Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 25, Issue 27, pp 26861–26873 | Cite as

Cyanobacteria and microcystins in Koka reservoir (Ethiopia)

  • Yeshiemebet Major
  • Demeke Kifle
  • Lisa Spoof
  • Jussi Meriluoto
Research Article


The composition and abundance of cyanobacteria and their toxins, microcystins (MCs), and cylindrospermopsins (CYN) were investigated using samples collected at monthly intervals from the Amudde side of Koka Reservoir from May 2013 to April 2014. Cyanobacteria were the most abundant and persistent phytoplankton taxa with Microcystis and Cylindrospermopsis species alternately dominating the phytoplankton community of the reservoir and accounting for up to 84.3 and 11.9% of total cyanobacterial abundance, respectively. Analyses of cyanotoxins in filtered samples by HPLC-DAD and LC-MS/MS identified and quantified five variants of MCs (MC-LR, MC-YR, MC-RR, MC-dmLR, and MC-LA) in all samples, with their total concentrations ranging from 1.86 to 28.3 μg L−1 and from 1.71 to 33 μg L−1, respectively. Despite the presence and occasional abundance of Cylindrospermopsis sp., cylindrospermopsin was not detected. Redundancy analysis (RDA) showed that the environmental variables explained 82.7% of the total variance in cyanobacterial abundance and microcystin concentration. The presence of considerably high levels of MCs almost throughout the year represents a serious threat to public health and life of domestic and wild animals.


Cyanobacteria Cyanotoxins Cylindrospermopsin Environmental factors Koka reservoir Microcystins 



The study reported here was financially supported by Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia, through a research fund it granted to a thematic water resources research project.

Supplementary material

11356_2018_2727_MOESM1_ESM.doc (49 kb)
Supplementary Table 1 (DOC 49 kb)


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© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Applied Biology Program, School of Applied Natural ScienceAdama Science and Technology UniversityAdamaEthiopia
  2. 2.Aquatic Science, Fisheries and Aquaculture stream, Department of Zoological SciencesAddis Ababa UniversityAddis AbabaEthiopia
  3. 3.Biochemistry, Faculty of Science and EngineeringÅbo Akademi UniversityTurkuFinland

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