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Open AccessArticle

Morphology and Phylogenetics of Benthic Prorocentrum Species (Dinophyceae) from Tropical Northwestern Australia

Climate Change Cluster, University of Technology Sydney, Ultimo, NSW 2007, Australia
Laboratorio de Sistemática Molecular, Centro de Biodiversidad Marina, Universidad Simón Bolívar, Caracas 89000, Venezuela
Sydney Institute of Marine Sciences, Mosman, NSW 2088, Australia
Seafood Safety Research Programme, Cawthron Institute, Nelson 7010, New Zealand
Institut für Biologie und Umweltwissenschaften, Carl von Ossietzky Universität Oldenburg, D-26129 Oldenburg; Germany
Senckenberg am Meer, German Centre for Marine Biodiversity Research (DZMB), D-26382 Wilhelmshaven, Germany
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Toxins 2019, 11(10), 571;
Received: 9 August 2019 / Revised: 17 September 2019 / Accepted: 27 September 2019 / Published: 30 September 2019
Approximately 70 species of Prorocentrum are known, of which around 30 species are associated with benthic habitats. Some produce okadaic acid (OA), dinophysistoxin (DTX) and their derivatives, which are involved in diarrhetic shellfish poisoning. In this study, we isolated and characterized Prorocentrum concavum and P. malayense from Broome in north Western Australia using light and scanning electron microscopy as well as molecular sequences of large subunit regions of ribosomal DNA, marking the first record of these species from Australian waters. The morphology of the motile cells of P. malayense was similar to P. concavum in the light microscopy, but differed by the smooth thecal surface, the pore pattern and the production of mucous stalk-like structures and a hyaline sheath around the non-motile cells. P. malayense could also be differentiated from other closely related species, P. leve and P. foraminosum, despite the similarity in thecal surface and pore pattern, by its platelet formula and morphologies. We tested the production of OA and DTXs from both species, but found that they did not produce detectable levels of these toxins in the given culturing conditions. This study aids in establishing more effective monitoring of potential harmful algal taxa in Australian waters for aquaculture and recreational purposes. View Full-Text
Keywords: benthic dinoflagellates; phylogeny; Prorocentrum; taxonomy benthic dinoflagellates; phylogeny; Prorocentrum; taxonomy
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Verma, A.; Kazandjian, A.; Sarowar, C.; Harwood, D.T.; Murray, J.S.; Pargmann, I.; Hoppenrath, M.; Murray, S.A. Morphology and Phylogenetics of Benthic Prorocentrum Species (Dinophyceae) from Tropical Northwestern Australia. Toxins 2019, 11, 571.

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