Distribution and abundance of azaspiracid-producing dinophyte species and their toxins in North Atlantic and North Sea waters in summer 2018


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stephan.wietkamp [ at ] awi.de

Abstract

Representatives of the marine dinophyte family Amphidomataceae produce lipophilic phycotoxins called azaspiracids (AZA) which may cause azaspiracid shellfish poisoning (AZP) in humans after consumption of contaminated seafood. Three of the four known toxigenic species are observed frequently in the eastern North Atlantic. In 2018, a research survey was performed to strengthen knowledge on the distribution and abundance of toxigenic Amphidomataceae and their respective toxins in Irish coastal waters and in the North Sea. Species-specific quantification of the three toxigenic species (Azadinium spinosum, Azadinium poporum and Amphidoma languida) was based on recently developed qPCR assays, whose performance was successfully validated and tested with specificity tests and spike experiments. The multi-method approach of on-board live microscopy, qPCR assays and chemical AZA-analysis revealed the presence of Amphidomataceae in the North Atlantic including the three targeted toxigenic species and their respective AZA analogues (AZA-1, -2, -33, -38, -39). Azadinium spinosum was detected at the majority of Irish stations with a peak density of 8.3 x 104 cells L-1 and AZA (AZA-1, -2, -33) abundances up to 1,274 pg L-1. Amphidoma languida was also present at most Irish stations but appeared in highest abundance in a bloom at a central North Sea station with a density of 1.2 x 105 cells L-1 and an AZA (AZA-38, -39) abundances of 618 pg L-1. Azadinium poporum was detected sporadically at the Irish south coast and North Sea and was rather low in abundance during this study. The results confirmed the wide distribution and frequent occurrence of the target species in the North Atlantic area and revealed, for the first time, bloom abundances of toxigenic Amphidomataceae in this area. This emphasizes the importance of future studies and monitoring of amphidomatacean species and their respective AZA analogues in the North Atlantic.



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ISI/Scopus peer-reviewed
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Published
Eprint ID
52374
DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0235015

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Wietkamp, S. , Krock, B. , Clarke, D. , Voß, D. , Salas, R. , Kilcoyne, J. and Tillmann, U. (2020): Distribution and abundance of azaspiracid-producing dinophyte species and their toxins in North Atlantic and North Sea waters in summer 2018 , PLoS ONE, 15 (6) . doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0235015


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