Diversity, distribution, and azaspiracids of Amphidomataceae (Dinophyceae) along the Norwegian coast

Urban.Tillmann [ at ] awi.de


Azaspiracids (AZA) are a group of lipophilic polyether compounds which have been implicated in shellfish poisoning incidents around Europe. They are produced by a few species of the dinophycean genera Azadinium and Amphidoma (Amphidomataceae). The presence of AZA toxins in Norway is well documented, but knowledge of the distribution and diversity of Azadinium and other Amphidomataceae along the Norwegian coast is rather limited and poorly documented. On a research survey along the Norwegian coast in 2015 from the Skagerrak in the South to Trondheimsfjorden in the North, plankton samples from 67 stations were analysed for the presence of Azadinium and Amphidoma and their respective AZA by on-board live microscopy, real-time PCR assays specific for Amphidomataceae, and liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC–MS/MS). Microscopy using live samples and positive real-time PCR assays using a general family probe and two species specific probes revealed the presence of Amphidomataceae distributed throughout the sampling area. Overall abundance was low, however, and was in agreement with a lack of detectable AZA in plankton samples. Single cell isolation and morphological and molecular characterisation of established strains revealed the presence of 7 amphidomatacean species (Azadiniun spinosum, Az. poporum, Az. obesum, Az. dalianense, Az. trinitatum, Az. polongum, Amphidoma languida) in the area. Azaspiracids were produced by the known AZA producing species Az. spinosum, Az. poporum and Am. languida only. LC–MS/MS analysis further revealed that Norwegian strains produce previously unreported AZA for Norway (AZA-11 by Az. spinosum, AZA-37 by Az. poporum, AZA-38 and AZA-39 by Am. languida), and also four novel compounds (AZA-50, -51 by Az. spinosum, AZA-52, -53 by Am. languida), whose structural properties are described and which now can be included in existing analytical protocols. A maximum likelihood analysis of concatenated rDNA regions (SSU, ITS1-ITS2, partial LSU) showed that the strains of Az. spinosum fell in two well supported clades, where most but not all new Norwegian strains formed the new Ribotype B. Ribotype differentiation was supported by a minor morphological difference with respect to the presence/absence of a rim around the pore plate, and was consistently reflected by different AZA profiles. Strains of Az. spinosum from ribotype A produce AZA-1, -2 and -33, whereas the new strains of ribotype B produce mainly AZA-11 and AZA-51. Significant sequence differences between both Az. spinosum ribotypes underline the need to redesign the currently used qPCR probes in order to detect all AZA producing Az. spinosum. The results generally underline the conclusion that for the Norwegian coast area it is important that amphidomatacean species are taken into account in future studies and monitoring programs.

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DOI 10.1016/j.hal.2018.08.011

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Tillmann, U. , Edvardsen, B. , Krock, B. , Smith, K. F. , Paterson, R. and Voß, D. (2018): Diversity, distribution, and azaspiracids of Amphidomataceae (Dinophyceae) along the Norwegian coast , Harmful Algae, 80 , pp. 15-34 . doi: 10.1016/j.hal.2018.08.011

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