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New Research Defines Origin and Dynamic Behavior of Gulf of Mexico Dead Zone

Reducing the size of the widespread area of hypoxia (low oxygen) in the northern Gulf of Mexico—known as the “Dead Zone”—represents one of the nation’s crucial water management challenges. Recent NCCOS-sponsored research has led to the development of a new tool to assess hypoxia formation and its response to key physical and biological drivers. Dr. […]

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Working to Understand and Remedy Dead Zone in Green Bay, Wisconsin

Since 2010, NCCOS-sponsored scientists have studied Green Bay, Wisconsin to better understand the source, dynamics, and controls of low oxygen (hypoxia) conditions that have resulted in a “dead zone” in the southern end of the bay. Considered key to understanding hypoxia in Green Bay, researchers have focused on the land surrounding the bay, which accounts […]

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Can Asian Carp Barriers Protect the Great Lakes?

Invasive species such as zebra mussels have substantially changed the Great Lakes, with Asian carp poised to become the next and most serious invasive threat. Scientists leading a pioneering NCCOS-sponsored project to forecast the spread and bioeconomic impacts of aquatic invasive species have conducted an expert-based analysis of strategies to keep Asian carp out of Lake Michigan. The […]

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Programmed Cell Death and the Decline of Harmful Algal Blooms

Programmed cell death, or self-induced cell mortality, is the subject of increasing attention and research efforts. All phytoplankton blooms decline for a variety of reasons—nutrient depletion, zooplankton grazing, virus infections, sedimentation—but programmed cell death as a means to bloom termination is a new concept, and one not well understood. Dr. Deana Erdner, an NCCOS-sponsored researcher […]

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Common Brevetoxin Metabolite Found in Gulf of Mexico Oysters May Not be a Health Risk

Brevetoxin B2—an abundant shellfish metabolite of brevetoxin found in Gulf of Mexico oysters—does not readily pass through an intestinal barrier, rendering it unlikely to cause neurotoxic shellfish poisoning. The B2 metabolite is produced by oysters and many other animals by attaching the amino acid cysteine to the brevetoxin that is consumed by shellfish during blooms […]

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NOAA Administrator Honors NCCOS Employees

At the 2013 NOAA Administrator and Technology Transfer Awards ceremony, Acting NOAA Administrator Dr. Kathryn Sullivan recognized four NCCOS employees for accomplishments that brought unusual credit to NOAA and the Department of Commerce. The following NCCOS employees received the Administrator’s Award: Kimberly Puglise, Felix Martinez, and Michael Dowgiallo for “leading foundational research and consensus building […]

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NCCOS Expertise Contributes to U.S. National Climate Assessment

Four NCCOS scientists wrote a NOAA technical report on “Oceans and Marine Resources in a Changing Climate” that led to a chapter in the Third National Climate Assessment (2013), produced by the U.S. Global Change Research Program. Carol Auer, Quay Dortch, Elizabeth Jewett, and Cary Lopez participated in this comprehensive review, wherein 63 experts examined […]

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California Red Tides and Other Algal Blooms Explained

The importance of algal blooms to the ecology of the ocean, including harmful red tides, is highlighted in a new “podcast” from the California nonprofit “Thank You Ocean Campaign.”  The podcast, entitled “Should We Fear Red tides?,” features Dr. Raphael Kudela from the University of California Santa Cruz. Dr. Kudela explains why harmful algal blooms […]

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