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Nutritional and Photophysiological Approaches to Identifying the Niche of Gambierdiscus: Insight into the Ecology of Ciguatera Fish Poisoning

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Date Issued:
2016
Abstract:
seafood consumption in the world. CFP is a global issue with an estimated tens of thousands of fish poisonings per year along with an estimated annual economic impact of $21.19 million in the United States alone. The toxins that cause CFP are produced by tropical benthic dinoflagellates belonging to the genus Gambierdiscus. Understanding the species-specific ecophysiology of these dinoflagellates is crucial to the understanding and potential forecasting of CFP outbreaks. Currently, there are knowledge gaps in understanding the role that the nutritional and photo-physiology of Gambierdiscus play in the ecology of CFP. This research focused on the nutrient uptake kinetics as well as the photoacclimation and photoprotection of two distantly related species of Gambierdiscus. The results revealed that both species utilize a unique nutritional strategy that allows them to be competitive for nutrients among the benthos of tropical oligotrophic environments. In regards to cellular and photochemical responses, the two observed species appear to cope with varying light intensities in very different ways. However, both species appear to be adapted for typical light intensities found in tropical benthic environments and exhibit both cellular and photochemical strategies for coping with exposure to irradiances above those which are desired. Together, these results reveal a new life history strategy previously unreported for single-celled algae. The unique adaptations discovered allow these dinoflagellates to be competitive in tropical benthic environments despite a nutrient-deplete water column and exposure to a wide range of light intensities.
Title: Nutritional and Photophysiological Approaches to Identifying the Niche of Gambierdiscus: Insight into the Ecology of Ciguatera Fish Poisoning.
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Name(s): Leynse, Alexander Kenneth
Type of Resource: text
Issuance: single unit
Date Issued: 2016
Physical Form: Thesis
Extent: 122 pgs.
Language(s): English
Abstract: seafood consumption in the world. CFP is a global issue with an estimated tens of thousands of fish poisonings per year along with an estimated annual economic impact of $21.19 million in the United States alone. The toxins that cause CFP are produced by tropical benthic dinoflagellates belonging to the genus Gambierdiscus. Understanding the species-specific ecophysiology of these dinoflagellates is crucial to the understanding and potential forecasting of CFP outbreaks. Currently, there are knowledge gaps in understanding the role that the nutritional and photo-physiology of Gambierdiscus play in the ecology of CFP. This research focused on the nutrient uptake kinetics as well as the photoacclimation and photoprotection of two distantly related species of Gambierdiscus. The results revealed that both species utilize a unique nutritional strategy that allows them to be competitive for nutrients among the benthos of tropical oligotrophic environments. In regards to cellular and photochemical responses, the two observed species appear to cope with varying light intensities in very different ways. However, both species appear to be adapted for typical light intensities found in tropical benthic environments and exhibit both cellular and photochemical strategies for coping with exposure to irradiances above those which are desired. Together, these results reveal a new life history strategy previously unreported for single-celled algae. The unique adaptations discovered allow these dinoflagellates to be competitive in tropical benthic environments despite a nutrient-deplete water column and exposure to a wide range of light intensities.
Identifier: Leynse_fgcu_1743_10187 (IID)
Note(s): Degree Awarded: Master of Science
Subject(s): Ciguatera
Dinoflagellate
Gambierdiscus
Nutrient
Photosynthesis
Physiology
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fgcu/fd/Leynse_fgcu_1743_10187
Use and Reproduction: All rights reserved.
Host Institution: FGCU