NOAA Awards Grant to University of Washington to Research Causes of Puget Sound Red Tides
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration awarded a $153,388 grant to the University of Washington in Seattle and Tacoma, to fund research into how red tides are initiated in northwest coastal waters. NOAA is an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce.
The grant is from the Ecology and Oceanography of Harmful Algal Bloom program, managed by NOAA Ocean Service. The research will focus on distribution and germination of Alexandrium resting cysts in Puget Sound, which causes toxic build up in certain shellfish. This will allow local resource managers to better understand environmental factors affecting its growth. Alexandrium causes paralytic shellfish poisoning in northwest U.S. coastal waters, a potentially fatal neurological disorder that can result when humans consume shellfish that have accumulated toxins while feeding on Alexandrium dinoflagellates.