Blue-green Algae (Cyanobacteria)
Cyanobacteria is one of the oldest types of lifeforms on Earth and is found primarily in freshwater systems. There are thousands of species of cyanobacteria and many are known to produce a variety of toxins.
Cyanobacteria is a photosynthetic microorganism that processes sunlight, nitrogen and phosphorous to live. They can regualate their position in the water column for optimal light and thrive in warm, nutrient-rich fresh or brackish water with low turbulence.
Microcystis and Anabaena are two of the most common cyanobacteria found in estuarine systems today. These bacteria are known to produce cyanotoxins dangerous to humans and animals. Microcystin and Anatoxin are classes of hepatoxin and neurotoxin, affecting the liver and brain, respectively.
Human and animal exposure to Cyantoxins comes in three primary forms of contact:
- Dermal contact
- Inhalation or aspiration from aerosolized surface water
Related News Stories
Harmful Algal Blooms
Blue-green algae has been found in at least 5 different canals in southeast Cape Coral. The Calusa Waterkeeper, John Cassani, said stormwater runoff and warmer waters are likely to blame. He advises nearby residents to do their best to stay inside and change their A/C filters.
Blue-green algae have once again been found in Cape Coral canals. Calusa Waterkeeper John Cassani says these blooms are happening more and more. There are algae in five separate canals in Southeast Cape Coral.
Innovative Air Monitoring Device to be Presented at the Waterkeeper Alliance Global Conference in Washington
After pioneering a new monitoring device and releasing initial results, Calusa Waterkeeper board member Manuel Aparicio IV, PhD, will be presenting a workshop, “Airborne HAB Monitoring” about this ground-breaking research at the Waterkeeper Alliance Global Conference in Washington D.C.
There’s new information about airborne toxins in Southwest Florida as research expands. Concerns are growing about the impact on the community and the air we breathe. The Calusa Waterkeeper set up air samplers in various locations around Lee County last year after the red tide and blue-green algae outbreak in 2018.
A first-of-its-kind field study of Southwest Florida air and water didn’t find widespread cyanobacteria toxins however, it did find several neurotoxins as well as three forms of BMAA, a neurotoxin linked to grave brain diseases.
Calusa Waterkeeper and Wyoming-based Brain Chemistry Labs collaborate on a groundbreaking device to research airborne toxins from harmful algal blooms utilizing the most sensitive technology available for detecting harmful algal bloom (HAB) toxins,
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