Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Detection of Microcystins in Lake Manatee and Lake Washington – Two Florida Drinking Water Systems

Version 1 : Received: 2 April 2021 / Approved: 5 April 2021 / Online: 5 April 2021 (12:25:15 CEST)

A peer-reviewed article of this Preprint also exists.

Journal reference: Frontiers in Water 2022
DOI: 10.3389/frwa.2022.899572


Clean, fresh, and safe drinking water is essential to human health and well-being. Occasionally, chemical pollutants taint surface water quality used for consumption. Microcystins (MCs) are toxic heptapeptides produced by freshwater cyanobacteria. These secondary metabolites can reach hazardous concentrations, impairing surface drinking water supplies. Inconsistent screening of MCs is not uncommon in Florida waters as no provisional guidance value is established to protect public health. The occurrence of MCs in Lake Manatee and Lake Washington was monitored over the potential peak algae bloom season (June-August). An indirect competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (icELISA) quantified total MCs in two drinking water systems. Varied concentrations occurred between June and July, whereas concentrations peaked in August. Overall, MC prevalence was higher in Lake Manatee than Lake Washington. Colorimetric assays measured phosphate and nitrite in environmental water samples. Phosphate and nitrite concentrations strongly correlated with total MCs (p < 0.01). The results indicate the intrinsic nature of environmental MCs in surface drinking water supplies and the need to examine hepatotoxin dynamics to preserve drinking water quality in community served areas.


Drinking water; Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay; Harmful algal blooms; Microcystin

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