Allelopathic effect of macroalgae Fucus vesiculosus (Ochrophyta) and Coccotylus brodiei (Rhodophyta) on the growth and photosynthesis performance of Baltic cyanobacteria


  • Gracjana Budzałek Institute of Oceanography, University of Gdansk, Av. Piłsudskiego 46, 81-378 Gdynia, Poland
  • Sylwia Śliwińska-Wilczewska Institute of Oceanography, University of Gdansk, Av. Piłsudskiego 46, 81-378 Gdynia, Poland



allelopathy, aqueous extract, brown algae, cyanobacteria, fluorescence, growth, macroalgae, red algae


In aquatic ecosystems, allelopathic activity depends on the production and secretion of allelopathic compounds and their effective dispersal in the environment. In addition, macroalgae have been found to produce active metabolites that affect other organisms that compete with them for nutrients. However, the allelopathic activity of Baltic red and brown macroalgae on filamentous cyanobacteria is still insufficiently understood. Therefore, the main objective of this study was to demonstrate and compare the allelopathic effects of macroalgae Fucus vesiculosus L. and Coccotylus brodiei (Turner) Kütz. on the growth and photosynthetic activity of two Baltic cyanobacteria Aphanizomenon sp. and Nostoc sp. It was found a stimulating effect of different concentrations (5, 25, and 50 µL mL-1) of the aqueous extract obtained from C. brodiei on the number of cells of Nostoc sp. which constituted 108%, 140%, and 147%, respectively, relative to the control treatment.

On the other hand, extracts obtained from F. vesiculosus had no statistically significant effect on the number of cells of the cyanobacteria Aphanizomenon sp. and Nostoc sp. Moreover, the C. brodiei extracts had no significant impact on the growth of Aphanizomenon sp. Furthermore, Baltic macroalgae F. vesiculosus and C. brodiei was able to exert allelopathic effects on photosynthesis performance of Nostoc sp. and Aphanizomenon sp. and compounds produced by them had inhibitory, stimulatory, or no significant effect on the maximum PSII quantum efficiency (Fv/Fm) and the effective quantum yield of PSII photochemistry (ΦPSII). The results obtained in this work constitute an important contribution to the knowledge on the allelopathic activity of Baltic red and brown algae on certain bloom-forming species of filamentous cyanobacteria.


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2021-11-19 — Updated on 2021-11-20

How to Cite

Budzałek, G. ., & Śliwińska-Wilczewska, S. . (2021). Allelopathic effect of macroalgae Fucus vesiculosus (Ochrophyta) and Coccotylus brodiei (Rhodophyta) on the growth and photosynthesis performance of Baltic cyanobacteria. Annales Universitatis Paedagogicae Cracoviensis Studia Naturae, 6, 81–94.



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