrystallization from water, yield plate-like crystals which have been shown to be identical with synthesized carbonyl diurea (triuret) with regard to physicochemical properties, elemental analysis, x-ray diffraction patterns, infrared spectra, and optical properties. The birefringent plates found in the cytoplasm are carbonyl diurea. While the exact composition of the isotropic plates and of the bipyramids is not clear at present, the major constituent of these crystal types is also carbonyl diurea. It is suggested that carbonyl diurea is a nitrogen excretion product, not previously found in living organisms, and probably represents an end product of purine metabolism in amebae.

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