Marine Biology

, Volume 119, Issue 2, pp 307–312 | Cite as

Virus-like particles in Heterosigma akashiwo (Raphidophyceae): a possible red tide disintegration mechanism

  • K. Nagasaki
  • M. Ando
  • I. Imai
  • S. Itakura
  • Y. Ishida


Electron microscopical observations on algal samples collected in 1992 in the middle or final stages of a red tide in Hiroshima Bay, Japan, revealed virus-like particles (VLPs) in the red tide alga Heterosigma akashiwo (Class Raphidophyceae). The host cells appeared moribund and the VLPs were located in and around the nuclear area. The VLPs were icosahedral, ca. 185 nm in diameter, and generated from the periphery of several viroplasms. VLPs were also observed in three other types of H. akashiwo-like cells, which were morphologically distinguishable from each other. The appearance of VLPs in the red tide alga could explain the dramatically rapid termination of this red tide.


Japan Host Cell Final Stage Microscopical Observation Electron Microscopical Observation 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. Nagasaki
    • 1
  • M. Ando
    • 2
  • I. Imai
    • 1
  • S. Itakura
    • 1
  • Y. Ishida
    • 3
  1. 1.Nansei National Fisheries Research InstituteHiroshimaJapan
  2. 2.Department of Fisheries, Faculty of AgricultureKinki UniversityNaraJapan
  3. 3.Department of Fisheries, Faculty of AgricultureKyoto UniversityKyotoJapan

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