Publications: Peer-reviewed journal articles (by staff)

First report of the cyanotoxin anatoxin-A from Aphanizomenon issatschenkoi (cyanobacteria)

  • Wood SA,
  • Rasmussen JP ,
  • and others
1 January, 2007

Wood SA, Rasmussen JP et al 2007. First report of the cyanotoxin anatoxin-A from Aphanizomenon issatschenkoi (cyanobacteria). Journal of Phycology 43(2): 356-365.


The taxonomy and toxicity of a single-filament isolate from a filamentous cyanobacterial bloom in Lake Hakanoa (New Zealand) were examined by microscopy and liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. Based on a morphological examination of environmental and cultured material, strain CAWBG02 was identified as Raphidiopsis mediterranea Skuja; however, subsequent phylogenetic analysis of the 16S rRNA gene sequence demonstrated that CAWBG02 was most likely to be a single culture of Aphanizomenon issatschenkoi (Usacev) Proshkina-Lavrenko. Toxin testing confirmed that the original bloom and A. issatschenkoi isolate produced anatoxin-a but did not produce homoanatoxin-a or any cylindrospermopsins, saxitoxins, or microcystins. Despite the absence of cylindrospermopsin production, genes implicated in the biosynthesis of cylindrospermopsin were successfully amplified from A. issatschenkoi strain CAWBG02. To our knowledge, this is the first confirmation of an anatoxin-a-producing species in the Southern Hemisphere and the first report of anatoxin-a production by A. issatschenkoi.