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Effects of macroalgae Ulva pertusa (Chlorophyta) and Gracilaria lemaneiformis (Rhodophyta) on growth of four species of bloom-forming dinoflagellates

Effects of macroalgae Ulva pertusa (Chlorophyta) and Gracilaria lemaneiformis (Rhodophyta) on growth of four species of bloom-forming dinoflagellates

Aquatic Botany 86(2): 139-147

ISSN/ISBN: 0304-3770

DOI: 10.1016/j.aquabot.2006.09.013

The effects of fresh thalli and culture medium filtrates from two species of marine macroalgae, Ulva pertusa Kjellm (Chlorophyta) and Gracilaria lemaneiformis (Bory) Dawson (Rhodophyta), on growth of marine microalgae were investigated in co-culture under controlled laboratory conditions. A selection of microalgal species were used, all, being identified as bloom-forming dinoflagellates: Prorocentrum donghaiense Lu sp., Alexandrium tamarense (Lebour) Balech, Amphidinium carterae Hulburt and Scrippsiella trochoide (Stein) Loeblich III. Results showed that the fresh thalli of either U. pertusa or G. lemaneiformis significantly inhibited the microalgal growth, or caused mortality at the end of the experiment. However, the overall effects of the macroalgal culture filtrates on the growth of the dinoflagellates were species-specific (inhibitory, stimulatory or none) for different microalgal species. Results indicated an allelopathic effect of macroalga on the co-cultured dinoflagellate. We then took P. donghaiense as an example to further assess this hypothesis. The present study was carried out under controlled conditions, thereby excluded the fluctuation in light and temperature. Nutrient assays showed that nitrate and phosphate were almost exhausted in G. lemaneiformis co-culture. but remained at enough high levels in U pertusa co-culture, which were well above the nutrient limitation for the microalgal growth, when all cells of P. donghaiense were killed in the co-culture. Daily f/2 medium enrichment greatly alleviated the growth inhibition on P. donghaiense in G. lemaneiformis co-culture, but could not eliminate it. Other environmental factors, such as carbonate limitation, bacterial presence and the change of pH were also not necessary for the results. We thus concluded that allelopathy was the most possible reason leading to the negative effect of U. pertusa on P. donghaiense, and the combined roles of allelopathy and nutrient competition were essential for the effect of G. lemaneiformis on P. donghaiense.

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