The amoeboflagellate Naegleria was one of the first organisms in which de novo basal body/centriole assembly was documented. When in its flagellate form, this single-celled protist has two flagella that are templated by two basal bodies. Each of these basal bodies is structurally well conserved, with triplet microtubules and well-defined proximal cartwheel structures, similar to most other eukaryotic centrioles. The basal bodies are anchored to the nucleus by a single, long striated rootlet. The Naegleria genome encodes many conserved basal body genes whose expression is induced prior to basal body assembly. Because of the rapid and synchronous differentiation from centriole-less amoebae to temporary flagellates with basal bodies, Naegleria offers one of the most promising systems to study de novo basal body assembly, as well as the mechanisms regulating the number of centrioles assembled per cell.