Toxic algae

Funded by: The Norwegian Research Council
Project Coordinator: NIVA, Wenche Eikrem

NIVA has carried out the project TOXICALGAE (Toxic Algae; taxonomy, quantification and early warning) from 2010 to 2015. The main goal of the project was identification and quantification of toxic microalgae.


We used several techniques such as light and electron microscopy and molecular DNA sequencing, and we developed quantitative PCR (polymerase chain reaction) assays that targeted and quantified many of the toxic species that are common in Norwegian waters. We focused on the ichthytoxic species Karenia mikimotoi, Heterosigma akashiwo, Fibrocapsa japonica and Karlodinium veneficum all known to pose problems to fish farming industries around the world. Our results with qPCR were promising and we think qPCR will be a very good supplement and an improvement of present day monitoring that relies for the most part on light microscopy.
Last updated 17.11.2016