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NCCOS Transfers Toxin Detection Method to Maine Start-Up Company to Provide Testing of Paralytic Shellfish Toxins

Scientists from the National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS) provided training on the NCCOS-developed receptor binding assay (RBA) for paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) toxins to visiting scientist Darcie Couture, Lead Scientist from Resource Access International, LLC (RAI LLC) in Brunswick, Maine. The RBA for PSP toxins is a rapid, cost-effective test that measures algal […]

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2013 New England Seasonal ‘Red Tide’ Forecast: Moderate

Coastal areas around New England should prepare for a “moderate” red tide this spring and summer, according to scientists from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. This seasonal forecast is based on samples of algal cysts taken from the ocean floor last year as indicators of this year’s bloom severity. For the first time, the team also used […]

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Algae’s hunger ramps up red tide toxins | HeraldTribune.com

The mysterious red tide toxin that has killed a record number of manatees and brought countless dead fish to Southwest Florida beaches over the past few months could finally have an explanation: The algae that produce the toxin are hungry. A significant new study of the algae, Karenia Brevis (sic), suggests that the organisms release […]

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Recreational Water Pathogen Detection Workshops Build Skills for State Labs

The North Carolina Biotechnology Center funded NOAA and academic researchers to develop a training facility for public health officials and resource managers in advanced molecular methods to detect pathogens and harmful algae species more quickly and effectively. The first workshop, held March 11 – 15, 2013,  covered quantitative polymerase chain reaction techniques to detect Enterococcus, the […]

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NOAA Test Method to be Demonstrated to International Shellfish Authorities

A NOAA method to test for paralytic shellfish toxins will be demonstrated to scientists, regulators, policymakers, and industry representatives in Sydney, Australia from March 18-22. The technique, which was recently accepted as an Official Method of Analysis by the Association of Official Analytical Chemists, is a candidate for replacing the current approach for regulatory testing […]

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Gulf of Mexico Algae Shield Themselves with Toxins When Hungry

A species of algae responsible for red tides plaguing Gulf coast communities protects itself by becoming highly toxic when it’s hungry and vulnerable to being eaten by predators, say scientists from NOAA’s National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science and North Carolina State University. The red tide organism, called Karenia brevis, reacts to low levels of nutrients–particularly phosphorus–by […]

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Research Provides Parameters to Model Ciguatoxin’s Effects on Seals and Humans

A single-celled plant known as Gambierdiscus is responsible for the most common cause of harmful algae poisoning worldwide: ciguatera.  The algae’s potent neurotoxin–called ciguatoxin–is found in over 400 species of fish and is conservatively estimated to sicken more than 50,000 people every year. Two years ago, researchers from NOAA’s National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science […]

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