Suriyanti Su Nyun Pau, Dzulhelmi Muhammad Nasir, Gires Usup


Amnesic Shellfish Poisoning (ASP) is a type of intoxication caused by the neurotoxin domoic acid (DA). The diatom genus Nitzschia is capable of producing this toxin. Screening for the presence of toxic Nitzschia spp. was carried out at various estuaries in Malaysia. Nitzschia-like cells were isolated and established into clonal cultures. Late stationary phase of cultures were harvested and tested for toxin production using HPLC. Toxin production and compound was verified by LC-MS. From the analyses, at least three cultures were detected with DA, while the rest of the cultures did not show detectable amounts of DA. The localities of the toxic species are Johor and Sabah. Here we conclude that toxic Nitzschia species are present in Malaysian water.

Keywords: diatom, estuary, intoxication, safety, toxic 

Full Text:



Anonymous, Amnesic Shellfish Poisoning (ASP) Toxins: Determination of Marine Biotoxins (Manual). Friedrich-Schiller-University, undated). (pp. 42-48).

Bajarias, F. F. A., Kotaki, Y., Relox, J. R., Romero, M. L. J., Furio, E. F., Lundholm, N., Koike, K., Fukuyo, Y., & Kodama, M. (2006). Screening of diatoms producing domoic acid and its derivatives in the Philippines. Coastal Marine Science, 30(1), 121-129.

Bates, S. S., Bird, C. J., de Freitas, A. S. W., Foxall, R., Gilgan, M., Hanic, L. A., Johnson, G. R., McCulloch, A. W., Odense, P., Pocklington, R., Quilliam, M. A., Sim, P. G., Smith, J. C., Rao, D. V. S., Todd, E. C. D., Walter, J. A., & Wright, J. L. C. (1989). Pennate diatom Nitzschia pungens as the primary source of domoic acid, a toxin in shellfish from eastern Prince Edward Island, Canada. Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences, 46, 1203-1215.

Bates, S. S., Douglas, D. J., Doucette, G. J., & Leger, C. (1995). Enhancement of domoic acid production by reintroducing bacteria to axenic cultures of the diatom Pseudo-nitzschia multiseries. Natural Toxins, 3(6), 428-435.

Douglas, D. J., & Bates, S. S. (1992). Production of domoic acid, a neurotoxic amino acid, by an axenic culture of the marine diatom Nitzschia pungens f. multiseries Hasle,” Canadian Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Sciences. 49(1), 85-90.

Fritz, L., Quilliam, M. A., Wright, J. L. C., Beale, A., & Work, T. M. (1992). An outbreak of domoic acid poisoning attributed to the pennate diatom Pseudonitzschia australis. Journal of Phycology, 28, 439-442.

Guiry, M. D., Guiry, G. M. (2014). AlgaeBase. World-wide electronic publication, National University of Ireland, Galway.; searched on 27 May 2014.

Iwasaki, H. (1961). The life-cycle of Porphyra tenera in vitro. Biological Bulletin, 121, 173-187.

Kotaki, Y., Furio, E. F., Satake, M., Lundholm, N., Katayama, T. , Koike, K., Fulgueras, V. P., Bajarias, F. A., Takata, Y., Kobayashi, K., Sato, S., Fukuyo, Y., & Kodama, M. (2005). Production of Isodomic Acids A and B as major toxin components of a pennate diatom Nitzschia navis-varingica,” Toxicon, 46, 946-953.

Kotaki, Y., Koike, K., Yoshida, M., Thuoc, C. V., Huyen, N. T. M., Hoi, N. C., Fukuyo, Y., & Kodama, M. (2000). Domoic acid production in Nitzschia Sp. (Bacillariophyceae) isolated from a shrimp-culture pond in Do Son, Vietnam. Journal of Phycology, 36, 1057-1060.

Kotaki, Y., Lundholm, N., Onodera, H., Kobayashi, K., Bajarias, f. F. A., Furio, E. F., Iwataki, M., Fukuyo, Y., & Kodama, M. (2004). Wide distribution of Nitzschia navis-varingica, a new domoic acid-producing benthic diatom found in Vietnam. Fisheries Science, 70, 28-32.

Lundholm, N., & Moestrup, O. (2000). Morphology of the marine diatom Nitzschia navis-varingica sp. nov. (Bacillariophyceae), another producer of the neurotoxin domoic acid. Journal of Phycology, 36, 1162-1174.

Perl, T. M., Bedard, L., Kosatsky, T., Hockin, J. C., Todd, E. C. D., & Remia, R. S. (1990). An outbreak of toxic encephalopathy caused by eating mussels contaminated with domoic acid. The New England Journal of Medicine, 322(25), 1775-1780.

Romero, M. L. J., Kotaki, Y., Lundholm, N., Thoha, H., Ogawa, H., Relox, J. R., Terada, R., Takeda, S., Takata, Y., Haraguchi, K., Endo, T., Lim, P. T., Kodama, M., & Fukuyo, Y. (2011). Unique amnesic shellfish toxin composition found in the South East Asian diatom Nitzschia navis-varingica. Harmful Algae, 10, 456-462.

Romero, M. L. J., Lirdwitayaprasit, T., Kotaki, Y., Lundholm, N., Relox, J. R., Furio, E. F., Terada, R., Yokoyama, T., Kodama, M., & Fukuyo, Y. (2008). Isolation of ASP toxin-producing Nitzschia from Thailand. Marine Research Indonesia, 33(2), 225-228.

Roy, R. N. (1977). Red tide and outbreak of paralytic shellfish poisoning in Sabah,” Medical Journal of Malaysia, 31(3), 247-251.

Scholin, C. A., Gulland, F., Doucette, G. J., Benson, S., Busman, M., Chavez, F. P., Cordaro, J., DeLong, R., De Vogelaere, A., Harvey, J., Haulena, M., Lefebvre, K., Lipscomb, T., Loscutoff, S., Lowenstine, L.J., Marin III, R., Miller, P. E., McLellan, W. A., Moeller, P. D. R., Powell, C. L., Rowles, T., Silvagni, P., Silver, M., Spraker, T., Trainer, V., & Van Dolah, F. M. (2000). Mortality of sea lions along the central California coast linked to a toxic diatom bloom. Nature, 403, 80-83.

Smida, D. B., Lundholm, N., Kooistra, W. H. C. F., Sahraoui, I., Ruggiero, M. V., Kotaki, Y., Ellegaard, M., Lambert, C., Mabrouk, H. H., & Hlaili, A. S. (2014). Morphology and molecular phylogeny of Nitzschia bizertensis sp. nov. - a new domoic acid-producer. Harmful Algae, 32, 49-63.

Thoha, H., Kotaki, Y., Panngabean, L., Lundholm, N., Ogawa, H., Lim, P. T., Takata, Y., Kodama, M., & Fukuyo, Y. (2012). Screening of diatoms that produce ASP toxins in Southernmost Asian Waters. Coastal Marine Science, 35(1), 34-38.

Ting, T. M., & Wong, J. T. S. (1989). Summary of red tides and paralytic shellfish poisonings in Sabah, Malaysia: Biology, epidemiology and management of Pyrodinium red tides, edited by Hallegraph, G. M., & Maclean, J. L. (ICLARM, Manila) (pp. 19-26).

Trainer, V. L., Bates, S. S., Lundholm, N., Thessen, A. E., Cochlan, W. P., Adams, N. G., & Trick, C. G. (2012). Pseudo-nitzschia physiological ecology, phylogeny, toxicity, monitoring and impacts on ecosystem health. Harmful Algae, 14, 271-300.

Usup, G., Ahmad, A., Ismail, N. Pyrodinium bahamense var. compressum red tide studies in Sabah, Malaysia: Biology, epidemiology and management of Pyrodinium red tides,” edited by Hallegraph, G.M., & Maclean, J.L. (ICLARM, Manila, 1989) pp. 97-110.

Usup, G., Leaw, C. P., Lim, P. T., Ahmad, A. (2002). Probable toxin producer responsible for the first occurrence of paralytic shellfish poisoning on the east coast of peninsula Malaysia. Malaysian Applied Biology, 31(2), 29-35.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

ISSN: 1907-9931 (Printed), 2476-9991 (Online)