Effects of the DSP-toxic dinoflagellate Dinophysis acuta on clearance and respiration rate of the blue mussel, Mytilus edulis

Pernille Nielsen*, Bernd Krock, Per Juel Hansen, Bent Vismann

*Corresponding author for this work

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Diarrheic Shellfish Poisoning toxins (DST) are a severe health risk to shellfish consumers and can be a major problem for the shellfish industry. Bivalve molluscs can accumulate DST via ingestion of toxic dinoflagellates like Dinophysis spp., which are the most prominent producers of DST. The effects of DST-containing dinoflagellate Dinophysis acuta on bivalve clearance and respiration rate were investigated in the blue mussel (Mytilus edulis) exposed to different algal densities in a controlled laboratory study. Results showed that M. edulis exposed to D. acuta displayed a reduced clearance rate compared to M. edulis exposed to equivalent bio-volumes of the non-toxic cryptophyte Rhodomonas salina. Furthermore, M. edulis ceased to feed on D. acuta after 1 to 4 h, depending on D. acuta densities. The quickest response was observed at the highest densities of D. acuta. The estimated total amount of DST accumulated in the M. edulis exceeded the regulatory limit for human consumption and furthermore, intoxication of the M. edulis seemed to occur faster at high cell toxicity rather than at high cell density. However, respiration rates were, similar, irrespective of whether M. edulis were fed single diets of R. salina, D. acuta or a mixed diet of both algal species. In conclusion, the DST-containing D. acuta had a severe negative effect on the clearance of M. edulis, which can affect the conditions of the M. edulis negatively. Hence, DST may cause low quality M. edulis, due to reduced feeding when exposed to DST-containing D. acuta.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0230176
JournalP L o S One
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2020


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