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Phytochemistry. 2014 May;101:76-82. doi: 10.1016/j.phytochem.2014.02.012. Epub 2014 Mar 4.

Diversity of fatty acid composition of symbiotic dinoflagellates in corals: evidence for the transfer of host PUFAs to the symbionts.

Author information

1
A.V. Zhirmunsky Institute of Marine Biology, Far-Eastern Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences, 690041 Vladivostok, Russian Federation. Electronic address: andrey_imbs@hotmail.com.
2
A.V. Zhirmunsky Institute of Marine Biology, Far-Eastern Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences, 690041 Vladivostok, Russian Federation.
3
Institute of Oceanography, Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology, Nha Trang, Viet Nam.
4
Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmosphere Science, University of Miami, Miami, FL, USA.

Abstract

High diversity of fatty acid (FA) composition of endosymbiotic dinoflagellates of the Symbiodinium group (zooxanthellae) isolated from different cnidarian groups has been found. To explain this diversity, FA composition of the total lipids of pure symbiont fractions (SF) and host cell tissue fractions (HF) isolated from one hydrocoral, two soft coral, and seven hard coral species inhabiting the shallow waters of the South China Sea (Vietnam) were compared. Symbiodinium phylogenetic clade designation for each SF was also determined, however, the relationship between the clade designation and FA composition of Symbiodinium was not found. The profiles of marker polyunsaturated FAs (PUFAs) of symbionts (18:4n-3, 18:5n-3, 20:5n-3) did not depend on taxonomic designation of the host and reflected only a specimen-specific diversity of the SF lipids. Several FAs such as 20:0, C24 PUFAs, 22:5n-6, and 18:2n-7 concentrated in HF lipids but were also found in SF lipids. For ten cnidarian species studied, the principal components analysis of total FAs (27 variables) of the symbiotic fractions was performed. The clear division of the symbiotic dinoflagellates according to the host systematic identity was found on a subclass level. This division was mainly caused by the FAs specific for the host lipids of each cnidarian subclasses such as hard corals, soft corals, and hydrocorals. Thus, the coral hosts affect the FA profile of their symbionts and cause the diversity of FA composition of Symbiodinium. The transfer of FAs from the coral host to their symbiotic dinoflagellates and modulation of PUFA biosynthesis in symbionts by the host are considered as possible reasons of the diversity studied.

KEYWORDS:

Cnidaria; Corals; Endosymbiosis; Fatty acids; Hydrocorals; Lipids; PUFAs; Symbiodinium; Symbiotic dinoflagellates

PMID:
24612930
DOI:
10.1016/j.phytochem.2014.02.012
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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