Discovery of microcystin-producing Anagnostidinema pseudacutissimum from cryopreserved Antarctic cyanobacterial mats

Microcystins (MCs) are secondary metabolites produced by cyanobacteria and have been well-documented in temperate and tropical regions. However, knowledge of the production of MCs in extremely cold environments is still in its infancy. Recently, examination of 100-year-old Antarctic cyanobacterial mats collected from Ross Island and the McMurdo Ice Shelf during Captain R.F. Scott's Discovery Expedition revealed that the presence of MCs in Antarctica is not a new phenomenon. Here, morphological and molecular phylogenetic analyses are used to identify a new microcystin-producing freshwater cyanobacterium, Anagnostidinema pseudacutissimum. The strain was isolated from a deep-frozen (−15 °C) sample collected from a red-brown cyanobacterial mat in a frozen pond at Cape Crozier (Ross Island, continental Antarctica) in 1984–1985. Amplification of the mcyE gene fragment involved in microcystin biosynthesis from A. pseudacutissimum confirmed that it is identical to the sequence from other known microcystin-producing cyanobacteria. Analysis of extracts from this A. pseudacutissimum strain by HPLC-MS/MS confirmed the presence of MC-LR and -YR at concentrations of 0.60 μg/L and MC-RR at concentrations of 0.20 μg/L. This is the first report of microcystin production from a species of Anagnostidinema from Antarctica.


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Authors: Zaki, Nur Syazana, Merican, Faradina, Muangmai, Narongrit, Convey, Peter ORCIDORCID record for Peter Convey, Broady, Paul

On this site: Peter Convey
1 March, 2020
Harmful Algae / 93
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