Cyanotoxins, biosynthetic gene clusters, and factors modulating cyanotoxin biosynthesis

Fahim Bashir, Arif Bashir, Noureddine Bouaïcha (Lead / Corresponding author), Liang Chen (Lead / Corresponding author), Geoffrey A. Codd, Brett Neilan, Wen-Li Xu, Laila Ziko, Vishnu D. Rajput, Tatiana Minkina, Renan Silva Arruda, Bashir Ahmad Ganai (Lead / Corresponding author)

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    7 Citations (Scopus)


    Cyanobacterial harmful algal blooms (CHABs) are a global environmental concern that encompasses public health issues, water availability, and water quality owing to the production of various secondary metabolites (SMs), including cyanotoxins in freshwater, brackish water, and marine ecosystems. The frequency, extent, magnitude, and duration of CHABs are increasing globally. Cyanobacterial species traits and changing environmental conditions, including anthropogenic pressure, eutrophication, and global climate change, together allow cyanobacteria to thrive. The cyanotoxins include a diverse range of low molecular weight compounds with varying biochemical properties and modes of action. With the application of modern molecular biology techniques, many important aspects of cyanobacteria are being elucidated, including aspects of their diversity, gene-environment interactions, and genes that express cyanotoxins. The toxicological, environmental, and economic impacts of CHABs strongly advocate the need for continuing, extensive efforts to monitor cyanobacterial growth and to understand the mechanisms regulating species composition and cyanotoxin biosynthesis. In this review, we critically examined the genomic organization of some cyanobacterial species that lead to the production of cyanotoxins and their characteristic properties discovered to date.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number241
    Number of pages24
    JournalWorld Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology
    Issue number9
    Publication statusPublished - 3 Jul 2023


    • Cyanobacteria Toxins
    • Marine Toxins/metabolism
    • Ecosystem
    • Fresh Water/microbiology
    • Cyanobacteria/metabolism
    • Multigene Family
    • Microcystins/genetics
    • Anatoxins
    • Cyanotoxins
    • Biosynthesis
    • Environmental factors
    • Gene expression
    • Saxitoxins
    • Cylindrospermopsins
    • Microcystins

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
    • Physiology
    • Biotechnology


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