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Growth Characteristics of an Estuarine Heterocystous Cyanobacterium
Guimarães, P.; Yunes, J.S.; Cretoiu, M.S.; Stal, L.J. (2017). Growth Characteristics of an Estuarine Heterocystous Cyanobacterium. Front. Microbiol. 8: 1132.
In: Frontiers in Microbiology. Frontiers Media: Lausanne. ISSN 1664-302X; e-ISSN 1664-302X, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Author keywords
    akinete; benthic cyanobacterium; Cylindrospermopsis raciborskii;estuarine cyanobacterium; heterocyst; nitrogen fixation; salt tolerance

Authors  Top 
  • Guimarães, P.
  • Yunes, J.S.
  • Cretoiu, M.S., more
  • Stal, L.J., more

    A new estuarine filamentous heterocystous cyanobacterium was isolated from intertidal sediment of the Lagoa dos Patos estuary (Brazil). The isolate may represent a new genus related to Cylindrospermopsis. While the latter is planktonic, contains gas vesicles, and is toxic, the newly isolated strain is benthic and does not contain gas vesicles. It is not known whether the new strain is toxic. It grows equally well in freshwater, brackish and full salinity growth media, in the absence of inorganic or organic combined nitrogen, with a growth rate 0.6 d-1. Nitrogenase, the enzyme complex responsible for fixing dinitrogen, was most active during the initial growth phase and its activity was not different between the different salinities tested (freshwater, brackish, and full salinity seawater). Salinity shock also did not affect nitrogenase activity. The frequency of heterocysts was high, coinciding with high nitrogenase activity during the initial growth phase, but decreased subsequently. However, the frequency of heterocysts decreased considerably more at higher salinity, while no change in nitrogenase activity occurred, indicating a higher efficiency of dinitrogen fixation. Akinete frequency was low in the initial growth phase and higher in the late growth phase. Akinete frequency was much lower at high salinity, which might indicate better growth conditions or that akinete differentiation was under the same control as heterocyst differentiation. These trends have hitherto not been reported for heterocystous cyanobacteria but they seem to be well fitted for an estuarine life style.

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