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Related to Stromatolites: Cambrian Explosion


A usually rounded or columnar sedimentary structure consisting of alternating layers of carbonate or silicate sediment and fossilized microbial mats, produced over geologic time by the trapping, binding, or precipitating of minerals by groups of microorganisms, primarily cyanobacteria.

[Late Latin strōma, strōmat-, covering; see stroma + -lite.]

stro·mat′o·lit′ic (-măt′l-ĭt′ĭk) adj.


(Palaeontology) a rocky mass consisting of layers of calcareous material and sediment formed by the prolific growth of cyanobacteria: such structures date back to Precambrian times
[C20: from Greek, from strōma covering + -lite]
stromatolitic adj


(stroʊˈmæt lˌaɪt)

a laminated calcareous fossil structure built by marine algae and having a rounded or columnar form.
[< German Stromatolith (1908) < New Latin stromat-, s. of stroma stroma + -o- -o- + German -lith -lith; see -lite]
stro•mat`o•lit′ic (-ˈɪt ɪk) adj.
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References in periodicals archive ?
A renovated interest in the study of stromatolites rose from the new interdisciplinary approaches of geobiology dealing with biomineralization and microbe-mineral interactions (e.g., Reid et al., 2000; Weiner and Dove, 2003; Franke and Bazylinski, 2003; Visscher and Stolz, 2005; Dupraz et al., 2009; Spadafora et al., 2010).
(6) Thinly laminated rock structures termed "stromatolites" are located in rocks of the same age and younger, extending up into the present.
But such stromatolites, which are different from the structures that Noffke studies, can also be the work of natural, non-living processes.
Geologists, said the speaker, divide the coastal area into supratidal sabkha, intertidal where the microbial mats otherwise known as stromatolites occur, and lowermost intertidal to shallow subtidal which includes shallow lagoon and tidal-channel belts.
The calcified 7 meter microbial mats residing in Lake Joyce in the McMurdo Dry Valleys in Antarctica offer a unique opportunity to investigate the formation of structures that are analogous to ancient stromatolites. The diversity of the eubacterial communities in these mats was determined using culture-independent community DNA.
They cite rock formations that have not only the skewed carbon ratios but also inclusions that look like bacterial cells and rock formations similar to present-day stromatolites formed by huge, long-lived colonies of cyanobacteria.
It is now recognized that large-scale, sophisticated cooperative efforts--complete with a division/combination of labor--are commonplace among bacteria and can be traced back at least to the origin of the so-called stromatolites (rocky mineral deposits) that were constructed by bacterial colonies some 3.5 billion years ago (Ben-Jacob et al.
Ancient coastal dwelling colonies of algae known as Stromatolites are preserved within this layer and indicate that the area was once coastal.