Turkish Journal of Biology




Diatoms represent an important class of aquatic phototrophs. They are not only one of the major contributors to global carbon fixation, but they also play a key role in the biogeochemical cycling of silica. Molecular identification methods based on conserved DNA sequences, such as internal transcribed spacer (ITS) have revolutionized our knowledge and understanding of conventional taxonomy. In this study, we aimed to compare the conventional identification methods with molecular identification methods. To do so, we isolated 4 diatom samples from the coast at Urla and characterized them using light microscopy (LM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) according to morphological features. Then we amplified ITS regions using a conventional polymerase chain reaction (PCR), sequenced the PCR products, and analyzed the sequences using bioinformatic tools. Bioinformatic analysis indicated that the isolated species had high sequence similarity to Pseudo-nitzschia delicatissima, Achnanthes taeniata, Amphora coffeaeformis, and Cylindrotheca closterium. We think that molecular identification methods enable rapid and more reliable identification of diatom species and are crucial for monitoring harmful algal blooms.


Diatom, ITS, LM, SEM, molecular characterization

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