Allelopathy of the raphidophyte Heterosigma akashiwo against the dinoflagellate Akashiwo sanguinea is mediated via allelochemicals and cell contact

Xuchun Qiu, Yasuhiro Yamasaki, Yohei Shimasaki, Hiroaki Gunjikake, Masato Honda, Mayumi Kawaguchi, Tadashi Matsubara, Sou Nagasoe, Takuya Etoh, Shigeaki Matsui, Tsuneo Honjo, Yuji Oshima

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11 Citations (Scopus)


Growth interactions between the raphidophyte Heterosigma akashiwo and the dinoflagellate Akashiwo sanguinea were examined by using bi-algal culture experiments under axenic conditions. There was a lethal effect of H. akashiwo (initial cell density: 1 × 10 2 or 1 × 10 4 cells ml -1) on A. sanguinea at an initial cell density of 1 × 10 2 cells ml -1. Growth of both species was suppressed concurrently when initial cell densities of H. akashiwo and A. sanguinea were 1 × 10 2 and 2 × 10 3 cells ml -1, respectively. A mathematical model was used to simulate growth and interactions in bi-algal cultures. The model predicted that H. akashiwo would outcompete A. sanguinea over time. A cell-free enriched filtrate prepared from dense culture of H. akashiwo reduced both maximum growth rate and maximum yield of A. sanguinea. A filtrate of A. sanguinea prepared in the same manner only reduced maximum yield of H. akashiwo but did not affect its maximum growth rate. Growth of A. sanguinea in bi-algal cultures under contact conditions was significantly lower than that in mono-algal culture and in bi-algal cultures under noncontact conditions. Morphologically abnormal A. sanguinea cells occurred at high frequency only when A. sanguinea was cultured together with H. akashiwo under direct cell contact condition. Moreover, growth inhibition and formation of morphologically abnormal cells of A. sanguinea were induced in a concentration-dependent manner by allelochemicals (including allelochemical polysaccharide-protein complexes) produced by H. akashiwo. These results suggest that growth inhibition effects, via allelochemicals and direct cell contact by Heterosigma akashiwo, influence bloom formation of Akashiwo sanguinea in the field.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-118
Number of pages12
JournalMarine Ecology Progress Series
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2 2012


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology

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