The occurrence of TTX in ciliated protozoa was investigated in order to clarify tetrodotoxin (TTX) accumulation mechanisms in marine organisms. Tissue culture bioassay, HPLC, and GC-MS analyses confirmed the occurrence of TTX in Euplotes mutabilis and also in bacteria isolated from the culture medium. Fluorescently labeled bacteria (FLB) were prepared with those bacteria, and predation by E. mutabilis was observed. The results indicated that TTX in bacteria can be transferred to higher trophic levels through the food chain.
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