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The role of toxin biosynthesis for marine dinoflagellates-An evolutionary ecological approach

Funding: 2012: $177,952
2013: $158,492
2014: $171,972
2015: $172,242

Funding or Partner Organisation: Australian Research Council (ARC Future Fellowships)

Start year: 2012

Summary: Potent biotoxins are produced by a range of marine dinoflagellates (microalgae), and can act as keystone metabolites in structuring marine communities. Using newly discovered information about the genetic basis of dinoflagellate toxins, next generation sequencing, and bioinformatic tools, I will examine the molecular evolution and molecular ecology of toxin production. I will use microarray methods to determine the role of temperature, light and grazer cues in the expression of toxin genes in marine symbiotic, benthic and planktonic dinoflagellates. Novel genetic tools for the monitoring of biotoxins will be developed based on unique genetic processes of dinoflagellates.

Publications:

Hoppenrath, M, Kretzschmar, AL, Kaufmann, MJ & Murray, SA 2019, 'Morphological and molecular phylogenetic identification and record verification of Gambierdiscus excentricus (Dinophyceae) from Madeira Island (NE Atlantic Ocean)', Marine Biodiversity Records, vol. 12, no. 1.
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Kretzschmar, AL, Verma, A, Murray, S, Kahlke, T, Fourment, M & Darling, A 2019, 'Trial by phylogenetics - Evaluating the Multi-Species Coalescent for phylogenetic inference on taxa with high levels of paralogy (Gonyaulacales, Dinophyceae)'.
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Verma, A, Barua, A, Ruvindy, R, Savela, H, Ajani, PA & Murray, SA 2019, 'The Genetic Basis of Toxin Biosynthesis in Dinoflagellates.', Microorganisms, vol. 7, no. 8.
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Verma, A, Kohli, GS, Harwood, DT, Ralph, PJ & Murray, SA 2019, 'Transcriptomic investigation into polyketide toxin synthesis in Ostreopsis (Dinophyceae) species.', Environmental Microbiology, vol. 21, no. 11, pp. 4196-4211.
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Murray, S, Verma, A, Barua, A, Ruvindy, R, Savela, H & Kohli, G 2019, 'The molecular ecology and evolution of toxin synthesis in marine microbial eukaryotes', Genetics Society of Australasia, Melbourne.

Ruvindy, R, Bolch, CJ, MacKenzie, L, Smith, KF & Murray, SA 2018, 'qPCR Assays for the Detection and Quantification of Multiple Paralytic Shellfish Toxin-Producing Species of Alexandrium.', Frontiers in microbiology, vol. 9.
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Verma, A, Kohli, G, Hoppenrath, M, Harwood, T, Kuzhiumparambil, U, Ralph, P & Murray, S 2016, 'Systematics and diversity of the genus Ostreopsis in the East Australian Current region', Marine and Fresh-Water Harmful Algae. Proceedings of the 17th International Conference on Harmful Algae., International Conference on Harmful Algae, International Society for Study of Harmful Algae, Brazil, pp. 84-88.

Ajani, PA, Harwood, DT & murray, SA 2017, 'Recent trends in marine phycotoxins from Australian coastal waters', Marine Drugs, vol. 15, no. 2, pp. 1-20.
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Kohli, GS, Campbell, K, John, U, Smith, KF, Fraga, S, Rhodes, LL & Murray, SA 2017, 'Role of Modular Polyketide Synthases in the Production of Polyether Ladder Compounds in Ciguatoxin-Producing Gambierdiscus polynesiensis and G. excentricus (Dinophyceae).', Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology, pp. 1-16.
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Kretzschmar, AL, Verma, A, Harwood, T, Hoppenrath, M & Murray, S 2017, 'Characterization of Gambierdiscus lapillus sp. nov. (Gonyaulacales, Dinophyceae): a new toxic dinoflagellate from the Great Barrier Reef (Australia).', Journal of phycology, vol. 53, no. 2, pp. 283-297.
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Rhodes, L, Smith, KF, Verma, A, Curley, BG, Harwood, DT, Murray, S, Kohli, GS, Solomona, D, Rongo, T, Munday, R & Murray, SA 2017, 'A new species of Gambierdiscus (Dinophyceae) from the south-west Pacific: Gambierdiscus honu sp. nov.', Harmful Algae, vol. 65, pp. 61-70.
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Van Dolah, FM, Kohli, GS, Morey, JS & Murray, SA 2017, 'Both modular and single-domain Type I polyketide synthases are expressed in the brevetoxin-producing dinoflagellate, Karenia brevis (Dinophyceae)', JOURNAL OF PHYCOLOGY, vol. 53, no. 6, pp. 1325-1339.
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Kohli, GS, John, U, Van Dolah, FM & Murray, SA 2016, 'Evolutionary distinctiveness of fatty acid and polyketide synthesis in eukaryotes', ISME JOURNAL, vol. 10, no. 8, pp. 1877-1890.
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Murray, SA, Smith, K, Rhodes, L, Verma, A, Curley, B, Harwood, DT, Kohli, G, Solomona, D, Rongo, T & Munday, R 2016, 'A new Gambierdiscus species (Dinophyceae) from Rarotonga, Cook Islands: Gambierdiscus cheloniae sp. nov', Harmful Algae, vol. 60, pp. 45-56.
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Murray, SA, Suggett, DJ, Seymour, JR, Doblin, M, Kohli, GS, Fabris, M & Ralph, PJ 2016, 'Unravelling the functional genetics of dinoflagellates: a review of approaches and opportunities', Perspectives in Phycology, vol. 3, no. 1, pp. 37-52.
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Kohli, GS, Farrell, H & Murray, SA 2015, 'Gambierdiscus, the cause of ciguatera fish poisoning: a review of progress in ecology and toxicology' in Luis Botana, Natalia.Vilarino (ed), Climate change and marine and freshwater toxins, Walter de Gruyter, Germany, pp. 273-312.

Murray, SA, Uwe, J & Kremp, A 2015, 'Alexandrium spp.: genetic and ecological factors influencing saxitoxin production and proliferation' in Botana, LM, Louzao, MC & Vilarino, N (eds), Climate Change and Marine and Freshwater Toxins, Walter de Gruyter, Germany, pp. 125-154.

Murray, SA, Orr, R & John, U 2014, 'Can evolutionary ecology help us to design better biotoxin detection tools? The case of Alexandrium.', Marine and Freshwater Algae, International Conference on Harmful Algae, Cawthron Institute, Wellington, New Zealand, pp. 30-33.

Keywords: molecular evolution,biotoxin,marine genomics

FOR Codes: Gene Expression (incl. Microarray and other genome-wide approaches), Aquaculture Oysters, Phycology (incl. Marine Grasses), Control of Plant Pests, Diseases and Exotic Species in Coastal and Estuarine Environments, Molecular Evolution, Coastal and Estuarine Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity