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Harmful Algae ; 89: 101671, 2019 11.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-31672230


Species of the benthic dinoflagellate Gambierdiscus produce polyether neurotoxins that caused ciguatera fish/shellfish poisoning in human. The toxins enter marine food webs by foraging of herbivores on the biotic substrates like macroalgae that host the toxic dinoflagellates. Interaction of Gambierdiscus and their macroalgal substrate hosts is believed to shape the tendency of substrate preferences and habitat specialization. This was supported by studies that manifested epiphytic preferences and behaviors in Gambierdiscus species toward different macroalgal hosts. To further examine the supposition, a laboratory-based experimental study was conducted to examine the growth, epiphytic behaviors and host preferences of three Gambierdiscus species towards four macroalgal hosts over a culture period of 40 days. The dinoflagellates Gambierdiscus balechii, G. caribaeus, and a new ribotype, herein designated as Gambierdiscus type 7 were initially identified based on the thecal morphology and molecular characterization. Our results showed that Gambierdiscus species tested in this study exhibited higher growth rates in the presence of macroalgal hosts. Growth responses and attachment behaviors, however, differed among different species and strains of Gambierdiscus over different macroalgal substrate hosts. Cells of Gambierdiscus mostly attached to substrate hosts at the beginning of the experiments but detached at the later time. Localized Gambierdiscus-host interactions, as demonstrated in this study, could help to better inform efforts of sampling and monitoring of this benthic toxic dinoflagellate.

Intoxicação por Ciguatera , Dinoflagelados , Alga Marinha , Animais , Ecossistema , Filogenia
Harmful Algae ; 78: 56-68, 2018 09.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-30196925


Few studies have investigated the effect of fine-scale habitat differences on the dynamics of benthic harmful dinoflagellate assemblages. To determine how these microhabitat differences affect the distribution and abundance of the major benthic harmful dinoflagellate genera in a tropical coral reef ecosystem, a field study was undertaken between April-September 2015 and January 2016 on the shallow reef flat of the fringing reef of Rawa Island, Terengganu, Malaysia. Sampling of benthic dinoflagellates was carried out using an artificial substrate sampling method (fiberglass screens). Benthic microhabitats surrounding the sampling screens were characterized simultaneously from photographs of a 0.25-m2 quadrat based on categories of bottom substrate types. Five taxonomic groups of benthic dinoflagellates, Ostreopsis, Gambierdiscus, Prorocentrum, Amphidinium, and Coolia were identified, and cells were enumerated using a light microscope. The results showed Gambierdiscus was less abundant than other genera throughout the study period, with maximum abundance of 1.2 × 103 cells 100 cm-2. While most taxa were present on reefs with high coral cover, higher cell abundances were observed in reefs with high turf algal cover and coral rubble, with the exception of Ostreopsis, where the abundance reached a maximum of 3.4 × 104 cells 100 cm-2 in habitats with high coral cover. Microhabitat heterogeneity was identified as a key factor governing the benthic harmful dinoflagellate assemblages and may account for much of the observed variability in dominant taxa. This finding has significant implications for the role of variability in the benthic harmful algal bloom (BHAB) outbreaks and the potential in identifying BHAB-related toxin transfer pathways and the key vectors in the food webs.

Recifes de Corais , Dinoflagelados/fisiologia , Biota , Malásia , Dinâmica Populacional
Harmful Algae ; 67: 107-118, 2017 07.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-28755713


Recent molecular phylogenetic studies of Gambierdiscus species flagged several new species and genotypes, thus leading to revitalizing its systematics. The inter-relationships of clades revealed by the primary sequence information of nuclear ribosomal genes (rDNA), however, can sometimes be equivocal, and therefore, in this study, the taxonomic status of a ribotype, Gambierdiscus sp. type 6, was evaluated using specimens collected from the original locality, Marakei Island, Republic of Kiribati; and specimens found in Rawa Island, Peninsular Malaysia, were further used for comparison. Morphologically, the ribotype cells resembled G. scabrosus, G. belizeanus, G. balechii, G. cheloniae and G. lapillus in thecal ornamentation, where the thecal surfaces are reticulate-foveated, but differed from G. scabrosus by its hatchet-shaped Plate 2', and G. belizeanus by the asymmetrical Plate 3'. To identify the phylogenetic relationship of this ribotype, a large dataset of the large subunit (LSU) and small subunit (SSU) rDNAs were compiled, and performed comprehensive analyses, using Bayesian-inference, maximum-parsimony, and maximum-likelihood, for the latter two incorporating the sequence-structure information of the SSU rDNA. Both the LSU and SSU rDNA phylogenetic trees displayed an identical topology and supported the hypothesis that the relationship between Gambierdiscus sp. type 6 and G. balechii was monophyletic. As a result, the taxonomic status of Gambierdiscus sp. type 6 was revised, and assigned as Gambierdiscus balechii. Toxicity analysis using neuroblastoma N2A assay confirmed that the Central Pacific strains were toxic, ranging from 1.1 to 19.9 fg P-CTX-1 eq cell-1, but no toxicity was detected in a Western Pacific strain. This suggested that the species might be one of the species contributing to the high incidence rate of ciguatera fish poisoning in Marakei Island.

Ciguatoxinas/toxicidade , Dinoflagelados/classificação , Filogenia , Filogeografia , Sequência de Bases , Tamanho Celular , DNA Ribossômico/química , DNA Ribossômico/genética , Dinoflagelados/citologia , Dinoflagelados/ultraestrutura , Funções Verossimilhança , Conformação de Ácido Nucleico