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Overview

Brief Summary

Alexandrium is one of those dinoflagellates you don't want to run into. This harmful alga poisons shellfish and fish that consume the plankton and can kill or paralyze animals as well as people that eat the (shell)fish. When it blossoms in large amounts, the seawater turns red or brown, causing a so-called red tide. However, not all red tides are necessarily Alexandrium or even harmful algae.
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Comprehensive Description

Cells are variable in size. The epitheca often has two shoulders, again varying in size. The hyptheca is trapezoidal in shape with sometimes irregular sides. The girdle is excavated. Sulcus morphology is variable, but a sulcal list is normally present. Po is wide and angular. 1? is very variable in width.
  • Tomas C ed. (1996) Identifying marine diatoms and dinoflagellates. pp 598. Academic Press Ltd. London
  • Dodge, JD. (1982) Marine dinoflagellates of the British Isles. Her Majesty's Stationary office. pp 303.
  • John, U., Fensome RA.,Medlin, LK. (2003) The Application of a Molecular Clock Based on Molecular Sequences and the
  • Fossil Record to Explain Biogeographic Distributions Within the Alexandrium tamarense ??Species Complex?? (Dinophyceae). Mol. Biol. Evol. 20(7):1015?1027
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© University of Liverpool

Source: Harmful Phytoplankton Project

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Distribution

In the UK A. tamarense is found particularly around southern and Eastern coasts.
  • Tomas C ed. (1996) Identifying marine diatoms and dinoflagellates. pp 598. Academic Press Ltd. London
  • Dodge, JD. (1982) Marine dinoflagellates of the British Isles. Her Majesty's Stationary office. pp 303.
  • John, U., Fensome RA.,Medlin, LK. (2003) The Application of a Molecular Clock Based on Molecular Sequences and the
  • Fossil Record to Explain Biogeographic Distributions Within the Alexandrium tamarense ??Species Complex?? (Dinophyceae). Mol. Biol. Evol. 20(7):1015?1027
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© University of Liverpool

Source: Harmful Phytoplankton Project

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Ecology

Habitat

Depth range based on 241 specimens in 1 taxon.
Water temperature and chemistry ranges based on 88 samples.

Environmental ranges
  Depth range (m): 0 - 175
  Temperature range (°C): -1.770 - 27.590
  Nitrate (umol/L): 0.275 - 4.405
  Salinity (PPS): 26.680 - 38.971
  Oxygen (ml/l): 4.600 - 8.712
  Phosphate (umol/l): 0.071 - 1.153
  Silicate (umol/l): 0.927 - 14.986

Graphical representation

Depth range (m): 0 - 175

Temperature range (°C): -1.770 - 27.590

Nitrate (umol/L): 0.275 - 4.405

Salinity (PPS): 26.680 - 38.971

Oxygen (ml/l): 4.600 - 8.712

Phosphate (umol/l): 0.071 - 1.153

Silicate (umol/l): 0.927 - 14.986
 
Note: this information has not been validated. Check this *note*. Your feedback is most welcome.

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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Alexandrium tamarense

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


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Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Alexandrium tamarense

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 1
Specimens with Barcodes: 5
Species With Barcodes: 1
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© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

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Conservation

Management

Toxicity

According to Balech, 1995 typical A. tamarense cells are not toxin producers. However, others have suggested that at least some strains can produce PSP neurotoxins, GTX I, II, III, IV and V, neosaxitoxin and/or saxitoxin (Shimizu et al., 1975, Oshima et al., 1977, Larsen and Moestrup 1989)
  • Tomas C ed. (1996) Identifying marine diatoms and dinoflagellates. pp 598. Academic Press Ltd. London
  • Dodge, JD. (1982) Marine dinoflagellates of the British Isles. Her Majesty's Stationary office. pp 303.
  • John, U., Fensome RA.,Medlin, LK. (2003) The Application of a Molecular Clock Based on Molecular Sequences and the
  • Fossil Record to Explain Biogeographic Distributions Within the Alexandrium tamarense ??Species Complex?? (Dinophyceae). Mol. Biol. Evol. 20(7):1015?1027
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© University of Liverpool

Source: Harmful Phytoplankton Project

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Wikipedia

Alexandrium tamarense

Alexandrium tamarense is a dinoflagellate known to produce saxitoxin, a neurotoxin which causes the human illness clinically known as paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP). Multiple species of phytoplankton are known to produce saxitoxin, including at least 10 other species from the genus Alexandrium.

Recent molecular work shows that this species belongs to the Alexandrium tamarense complex (Atama complex, including A. tamarense, Alexandrium fundyense, Alexandrium catenella) and that none of the three original morphospecies designations forms monophyletic groups in the present SSU-based and previous LSU-based[1] phylogenetic trees, i.e. these species designations are invalid.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Lilly, E. L.; Halanych, K. M.; Anderson, D. M. (2007). "Species boundaries and global biogeography of theAlexandrium tamarensecomplex (Dinophyceae)1". Journal of Phycology 43 (6): 1329. doi:10.1111/j.1529-8817.2007.00420.x.  edit
  2. ^ Miranda, L. N.; Zhuang, Y.; Zhang, H.; Lin, S. (2012). "Phylogenetic analysis guided by intragenomic SSU rDNA polymorphism refines classification of "Alexandrium tamarense" species complex". Harmful Algae 16: 35. doi:10.1016/j.hal.2012.01.002.  edit
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