WHO ARE THE BAD GUYS? IDENTIFYING CYANOBACTERIAL HARMFUL ALGAL BLOOMS USING AN INTEGRATIVE MOLECULAR AND CHEMICAL APPROACH
Marine cyanobacteria are notorious for their prolific biosynthetic abilities to produce bioactive secondary metabolites. These molecules can be beneficial as natural products with biomedical potential, but also hazardous to humans as well as for the natural environment, having the ability to form harmful algal blooms (cyanoHABs). In an effort to identify the bloom-forming species and predict their production of ecotoxins and other ecologically relevant metabolites, an integrative molecular and chemical approach has been applied. The evolutionary relationships of chemically rich marine cyanobacteria have been investigated, revealing a high degree of novel biodiversity previously overlooked by traditional morphology-based taxonomy. This unrecognized biodiversity is primarily due to a lack of proper classification systems. I will discuss the research efforts in describing novel taxa and providing taxonomic systems that are able to identify the cyanoHABs, and predict their production of bioactive secondary metabolites. Furthermore, the development of genetic and chemical tools for robust, reliable, and high-throughput identification of cyanoHABs will also be discussed. Ultimately, these taxonomic systems and identification methods may be used for monitoring, predicting, and/or controlling potentially harmful cyanobacterial blooms.
Engene, N., Florida International University, USA, email@example.com
Location: 323 B
Presentation is given by student: No