Azadinium poporum from the Argentine Continental Shelf, Southwestern Atlantic, produces azaspiracid-2 and azaspiracid-2 phosphate

Urban.Tillmann [ at ]


The marine dinophycean genus Azadinium has been identified as the primary source of azaspiracids (AZA), a group of lipophilic phycotoxins known to accumulate in shellfish. Blooms of Azadinium in the southern Atlantic off Argentina have been described from the 1990s, but due to a lack of cultures, the diversity of South-Atlantic Azadinium has not yet been fully explored and their toxin production potential is completely unknown. During a spring 2010 research cruise covering the El Rinco´n (ER) estuarine system (North Patagonian coast, Argentina, Southwestern Atlantic) a search was conducted for the presence of Azadinium. Although neither Azadinium cells nor AZA in field plankton samples were detected, 10 clonal strains of Azadinium poporum were successfuly established by incubation of sediment samples. Argentinean A. poporum were more variable in size and shape than the type description but conformed to it by the presence of multiple pyrenoids with starch sheath, in plate pattern and arrangement, and in the position of the ventral pore located on the left side of the pore plate. In contrast to all previous description of A. poporum, isolates of the Argentinean A. poporum possessed a distinct field of pores on the second antapical plate. Conspecificity of the Argentinean isolates with A. poporum was confirmed by molecular phylogeny of concatenated ITS and LSU rDNA sequences, where all Argentinean isolates together with some Chinese A. poporum strains formed a well-supported ribotype clade within A. poporum. All isolates produced AZA with the same profile, consisting of AZA-2 as the major compound and, to a lesser extent, its phosphated form. This is the first report of a phosphated marine algal toxin. This first confirmation of the presence of AZA producing Azadinium in the Argentinean coastal area underlines the risk of AZA shellfish contamination episodes in the Southwestern Atlantic region.

Item Type
Primary Division
Primary Topic
Publication Status
Eprint ID
DOI 10.1016/j.hal.2015.11.001

Cite as
Tillmann, U. , Borel, C. M. , Barrera, F. , Lara, R. J. , Krock, B. , Almandoz, G. O. , Witt, M. and Trefault, N. (2016): Azadinium poporum from the Argentine Continental Shelf, Southwestern Atlantic, produces azaspiracid-2 and azaspiracid-2 phosphate , Harmful Algae, 51 , pp. 40-55 . doi: 10.1016/j.hal.2015.11.001

[thumbnail of 2016_Tillmann_HA_AZA.pdf]

Download (3MB) | Preview
Cite this document as:

Add to AnyAdd to TwitterAdd to FacebookAdd to LinkedinAdd to PinterestAdd to Email


Geographical region

Research Platforms


Edit Item Edit Item