Ingestion and clearance rates of the red Noctiluca scintillans fed on the toxic dinoflagellate Alexandrium minutum (Halim)
Keywords: toxins, dinoflagellates, Noctiluca scintillans, Paralytic Shellfish Toxins (PST), Ingestion and clearance rates
In this study, we evaluated the ingestion and clearance rates of the heterotrophic dinoflagellate Noctiluca scintillans (Macartney) fed on the toxic microalgae Alexandrium minutum Halim in laboratory cultures. Specimens of the red form of N. scintillans were collected in the Rio de Vigo and kept in culture. The results showed that N. scintillans actively fed on A. minutum, with maximum ingestion rates of 0.37 mu g C ind(-1) day(-1), showing that there was non-satiated feeding by N. scintillans on A. minutum. The mean cellular toxin content of A. minutum in the stock culture ranged from 2.57 to 3.44 fmol cell(-1) The HPLC analyses of the extracts from N. scintillans fed with 4 different abundances of A. minutum revealed no detectable amounts of toxin. This suggested that although N. scintillans was able to ingest a toxic dinoflagellate such as A. minutum into its vacuoles, the ingested toxin was bioconverted or excreted by Noctiluca. Our findings support the theory that Noctiluca may inflict grazing pressure on the growth of Paralytic Shellfish Toxin (PST) species in the field, and could therefore play an important role as a regulator against PST-producing phytoplankton. This is the first report about grazing rates of N. scintillans on Alexandrium cells. (C) 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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|Ingestion and clearance rates of the red Noctiluca scintillans fed on the toxic dinoflagellate Alexandrium minutum (Halim)
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