AB - Vol. 9, No. 1 - Feature article

Fishing at the Santa Cruz Wharf: anglers who consume the fish they catch may become contaminated by domoic acid, a neurotoxin produced by Pseudo-nitzschia (inset). Photos: Fernanda Mazzillo, Rozalind Jester (inset)

Mazzillo FFM, Pomeroy C, Kuo J, Ramondi PT, Prado R, Silver MW


Angler exposure to domoic acid via consumption of contaminated fishes


Domoic acid (DA) is a neurotoxin produced by some diatoms of the genus Pseudo-nitzschia. Fishes are vectors of this toxin to marine birds and California sea lions. Humans can be exposed to DA mainly through the consumption of shellfish. Mazzillo and co-workers demonstrate that anglers who consume their catch are also exposed to DA. Exposure is a function of the species and the body parts of the fish consumed, and also depends on methods and duration of fish storage, as well as on the DA levels in the seawater at the time when the fish are caught.


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