Key Questions and Recent Research Advances on Harmful Algal Blooms in Benthic Systems

  • Elisa BerdaletEmail author
  • Patricia A. Tester
Part of the Ecological Studies book series (ECOLSTUD, volume 232)


The GEOHAB Core Research Project (CRP) Harmful Algal Blooms in Benthic Systems, launched in 2010, focused on toxic and noxious events associated with benthic microalgae, especially the genera Gambierdiscus and Ostreopsis. Both organisms, which produce mucus to attach to benthic substrates (macroalgae, corals, rocks, sand), seem to be expanding to temperate latitudes. Gambierdiscus species produce ciguatoxins that cause ciguatera fish poisoning in humans. Ostreopsis species produce palytoxin and analogues seldom associated with seafood intoxications in the tropics and with massive macrofauna mortalities and respiratory disorders in humans in temperate waters. This chapter summarizes recent progress and identifies future challenges in this research field.



This is a contribution of the GEOHAB Core Research Project on HABs in Benthic Systems.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Marine Sciences (CSIC)BarcelonaSpain
  2. 2.Ocean Tester LLCBeaufortUSA

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