Marine Biology

, Volume 148, Issue 1, pp 123–130 | Cite as

Fate of domoic acid ingested by the copepod Acartia clausi

  • Isabel ManeiroEmail author
  • Paula Iglesias
  • Cástor Guisande
  • Isabel Riveiro
  • Aldo Barreiro
  • Soultana Zervoudaki
  • Edna Granéli
Research Article


Two important issues in the studies of harmful algae include ecological role of the toxic compounds and their fate through the food web. The aims of this study were to determine whether the production of domoic acid is a strategy evolved to avoid predation and the role of copepods in the fate of this toxic compound through the food web. The copepod Acartia clausi was fed with single and mixed cultures of the toxic diatom Pseudo-nitzschia multiseries and the non-toxic diatom Pseudo-nitzschiadelicatissima. Ingestion rate as a function of diatom abundance was the same for the toxic and non-toxic Pseudo-nitzschia species, indicating no selective feeding behaviour against P. multiseries. The toxins ingested by the copepods did not affect mortality, feeding behaviour, egg production and egg hatching of the copepods. Copepods assimilated the 4.8% of the total domoic acid ingested. Although the amount of toxins daily detoxificated by the copepods was 63.6%, the copepods accumulated domoic acid in their tissues. We conclude that domoic acid is not toxic for copepods and, probably for this reason, this toxin does not act as feeding deterrent for copepods. However, even though the production of domoic acid has apparently not evolved to deter predation, copepods may play an important role on the fate of this toxic compound through the marine food web.


Phytoplankton Domoic Acid Toxin Concentration Toxin Content Toxin Accumulation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We are very grateful to the crew of R/V ‘J.M. Navaz’ (I.E.O.) for technical support and helpful assistance and to Jefferson Turner for English editing and constructive review. This research was supported by the project EVK3-CT2000-00055 and a FPU grant to A. Barreiro.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Isabel Maneiro
    • 1
    Email author
  • Paula Iglesias
    • 1
  • Cástor Guisande
    • 1
  • Isabel Riveiro
    • 1
  • Aldo Barreiro
    • 1
  • Soultana Zervoudaki
    • 2
  • Edna Granéli
    • 3
  1. 1.Facultad de Ciencias del MarUniversidad de VigoVigoSpain
  2. 2.Hellenic Center for Marine ResearchMavro Lithari, Anavissos AtticaGreece
  3. 3.Marine Sciences DepartmentUniversity of KalmarKalmarSweden

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