Participant: Noureddine Bouaïcha

Cyanobacterial blooms are a global threat to the aquatic ecosystems. Different species of bloom-forming cyanobacteria are known to biosynthesize a wide range of chemical classes of toxins (cyanotoxins) such as microcystins, which represent the most structurally diverse group of cyanotoxins and the most commonly found in cyanobacterial blooms. The contamination of surface waters by these cyanotoxins can cause water quality problems for aquaculture, livestock and agriculture, and sanitary hazard for human and animals. In this research axis, we focus on the study of the transfer of microcystins in the food chain and the associated health and environmental risks. Two main research areas are developed:

1) Diversity and characterization of new microcystin congeners (in collaboration with Biofluids and Biosystems Modeling Laboratory, Dalhousie University Faculty of Agriculture, Canada),

2) Effects and bioaccumulation of microcystins in fish and crop plants (in collaboration with Biodiversity and Valorization of Plant Resources Unit, Faculty of Science and Technology, University of Nouakchott, Mauritania).