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Toxicon 2012 Nov 01;606:1203-14. doi: 10.1016/j.toxicon.2012.08.005.
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Toxicity assessment of Amphidinium carterae, Coolia cfr. monotis and Ostreopsis cfr. ovata (Dinophyta) isolated from the northern Ionian Sea (Mediterranean Sea).

Pagliara P , Caroppo C .

In many coastal areas the abundant proliferation of microalgae producing biotoxins determines the occurrence of Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs). Their presence in temperate waters is well documented and often associated with marine toxin-derived disease. The occurrence and toxicity of three harmful microalgae (Amphidinium carterae, Coolia cfr. monotis and Ostreopsis cfr. ovata) from the northern Ionian Sea (Mediterranean Sea) is hereby reported. The three dinoflagellates were sampled both on macroalgae and water and their morphology and occurrence were compared to those of other Mediterranean sites. The toxicity of the three cultured strains was tested by Artemia salina and hemolysis tests and their effects on the first stages of the sea urchin development was also evaluated. The contemporary presence of the three species inhibited the in vitro sea urchin embryonic development. But this action could be ascribed to the sole Ostreopsis as the addition of the single species to the sea urchins embryos evidenced no effects in presence of Amphidinium or Coolia cells, and an irregular segmentation in presence of Ostreopsis. In particular, this latter species exerted a cytotoxic effect in a dose-dependent manner, with a production of deformed embryos even at very low cell concentration (42 cells mL⁻¹). Nevertheless, when algal cell lysate was added, some effects on the sea urchin development was detected for each dinoflagellate, and also in this case Ostreopsis has proved to be the most toxic species. However, the lysate of Amphidinium and Ostreopsis strongly affects the A. salina nauplii vitality, while the hemolytic activity was very low for Amphidinium and Coolia lysate and very strong for Ostreopsis. Our results highlight the importance to monitoring the presence of these dinoflagellates whose effects may also be reflected on the early life stages of marine organisms, especially those species that are important from both an ecological and economic point of view, as the sea urchins are.

PubMed ID: 22925842
Article link: Toxicon

Genes referenced: LOC100887844 LOC115919910