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Projects

Are Growth and Toxicity of the Dinoflagellate Alex...

Blooms of Alexandrium fundyense result in economic losses to fisheries, aquaculture, and pose public health risks. Typically, A. fundyense growth and toxicity are seen as dependent on light, temperature, and ...
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Developing Practical and Affordable Water Filtrati...

We are testing the use of local, natural bacteria to destroy cyanotoxins. These toxins are produced by freshwater cyanobacteria, also known as blue-green algae, and they contaminate municipal water supplies ...
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Establishing the Sources of Toxic Cyanobacteria Bl...

Although phosphorus typically limits the growth of freshwater phytoplankton populations, little is known about how the common toxic alga Microcystis aeruginosa responds to variations in phosphorus concentrations and sources. Our ...
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Implementing the Karenia “Tricorder” to Improve Re...

The toxic dinoflagellate Karenia brevis blooms annually in the Gulf of Mexico and negatively impacts human and ecosystem health through production of brevetoxins. A rapid, sensitive, specific assay for the ...
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Integrating Cell and Toxin Cycles of the Dinoflage...

Blooms of Karlodinium veneficum can produce fish-killing toxins called karlotoxins. Toxicity varies over time, with karlotoxins increasing prior to blooms and under growth-limiting conditions. We are testing the theory that ...
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Investigating Domoic Acid Biosynthesis and Toxic B...

The marine diatom Pseudo-nitzschia (PN) produces domoic acid (DA), a neurotoxin that has caused widespread human poisoning along the northeast and northwest coasts of the contiguous U.S. Researchers have investigated ...
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News

Toxicity of the Dinoflagellate Alexandrium Control...

A new study supported by NCCOS shows that the presence of zooplankton grazers dramatically increases toxin production in the marine dinoflagellate Alexandrium catenella, a species notorious for its paralytic shellfish ...
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Are Benthic Cyanobacteria a Source of Toxic Blooms...

Lyngbya cyanobacteria growing on lake bottom. Credit: NCSU Water Management Program and Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration Foundation. In August, roughly 50 experts from a range of scientific disciplines gathered at the ...
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Portable Red Tide Detector Debuts at NOAA Emerging...

A portable, hand-held instrument that uses genetics to detect the red tide-causing organism Karenia brevis in the field was featured at the second NOAA Emerging Technologies for Observations Workshop. The device, dubbed ...
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Tiny yet Toxic: Dinoflagellate Karlodinium venefic...

Relatively unknown and taxonomically confusing until the last few decades, the tiny but toxic dinoflagellate, Karlodinium veneficum, can produce dense blooms and fish-killing toxins. K. veneficum is a small chlorophyll-containing ...
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Volunteers Train to Monitor Florida Red Tide in Re...

Citizen volunteers and college students are evaluating an NCCOS-funded portable sensor that easily and accurately calculates the number of Karenia brevis cells in a water sample, the algae that causes ...
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NOAA Supports Florida’s Monitoring of Brown ...

NCCOS has approved a Harmful Algal Bloom Event Response project that will enhance state efforts to monitor and assess the extent of an active bloom of Aureoumbra lagunensis algae, also ...
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Study Supports EPA to Control Both Nitrogen and Ph...

One of the most common bloom-forming cyanobacteria (blue green algae) in freshwater ecosystems is Microcystis, which produces the liver toxin microcystin. Like many cyanobacteria, blooms of Microcystisareassociated with higher temperatures ...
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NCCOS Works to Track and Eliminate Freshwater Alga...

A new study has documented the fate of microcystins - the most common of the freshwater blue-green algae toxins - and the challenges for monitoring them.The study is part of ...
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Algal Toxins Pose Health Risk to Dogs

Harmful algal bloom (HAB) toxins, including microcystins, pose health threats and even death fordogs and other pets exposed to the contaminated water, explains a new educational brochure from the New ...
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Bacteria Isolate Degrades Harmful Algal Toxins in ...

Cyanobacterial harmful algal blooms ('cyanoHABs') occur worldwide - causing detrimental effects to ecosystems and local economies - and can produce toxins that pose threats to human health and limit potable ...
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Data & Publications

A Bayesian Semiparametric Regression Model for Joint Analysis of Microbiome Data

The successional dynamics of microbial communities are influenced by the synergistic interactions of physical and biological factors. In our motivating data, ocean microbiome samples were collected from the Santa Cruz Municipal Wharf, Monterey Bay at multiple time points and then ...
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Characterization of Acetyl-CoA Carboxylases in the Basal Dinoflagellate Amphidinium carterae

Dinoflagellates make up a diverse array of fatty acids and polyketides. A necessary precursor for their synthesis is malonyl-CoA formed by carboxylating acetyl CoA using the enzyme acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC). To date, information on dinoflagellate ACC is limited. Through transcriptome ...
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Corrigendum to “Status, Causes and Controls of Cyanobacterial Blooms in Lake Erie”

The authors regret that, during analyses of various data sets, we inadvertently used TKN (Total Kjeldahl Nitrogen) in place of TN (Total Nitrogen) for the Maumee River tributary. We now present the corrected data from the original Fig. 5 (as ...
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Identification of a vacuolar proton channel that triggers the bioluminescent flash in dinoflagellates

In 1972, J. Woodland Hastings and colleagues predicted the existence of a proton selective channel (HV1) that opens in response to depolarizing voltage across the vacuole membrane of bioluminescent dinoflagellates and conducts protons into specialized luminescence compartments (scintillons), thereby causing ...
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Karmitoxin: An Amine-Containing Polyhydroxy-Polyene Toxin from the Marine Dinoflagellate Karlodinium armiger

Marine algae from the genus Karlodinium are known to be involved in fish-killing events worldwide. Here we report for the first time the chemistry and bioactivity of a natural product from the newly described mixotrophic dinoflagellate Karlodinium armiger. Our work ...
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LC-MS/MS Detection of Karlotoxins Reveals New Variants in Strains of the Marine Dinoflagellate Karlodinium veneficum from the Ebro Delta (NW Mediterranean)

A liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) method was developed for the detection and quantitation of karlotoxins in the selected reaction monitoring (SRM) mode. This novel method was based upon the analysis of purified karlotoxins (KcTx-1, KmTx-2, 44-oxo-KmTx-2, KmTx-5), one amphidinol ...
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Mesozooplankton and Microzooplankton Grazing During Cyanobacterial Blooms in the Western Basin of Lake Erie

Lake Erie is the most socioeconomically important and productive of the Laurentian (North American) Great Lakes. Since the mid-1990s cyanobacterial blooms dominated primarily by Microcystis have emerged to become annual, late summer events in the western basin of Lake Erie ...
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Molecular Response of the Bloom-Forming Cyanobacterium, Microcystis aeruginosa, to Phosphorus Limitation

Cyanobacteria blooms caused by species such as Microcystis have become commonplace in many freshwater ecosystems. Although phosphorus (P) typically limits the growth of freshwater phytoplankton populations, little is known regarding the molecular response of Microcystis to variation in P concentrations ...
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Pilot-scale outdoor photobioreactor culture of the marine dinoflagellate Karlodinium veneficum: Production of a karlotoxins-rich extract

A pilot-scale bioprocess was developed for the production of karlotoxin-enriched extracts of the marine algal dinoflagellate Karlodinium veneficum. A bubble column and a flat-panel photobioreactors (80–281 L) were used for comparative assessment of growth. Flow hydrodynamics and energy dissipation rates (EDR) ...
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Status, Causes and Controls of Cyanobacterial Blooms in Lake Erie

The Laurentian Great Lakes are among the most prominent sources of fresh water in the world. Lake Erie's infamous cyanobacterial blooms have, however, threatened the health of this valuable freshwater resource for decades. Toxic blooms dominated by the cyanobacterium Microcystis ...
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