Neurotoxic cyanobacteria grow on aquatic plants and have already caused fatal animal intoxications. Recent improvements of water quality in lakes are the result of reduced anthropogenic nutrient influx. As a consequence, the biomass of planktonic cyanobacteria decreases and the overall clarity of inland waters increases. Light can now penetrate much deeper and wide benthic areas become habitable to aquatic plants and toxic benthic cyanobacteria. However, little is known about the extend, the diversity and the dynamics of the newly established benthic phototrophic communities.
In DIVATOX we strive for knowledge about the interactions between different aquatic plants and their associated neurotoxic cyanobacteria. The focus is on the dynamics of toxin production and the role of abiotic environmental factors as well as microbial interactions. Our goal is to determine- and prospectively estimate health risks for humans and animals as well as to enable decision makes with specific recommendations for action.
CyanoCenter, German Environment Agency (UBA)
Technical University of Berlin (TUB)
Christoph van Thriel
Leibniz Research Centre for Working Environment and Human Factors (IfADo)