Harmful Algae (HARMFUL ALGAE)

Publisher: Elsevier

Journal description

This new journal will provide a forum to promote knowledge of harmful microalgae, including cyanobacteria, as well as monitoring, management and control of these organisms. Both original research and review papers will be considered. Papers dealing with the following aspects of harmful microalgae and cyanobacteria in marine and fresh waters will be considered: the distribution, life histories and taxonomy of harmful microalgae; the physiology and toxicology of harmful microalgae; harmful microalgal bloom ecology; trophic, socio-economic, public health and aquacultural impacts of harmful microalgal bloom events; occurrence, methods of detection and chemical structure of toxins in harmful microalgae, cyanobacteria, foodwebs and seafood; factors controlling toxin production, biosynthesis and chemical ecology.

Current impact factor: 3.34

Impact Factor Rankings

2015 Impact Factor Available summer 2015
2013 / 2014 Impact Factor 3.339
2012 Impact Factor 2.901
2011 Impact Factor 3.083
2010 Impact Factor 4.28
2009 Impact Factor 2.5
2008 Impact Factor 2.688
2007 Impact Factor 2.397
2006 Impact Factor 2.46
2005 Impact Factor 2.709

Impact factor over time

Impact factor

Additional details

5-year impact 3.95
Cited half-life 4.60
Immediacy index 0.99
Eigenfactor 0.01
Article influence 0.91
Website Harmful Algae website
Other titles Harmful algae (Online)
ISSN 1568-9883
OCLC 50177604
Material type Document, Periodical, Internet resource
Document type Internet Resource, Computer File, Journal / Magazine / Newspaper

Publisher details


  • Pre-print
    • Author can archive a pre-print version
  • Post-print
    • Author can archive a post-print version
  • Conditions
    • Pre-print allowed on any website or open access repository
    • Voluntary deposit by author of authors post-print allowed on authors' personal website, arXiv.org or institutions open scholarly website including Institutional Repository, without embargo, where there is not a policy or mandate
    • Deposit due to Funding Body, Institutional and Governmental policy or mandate only allowed where separate agreement between repository and the publisher exists.
    • Permitted deposit due to Funding Body, Institutional and Governmental policy or mandate, may be required to comply with embargo periods of 12 months to 48 months .
    • Set statement to accompany deposit
    • Published source must be acknowledged
    • Must link to journal home page or articles' DOI
    • Publisher's version/PDF cannot be used
    • Articles in some journals can be made Open Access on payment of additional charge
    • NIH Authors articles will be submitted to PubMed Central after 12 months
    • Publisher last contacted on 18/10/2013
  • Classification
    ​ green

Publications in this journal

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Marine benthic dinoflagellates within the genus Coolia have been reported to produce natural products, some of which are known to be toxic (i.e., cooliatoxin). To date, five species of Coolia have been reported in tropical and temperate waters around the world; however, very few studies have combined detailed morphological and molecular data with chemical analyses. In this study, a clonal culture of Coolia malayensis was isolated and mass cultivated from a coral reef on the island of Okinawa, Japan. Analysis of the thecal plate morphology and molecular phylogeny from 28S rDNA strongly supported the close relationship between this new isolate of C. malayensis from Okinawa and other isolates of C. malayensis from around the world. Following methanol extraction of 250 L of mass culture, chemical analyses using NanoLiquid chromatography mass spectrometry revealed the mass profiles of water-soluble and ethyl acetate-soluble parts. High-resolution mass spectrometry derived the molecular formulas of three novel disulphated polyether analogs of yessotoxin (C56H78O18S2 1102.4 (Compound 1), C57H80O18S2 1116.4 (Compound 2), and C57H78O19S2 1130.4 (Compound 3)); two potential homologous compounds (Compounds 4 and 5) were also observed on the high-resolution mass, albeit with low signal intensity. The five compounds in the C. malayensis from Okinawa are composed of less oxygen, compared to cooliatoxin and other analogs of yessotoxin, suggesting the metabolites produced by C. malayensis are unique to those previously reported from other strains of Coolia.
    Harmful Algae 04/2015; 44. DOI:10.1016/j.hal.2015.02.009
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    ABSTRACT: Most diatom species produce at least two classes of oxylipins, polyunsaturated aldehydes (PUAs) and non-volatile oxylipins (NVOs). These compounds can act as grazer deterrents by reducing the reproductive success of copepod grazers. The aim of the present study was to better understand the impact of late-winter diatom blooms and of diatom-derived PUAs and NVOs on the reproduction of two dominant copepod species in the northern Adriatic Sea, in two consecutive years. Higher diatom abundance in 2005 compared to 2004 coincided with higher egg-production rates in both Acartia clausi and Calanus helgolandicus. The increased contribution of diatoms to the phytoplankton assemblage in 2005 also led to a higher phytoplankton production of NVOs, whereas PUA levels were low in both years. These three-times-higher oxylipin levels correlated with a decrease in average hatching success in both A. clausi and C. helgolandicus from ∼80% in 2004 to ∼60% in 2005, indicating that the observed negative effects on copepod recruitment in the latter year were related to the greater production of diatom NVOs. Our findings reveal the importance of these metabolites and offer an explanation as to why diatom blooms may be more toxic for copepods in some years compared to others.
    Harmful Algae 04/2015; 44. DOI:10.1016/j.hal.2015.02.003
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    ABSTRACT: The toxic haptophyte Prymnesium parvum regularly forms fish-killing blooms in inland brackish water bodies in the south-central USA. Along the Texas coast smaller blooms have occurred in isolated areas. There appears to be an increasing risk that harmful P. parvum blooms will propagate into open coastal waters with implementation of future water plans. These plans will include increased interbasin water transfers from the Brazos River, regularly impacted by P. parvum blooms, to the San Jacinto-Brazos Coastal Basin, which ultimately flows into Galveston Bay (GB). Persisting source populations of P. parvum in inland waters elevates this risk. Thus, there is a need for an increased understanding of how P. parvum might perform in coastal waters, such as those found in GB. Here, two in-field experiments were conducted to investigate the influence of various plankton size-fractions of GB water on inoculated P. parvum during fall and winter, periods when blooms are typically initiating and developing inland. Stationary- and log-growth phase P. parvum were used to represent high and low toxicity initial conditions. Results revealed that P. parvum could grow in GB waters and cause acute mortality to silverside minnows (Menidia beryllina). Depending on season and growth phase, however, P. parvum growth and toxicity varied in different size fractions. During the fall, P. parvum inoculated from stationary-, but not log-growth phase culture, was negatively affected by bacteria-sized particles. During the winter, bacteria and nanoplankton together had a negative effect on P. parvum inoculated from stationary- and, to a lesser degree, log-growth phase cultures. Intermediate- and large-sized grazers when combined with bacteria and nanoplankton had complex relationships with inoculated P. parvum, sometimes stimulating and sometimes suppressing population growth. Toxicity to fish occurred in almost all plankton size fractions. The inclusion of progressively larger sized plankton fractions resulted in trends of decreased toxicity in treatments inoculated with stationary-, but not log-growth phase P. parvum in the fall. In the winter, however, inclusion of larger sized plankton fractions resulted in trends of increased toxicity to fish in treatments inoculated with both stationary- and log-growth phase P. parvum. This study indicates that understanding P. parvum population dynamics in open waters of estuaries and bays will be challenging, as there appears to be complex relationships with naturally occurring components of the plankton. The observations that P. parvum is able to grow to high population density and produce fish-killing levels of toxins underscores the need for advanced risk assessment studies, especially in light of water use plans that will result in P. parvum invasions of greater size.
    Harmful Algae 03/2015; 43. DOI:10.1016/j.hal.2014.12.008
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    ABSTRACT: Phototrophic Dinophysis species are known to acquire plastids of the cryptophyte Teleaulax amphioxeia through feeding on the ciliate Mesodinium rubrum or M. cf. rubrum. In addition, several molecular studies have detected plastid encoding genes of various algal taxa within field populations of Dinophysis species. The trophic pathway by which Dinophysis species acquire plastids from algae other than the cryptophyte genus Teleaulax, however, is unknown. In this study, we examined the fate of prey organelles and plastid genes obtained by Dinophysis caudata through ingestion of Mesodinium coatsi, a benthic ciliate that retains green plastids of Chroomonas sp. Transmission electron microscopy and molecular analysis revealed relatively rapid digestion of prey-derived plastids. Following digestion of M. coatsi, however, photodamaged D. caudata cells having olive-green rather than reddish-brown plastids were able to recover some of their original reddish-brown pigmentation. Results further suggest that plastid genes of various algal taxa detected in field populations of Dinophysis species may reflect prey diversity rather than sequestration of multiple plastid types. Ingestion and digestion of prey other than M. rubrum or M. cf. rubrum may also provide nutritional requirements needed to repair and perhaps maintain sequestered T. amphioxeia plastids.
    Harmful Algae 03/2015; 43. DOI:10.1016/j.hal.2015.02.004
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    ABSTRACT: A mixotrophic dinoflagellate Fragilidium duplocampanaeforme has been recently reported to specifically feed on mixotrophic dinoflagellates Dinophysis spp., which specifically feed on a mixotrophic ciliate Mesodinium rubrum (=Myrionecta rubra), which specifically feeds on a cryptophyte. Using established cultures, in this study we aimed (1) to examine the pattern of phased cell division of a Korean strain of F. duplocampanaeforme, (2) to explore its mixotrophic characteristics, and (3) to address food web interactions among top three protists within the trophic series (i.e., M. rubrum, Dinophysis spp. and F. duplocampanaeforme). During phototrophic growth, F. duplocampanaeforme displayed the phased cell division, with cell division starting 4 h after light was on and finished before the light off. Motile vegetative cell stage of F. duplocampanaeforme, which can ingest the prey, persisted over the dark period. When offered two Dinophysis species (Dinophysis acuminata and Dinophysis caudata) as prey, Korean F. duplocampanaeforme strain did not display any prey preference. The dinoflagellate F. duplocampanaeforme grew well phagotrophically in the dark if offered with plentiful prey (i.e., a facultative mixotroph). The dinoflagellate F. duplocampanaeforme grew well at growth rates of 0.21–0.26 d−1 when supplied with D. acuminata or D. caudata as prey in the dark, but its growth rates were 2.3–3.0 times slower than those when grown mixotrophically in the light. Nonetheless, the growth rates in the dark were similar to those in purely phototrophic growth. Our results from the mixed cultures of three protists demonstrated that the food web dynamics from cryptophyte through ciliate M. rubrum and dinoflagellate Dinophysis spp. to dinoflagellate F. duplocampanaeforme could be affected by predator–prey interaction as well as allelopathic interaction, depending on Dinophysis species included in the trophic series.
    Harmful Algae 03/2015; 43. DOI:10.1016/j.hal.2015.02.001
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    ABSTRACT: Factors regulating excystment of a toxic dinoflagellate in the genus Alexandrium were investigated in cysts from Puget Sound, Washington State, USA. Experiments were carried out in the laboratory using cysts collected from benthic seedbeds to determine if excystment is controlled by internal or environmental factors. The results suggest that the timing of germination is not tightly controlled by an endogenous clock, though there is a suggestion of a cyclical pattern. This was explored using cysts that had been stored under cold (4 °C), anoxic conditions in the dark and then incubated for 6 weeks at constant favorable environmental conditions. Excystment occurred during all months of the year, with variable excystment success ranging from 31–90%. When cysts were isolated directly from freshly collected sediments every month and incubated at the in situ bottom water temperature, a seasonal pattern in excystment was observed that was independent of temperature. This pattern may be consistent with secondary dormancy, an externally modulated pattern that prevents excystment during periods that are not favorable for sustained vegetative growth. However, observation over more annual cycles is required and the duration of the mandatory dormancy period of these cysts must be determined before the seasonality of germination can be fully characterized in Alexandrium from Puget Sound. Both temperature and light were found to be important environmental factors regulating excystment, with the highest rates of excystment observed for the warmest temperature treatment (20 °C) and in the light.
    Harmful Algae 03/2015; 43. DOI:10.1016/j.hal.2015.01.005
  • V. Giussani, F. Sbrana, V. Asnaghi, M. Vassalli, M. Faimali, S. Casabianca, A. Penna, P. Ciminiello, C. Dell’aversano, L. Tartaglione, A. Mazzeo, M. Chiantore
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    ABSTRACT: Ostreopsis cf. ovata is a harmful benthic dinoflagellate, widespread along most of the Mediterranean coasts. It produces a wide range of palytoxin-like compounds and variable amounts of mucus that may totally cover substrates, especially during the stationary phase of blooms. Studies on different aspects of the biology and ecology of Ostreopsis spp. are increasing, yet knowledge on toxicity mechanism is still limited. In particular, the potential active role of the mucilaginous matrix has not yet been shown, although when mass mortalities have occurred, organisms have been reported to be covered by the typical brownish mucilage. In order to better elucidate toxicity dependence on direct/indirect contact, the role of the mucilaginous matrix and the potential differences in toxicity along the growth curve of O. cf. ovata, we carried out a toxic bioassay during exponential, stationary and late stationary phases. Simultaneously, a molecular assay was performed to quantify intact cells or to exclude cells presence. A liquid chromatography – high resolution mass spectrometry (LC-HRMS) analysis was also carried out to evaluate toxin profile and content in the different treatments. Our results report higher mortality of model organism, especially during the late stationary phase, when direct contact between a model organism and intact microalgal cells occurs (LC50-48h <4 cells/ml on Artemia salina). Also growth medium devoid of microalgal cells but containing O. cf. ovata mucilage caused significant toxic effects. This finding is also supported by chemical analysis which shows the highest toxin content in pellet extract (95%) and around 5% of toxins in the growth medium holding mucous, while the treatment devoid of both cells and mucilage did not contain any detectable toxins. Additionally, the connection between mucilaginous matrix and thecal plates, pores and trychocysts was explored by way of atomic force microscopy (AFM) to investigate the cell surface at a sub-nanometer resolution, providing a pioneering description of cellular features.
    Harmful Algae 03/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.hal.2015.02.006
  • Harmful Algae 03/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.hal.2015.02.005
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    ABSTRACT: Most of the knowledge about cyanobacteria toxin production is traditionally associated with planktonic cyanobacterial blooms. However, some studies have been showing that benthic cyanobacteria can produce cyanotoxins. According to this, we aimed to evaluate the production of microcystins and saxitoxins in benthic cyanobacteria isolated from aquatic ecosystems in the Northeast of Brazil and to use a polyphasic approach for their identification. Forty-five clonal strains were isolated from rivers and water supply reservoirs, and identified using morphological and molecular phylogenetic characteristics. In order to evaluate the toxins production, the strains were screened for genes involved in the biosynthesis of microcystins and saxitoxins, positive results were confirmed and cyanotoxins quantified using HPLC. Eight species were identified belonging to the Phormidiaceae, Pseudanabaenaceae and Nostocaceae families. This is the first study in Brazil that shows that strains from the Geitlerinema genus correspond to at least three phylogenetic lineages, which possibly correspond to three distinct species to be subsequently reclassified. The strains that showed one of the genes involved in the cyanotoxins production were analyzed by HPLC and Geitlerinema amphibium, Geitlerinema lemmermannii, Cylindrospermum stagnale and Phormidium uncinatum were identified as producing one or more saxitoxins variants. Thus, this is the first report of saxitoxins production for those first three species and the first report in Brazil for P. uncinatum.
    Harmful Algae 03/2015; 43:46. DOI:10.1016/j.hal.2015.01.003
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    ABSTRACT: Neurotoxic shellfish poisoning (NSP) is caused by the consumption of molluscan shellfish meat contaminated with brevetoxins produced by the dinoflagellate, Karenia brevis (K. brevis). During a prolonged and intermittent K. brevis bloom starting in 2005 lasting through early 2007 in the Gulf of Mexico off southwest Florida coast, there were 24 confirmed cases of NSP linked to the consumption of clams recreationally harvested in, or in close proximity to, regulated shellfish harvesting areas; these shellfish beds had already been officially closed to harvesting due to the presence of the K. brevis bloom. The majority of NSP cases (78%) were in “visitors,” either non-Florida residents or Florida residents living outside the county of harvest. The number of confirmed NSP cases was likely an underestimate of the actual number of cases.
    Harmful Algae 03/2015; 43:13-19. DOI:10.1016/j.hal.2014.12.003
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    ABSTRACT: Severe eutrophication of freshwater ecosystem promotes frequent and long-lasting cyanobacteria blooms. In many lakes, the population dynamics of the dominant cyanobacteria species follows seasonal shifts. In Lake Dianchi, a plateau lake in China, blooms involve the alternating seasonal succession of two dominant cyanobacteria species, Aphanizomenon and Microcystis. In this study, we investigated the inhibitory effects of five Microcystis strains on a strain of Aphanizomenon flos-aquae, all isolated during blooms in Lake Dianchi. We used dialysis tubing involved batch and semi-continuous co-culture bioassays to investigate the interaction between these two genera. Our results revealed that different Microcystis inhibited the growth of A. flos-aquae to various degrees, with the strains Microcystis ichthyoblabe kutz 1313 and Microcystis aeruginosa 905 (Ma905) exhibiting the strongest inhibitory effects. The axenic Ma905 did not differ from a non-axenic strain in the inhibitory effect, demonstrating that the growth inhibitory effects we observed were due to Microcystis rather than bacteria. Filtrate of most Microcystis monoculture in different growth phases had a negligible effect on A. flos-aquae. However, the filtrate of Microcystis viridis 1337 (Mv1337) and Ma905 co-cultured with A. flos-aquae from day 21 and day 28, respectively, exhibited stronger inhibitory effects than did their corresponding monoculture filtrates, suggesting that the allelopathic effect of some Microcystis strains is inducible. Results of experiments using solid phase extraction (SPE) fractions of Microcystis monoculture were similar to those from the dialysis tubing bioassays. The microcystin content of the SPE fractions of Ma905 and Mv1337 from day 28 contained 380 μg L−1 and 290 μg L−1 microcystin-LR (MC-LR), respectively. However, a further bioassay with pure MC-LR with concentrations of 250 μg L−1 and 500 μg L−1 did not inhibit A. flos-aquae, and further excluded MC-LR as a candidate allelochemical. In summary, our research demonstrates that some Microcystis strains are able to suppress the growth of A. flos-aquae. This finding indicates that allelopathic effects likely play a role in driving the alternating seasonal succession of these dominant cyanobacteria blooms in Lake Dianchi.
    Harmful Algae 02/2015; 42. DOI:10.1016/j.hal.2014.12.009