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Uptake, Growth, and Pigment Changes in Lemna minor L. Exposed to Environmental Concentrations of Cylindrospermopsin

Flores-Rojas, Nelida Cecilia; Esterhuizen-Londt, Maranda; Pflugmacher, Stephan

Inst. Ökologie

Cylindrospermopsin (CYN)-producing cyanobacterial blooms such as Raphidiopsis, Aphanizomenon, Anabaena, Umezakia, and Lyngbya spp. are occurring more commonly and frequently worldwide. CYN is an environmentally stable extracellular toxin, which inhibits protein synthesis, and, therefore, can potentially affect a wide variety of aquatic biota. Submerged and floating macrophytes, as primary producers in oligotrophic habitats, are at risk of exposure and information on the effects of CYN exposure at environmentally relevant concentrations is limited. In the present study, we investigated CYN uptake in the floating macrophyte Lemna minor with exposure to reported environmental concentrations. The effects were evaluated in terms of bioaccumulation, relative plant growth, and number of fronds per day. Variations in the concentrations and ratios of the chlorophylls as stress markers and carotenoids as markers of oxidative stress defense were measured. With exposure to 25 μg/L, L. minor could remove 43% of CYN within 24 h but CYN was not bioaccumulated. Generally, the pigment concentrations were elevated with exposure to 0.025, 0.25, and 2.5 μg/L CYN after 24 h, but normalized quickly thereafter. Changes in relative plant growth were observed with exposure to 0.25 and 2.5 μg/L CYN. Adverse effects were seen with these environmentally realistic concentrations within 24 h; however, L. minor successfully recovered within the next 48–96 h.