Physiological and Metabolic Responses of Freshwater and Brackish-Water Strains of Microcystis aeruginosa Acclimated to a Salinity Gradient: Insight into Salt Tolerance

Type Article
Date 2019-11
Language English
Author(s) Georges Des Aulnois Maxime1, Roux Pauline1, Caruana AmandineORCID1, Réveillon DamienORCID1, Briand EnoraORCID1, Hervé FabienneORCID1, Savar Veronique1, Bormans Myriam2, Amzil ZouherORCID1, Atomi Haruyuki1
Affiliation(s) 1 : Phycotoxins Laboratory, Ifremer, Nantes, France
2 : University of Rennes, CNRS, EcoBio UMR 6553, Rennes, France
Source Applied And Environmental Microbiology (0099-2240) (American Society for Microbiology), 2019-11 , Vol. 85 , N. 21 , P. -
DOI 10.1128/AEM.01614-19
WOS© Times Cited 33
Keyword(s) acclimation, metabolomic, Microcystis, salinity, sucrose, trehalose, ecophysiology

Proliferation of microcystin (MC)-producing Microcystis aeruginosa in brackish waters has been described in several locations and represents a new concern for public and environmental health. While the impact of a sudden salinity increase on M. aeruginosa physiology has been studied, less is known about the mechanisms involved in salt tolerance after acclimation. This study aims to compare the physiological responses of two strains of M. aeruginosa (PCC 7820 and PCC 7806), which were isolated from contrasted environments, to increasing salinities. After acclimation, growth and MC production rates were determined and metabolomic analyses were conducted. For both strains, salinity decreased the biovolume, growth, and MC production rates and induced the accumulation of polyunsaturated lipids identified as monogalactosyldiacylglycerol. The distinct salt tolerances (7.5 and 16.9) obtained between the freshwater (PCC 7820) and the brackish-water (PCC 7806) strains suggested different strategies to cope with the osmotic pressure, as revealed by targeted and untargeted metabolomic analyses. An accumulation of trehalose as the main compatible solute was obtained in the freshwater strain, while sucrose was mainly accumulated in the brackish one. Moreover, distinct levels of glycine betaine and proline accumulation were noted. Altogether, metabolomic analysis illustrated a strain-specific response to salt tolerance, involving compatible solute production.

IMPORTANCE Blooms of Microcystis aeruginosa and the production of microcystins are major issues in eutrophic freshwater bodies. Recently, an increasing number of proliferations of M. aeruginosa in brackish water has been documented. The occurrence of both M. aeruginosa and microcystins in coastal areas represents a new threat for human and environmental health. In order to better describe the mechanisms involved in Microcystis sp. proliferation in brackish water, this study used two M. aeruginosa strains isolated from fresh and brackish waters. High salinity reduced the growth rate and microcystin production rate of M. aeruginosa. In order to cope with higher salinities, the strains accumulated different cyanobacterial compatible solutes, as well as unsaturated lipids, explaining their distinct salt tolerance.

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Georges Des Aulnois Maxime, Roux Pauline, Caruana Amandine, Réveillon Damien, Briand Enora, Hervé Fabienne, Savar Veronique, Bormans Myriam, Amzil Zouher, Atomi Haruyuki (2019). Physiological and Metabolic Responses of Freshwater and Brackish-Water Strains of Microcystis aeruginosa Acclimated to a Salinity Gradient: Insight into Salt Tolerance. Applied And Environmental Microbiology, 85(21), -. Publisher's official version : , Open Access version :