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Golden Algae Toxin Identified, Detection and Monitoring Tools Developed

Researchers finally identified the main toxic compounds produced by Prymnesium parvum, also known as “golden tide.” A fish-killing algae, this organism had historically affected aquaculture and marine systems worldwide, but now also frequently plagues popular fishing spots in the western United States, such as in Arizona last month. Identifying these toxins as well as their primary mode of action allowed researchers from the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science to develop highly sensitive analytical detection and monitoring tools.

Using NCCOS’s dedicated Nuclear Magnetic Resonance and chemistry facilities, scientists isolated, purified and structurally characterized the toxins. They also identified the critical role of environmental factors such as metal concentration and water pH that can dramatically alter the organism’s toxicity.

Publications

Title: Identification of Toxic Fatty Acid Amides Isolated from the Harmful Alga Prymnesium parvum carter
Reference: HARALG832
Journal title: Harmful Algae
Corresponding author: Dr. Peter D.R. Moeller
First author: Dr. Matthew J. Bertin
Online publication complete: 30-SEP-2012
DOI information: 10.1016/j.hal.2012.08.005

Title: The Contribution of Fatty Acid Amides to Prymnesium parvum Carter Toxicity
Reference: HARALG831
Journal title: Harmful Algae
Corresponding author: Dr. Peter D.R. Moeller
First author: Dr. Matthew J. Bertin
Online publication complete: 26-SEP-2012
DOI information: 10.1016/j.hal.2012.08.004

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Shorter web link for sharing: http://coastalscience.noaa.gov/news/?p=7571

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