Programmed cell death induced by modified clay in controlling Prorocentrum donghaiense bloom

Xiuxian Song , Hena Ji , Zhiming Yu , Liyan He , Jianan Zhu , Xihua Cao


Received October 09, 2020,Revised , Accepted March 24, 2021, Available online April 24, 2021

Volume 33,2021,Pages 123-134

Modified clay (MC), an effective material used for the emergency elimination of algal blooms, can rapidly reduce the biomass of harmful algal blooms (HABs) via flocculation. After that, MC can still control bloom population through indirect effects such as oxidative stress, which was initially proposed to be related to programmed cell death (PCD) at molecular level. To further study the MC induced cell death in residual bloom organisms, especially identifying PCD process, we studied the physiological state of the residual Prorocentrum donghaiense. The experimental results showed that flocculation changed the physiological state of the residual cells, as evidenced by growth inhibition and increased reactive oxygen species production. Moreover, this research provides biochemical and ultrastructural evidence showing that MC induces PCD in P. donghaiense. Nuclear changes were observed, and increased caspase-like activity, externalization of phosphatidylserine and DNA fragmentation were detected in MC-treated groups and quantified. And the mitochondrial apoptosis pathway was activated in both MC-treated groups. Besides, the features of MC-induced PCD in a unicellular organism were summarized and its concentration dependent manner was proved. All our preliminary results elucidate the mechanism through which MC can further control HABs by inducing PCD and suggest a promising application of PCD in bloom control.

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