, Volume 19, Issue 5, pp 513-519
Date: 30 Mar 2007

Palatability and fatality of the dinoflagellate Prorocentrum lima to Artemia salina

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Prorocentrum lima is a toxic alga that produces both intra-cellular and extra-cellular toxins, including okadaic acid (OA) and dinophysistoxins (DTXs). Nauplii of the brine shrimp Artemia salina were exposed to both the cell and cell-free culture medium of P. lima in order to test the hypotheses that the extra-cellular medium is toxic to brine shrimp and that the P. lima cell is palatable but fatal to it. Artemia cysts incubated in the cell-free medium hatched, but mortalities were recorded for nauplii that hatched in, and metanuaplii exposed to, test solutions (autoclaved filtered seawater + cell-free medium) that contained at least 50% of the cell-free medium. Animals exposed to cells of P. lima readily fed on the cells. Some, especially among the Day 1 nauplii, ingested only one cell before dying, while others ingested more than one cell, up to six cells in the case of Day 3 nauplii, before dying. Day 3 nauplii were readily and heavily impacted by the P. lima cells. Survival analysis was used to evaluate survivorship of Day 1 to Day 3 nauplii exposed to cells of P. lima. Estimates were made of tD50s for the different age groups. Comparisons of the tD50s showed that the tD50s for Day 1 and Day 2 nauplii did not vary significantly, but they each varied significantly from the tD50 for the Day 3 nauplii. The possible ecological implications of the findings are discussed.