Two types of ubiquitin genes were isolated from the marine red alga Gracilaria lemaneiformis: a ubiquitin-52 amino acid fusion protein gene, and a 6-unit polyubiquitin gene. Alignment of polyubiquitins among three red algae (Gracilaria lemaneiformis, Gracilaria verrucosa, Aglaothamnion neglectum) and other species revealed that there were six ubiquitin repeats in all three red algae polyubiquitins, and that glutamine was the final amino acid residue in the terminal repeat of the polyprotein in the two Gracilaria sequences. Southern blot analysis revealed that both genes were encoded by low-copy number genes. Semi-quantitative RT-PCR was performed to investigate the expression of these two genes in two phases of G. lemaneiformis. The result revealed that the monoubiquitin was phase-relative, and upregulated in tetrasporophytes compared with female gametophytes. The polyubiquitin gene was expressed at similar levels in both phases.