|REAL-TIME PCR ASSAYS FOR THE
DETECTION OF HAB SPECIES FROM
BRACKISH LAGOONAL PONDS IN SOUTH CAROLINA,
Workshop on Real-time Coastal Observing Systems
for Ecosystem Dynamics and Harmful
Algal Blooms. Villafranche-sur mer, France. 11-21 June 2003.
Patrick Williams2, Susan B. Wilde2, and Alan J.
Department of Natural Resources, Marine Resources Research Institute,
Johnson Road, Charleston, SC 29412, USA; Belle W. Baruch Institute for
Research, University of South Carolina, P.O. Box 1630, Georgetown, SC
In 2001, the South
Carolina Harmful Algal Bloom Program
(SCHABP) extended its surveillance efforts to include brackish lagoonal
retention ponds associated with housing developments and golf courses.
ponds are numerous along the South Carolina (SC), USA
coast (> 1500 ponds over 1 acre) and are routinely used for
activities (fishing, crabbing, swimming, skiing). They are also
and our results suggest that they are “natural incubators” for HABs.
2001-2002, 107 blooms from 9 different HAB species (Chattonella
Chattonella verruculosa, Fibrocapsa japonica, Heterosigma akashiwo,
micrum, Kryptoperidinium foliaceum, Pfiesteria piscicida, Pfiesteria
and Prymnesium parvum) were documented in SC brackish
the exception of K. foliaceum, none of these were known to form
in SC. Several of these blooms were associated with fish kills and/or
measurable toxic activity. Rapid
quantitative detection of these HAB species is of central importance to
facilitate understanding bloom ecology and direct proper response.
describe the application of real-time PCR assays for the detection of
HAB species recently observed in SC waters. Real-time PCR offers a
sensitive means of detecting HAB species, and can provide quantitative
information with appropriate “ground-truthing”. Real-time PCR has been
incorporated into SCHABP routine monitoring and fish kill response
and integrated with microscopic and HPLC pigment analyses to provide
assessment of HAB species identity.