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Event Response Helps Managers Investigate PSP Toxicity in Lobster Tomalley

Event Response Helps Managers Investigate PSP Toxicity in Lobster Tomalley

The NCCOS Event Response Program awarded funds to the states of Maine and New Hampshire to investigate the geographic extent and temporal variability of paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) toxins in lobster hepatopancreas (commonly called ‘tomalley’) and other lobster tissues. In mid-July, preliminary analyses by Maine Department of Marine Resources revealed high levels of PSP toxins in tomalley of some lobsters. These findings prompted the Food and Drug Administration as well as Maine, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts to issue advisory warnings against eating lobster tomalley. NCCOS Event Response-supported research will provide managers with information required for successful management of this fishery, such as the geographic extent of PSP toxins in lobster tomalley, the dietary source of the toxins for lobsters, and toxin retention time in lobster tissues. Photo credit: Maine Department of Marine Resources.

The six test sites in Maine and New Hampshire proposed for investigating PSP toxins in lobster tomalley.

The six test sites in Maine and New Hampshire proposed for investigating PSP toxins in lobster tomalley. Photo credit: Maine Department of Marine Resources.

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