Journal of Applied Phycology

, Volume 2, Issue 2, pp 173–178 | Cite as

Microcystin composition of an axenic clonal strain of Microcystis viridis and Microcystis viridis-containing waterblooms in Japanese freshwaters

  • Kunimitsu Kaya
  • Makoto M. Watanabe


Toxic cyclis heptapeptides (microcystin) in cells of an axenic clonal strain of Microcystis viridis were analyzed quantitatively. Cells from the logarithmic, stationary and death phases of batch culture contained 670, 618 and 372 μg toxic cyclic heptapeptides per g dry cells, respectively. The toxic peptides of the cells from the stationary phase consisted of microcystin RR (65%), microcystin LR (22%), microcystin YR (10%) and microcystin LA (3%). The composition of the toxic peptides changed only slightly through the phases of batch culture.

Toxicities and the toxic peptide contents of Microcystis viridis-containing waterblooms in Japanese freshwaters were examined. All samples tested had toxic effects on mice after intraperitoneal injection. The toxic peptides in the samples were composed mainly of microcystin RR (50%) and microcystin LR (30%).

Key words

axenic Microcystis viridis microcystin toxic waterbloom Japanese lakes 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Carmichael WW, Jones CLA, Mahmood NA, Theiss WC (1985) Algatoxins and water-based diseases. CRC Crit. Rev. Environ. Control 15: 275–313.Google Scholar
  2. Carmichael WW (1988) Freshwater cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) toxins. In: Ownby CL, Odell GV (eds), Natural Toxins, Pergamon Press, Oxford, 3–16.Google Scholar
  3. Falconer IR, Beresford A, Runnegar MTC (1983) Evidence of liver damage by toxin from a bloom of the blue-green alga, Microcystis aeruginosa. Med. J. Aust. 1: 511–516.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Galey FD, Beasley VR, Carmichael WW, Kleppe G, Hooser SB, Haschek WM (1987) Blue-green algae (Microcystis aeruginosa) hepatotoxicosis in dairy cows. Am. J. Vet. Res. 48: 1415–1419.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Gathercole PS, Thiel PG (1987) Liquid chromatographic determination of the cyanoginosin toxins produced by the cyanobacterium Microcystis aeruginosa. J. Chromatography 408: 435–440.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Komárek J (1958) Die taxonomische Revision der planktischen Blaualge der Tschechoslowakei. In: Komárek J, Ettl H (eds) Algologische Studien. Tschecholslowakischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, Prague, 10–206.Google Scholar
  7. Kusumi T, Ooi T, Watanabe MM, Takahashi H, Kakisawa H (1987) Cyanoviridin RR, a toxin from the cyanobacterium (blue-green alga) Microcystis viridis. Tetrahedron Lett. 28: 4695–4698.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Ooi T, Kusumi T, Kakisawa H, Watanabe MM (1989) Structure of cyanoviridin RR, a toxin form the blue-green alga, Microcystis viridis. J. appl. Phycol. 1: 31–38.Google Scholar
  9. Takamura N, Watanabe MM (1987) Seasonal changes in the biomass of four species of Microcystis in Lake Kasumigaura. Jap. J. Limnol. 48: 139–144.Google Scholar
  10. Van der Westhuizen AJ, Eloff JN, Kruger GHJ (1986) Effects of temperature and light (fluence rate) on the composition of the toxin of the cyanobacterium Microcystis aeruginosa (UV-006). Arch. Hydrobiol. 108: 145–154.Google Scholar
  11. Watanabe MF, Harada K-I, Matsuura K, Watanabe M, Suzuki M (1989) Heptapeptide toxin production during the batch culture of two Microcystis species (Cyanobacteria). J. appl. Phycol. 1: 161–165.Google Scholar
  12. Watanabe MM, Suda S, Kasai F, Sawaguchi T (1985) Axenic culture of the three species of Microcystis (Cyanophyta = Cyanobacteria). Bull. Jap. Federation for Culture Collections 1: 57–63.Google Scholar
  13. Watanabe MM, Kasai F (1988) NIES-Collection List of Strains. Second Edition 1988 Microalgae and Protozoa. Microbial Culture Collection, National Institute for Environmental Studies, Tsukuba, 148 pp.Google Scholar
  14. World Health Organization (1984) Aquatic (marine and freshwater) biotoxins. Environmental Health Criteria 37. Geneva: WHO.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kunimitsu Kaya
    • 1
  • Makoto M. Watanabe
    • 1
  1. 1.National Institute for Environmental StudiesTsukuba, IbarakiJapan

Personalised recommendations