Tox Tuesday: How were Seattle’s mussels contaminated with opioids?

Earlier this year, mussels fished from Puget Sound — the beautiful ocean inlet in the northeast corner of the U.S. state of Washington — tested positive for opioids.

No, the shellfish weren’t doing drugs. Rather, unprecedented levels of opioid prescriptions and opioid abuse have caused even the environment to be affected.

Opioid usage, both legitimate […]

What’s the difference? Shellfish, crustaceans and mollusks

Crustaceans and shellfish and mollusks — oh my!

Shellfish allergies are among the most common in the world, with countries around the globe implementing regulatory guidelines for their labeling. Interestingly, it’s an allergen that often manifests itself in the food-allergic person’s adulthood, with 60% of those allergic experiencing their first reaction after the age of […]

Scottish authorities detect ‘red alert’ levels of shellfish toxins

Reports of shellfish toxins have been increasing in and around Scotland recently — in particular, the toxins that cause diarrhetic shellfish poisoning (DSP) and paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP).

These reports have strong implications for the shellfish industry in the area. Harvesters are limited in where they operate, and much of the industry is increasing testing […]

Researchers seek ways to decrease algal blooms from phosphorous runoff

Previously on the Neogen blog, we’ve written about how rising ocean temperatures are worsening the risk of shellfish poisoning due to the increasing presence of toxic algal blooms that thrive in warm waters.

Today we’re taking a look at another contributing factor to these algal blooms: phosphorus runoff.

First off: What is phosphorus runoff, and […]

As ocean temps rise, so does risk for shellfish poisoning

It’s not unusual for people to have shellfish allergies, but even non-allergic people can get sick from eating shellfish, thanks to contamination that occurs when the filter-feeding sea creatures take in toxins in warm ocean waters. Now, research is showing that the algae and bacteria that cause these toxins are becoming more prevalent as sea […]

As food allergies rise, researchers dig deeper

A group of medical researchers are taking a new approach to examining food allergy patterns in the United States.

Instead of using traditional methods to learn about people with food allergies, the team has undertaken the monumental task of analyzing the medical records of a whopping 2.7 million patients.

“Recent reports suggest that food allergies […]

Researchers: Warmer oceans threaten clam digging

Spring has sprung, and with it come the seasonal activities we know and love: gardening, outdoor walks, picnics at the park and, for plenty of Pacific Northwest residents, clam digging. However, researchers have identified a big factor that may heighten the risks of this popular activity.

After analyzing two decades of climate data from the […]

National Food Safety Education Month: Norovirus infographic

For more than 20 years, September has been recognized as National Food Safety Education Month. The theme for 2016 is Norovirus, which is highlighted in the below infographic. For more information on National Food Safety Education Month and Norovirus, click here.

Domoic acid continues to hamper west coast shellfish economy

After a difficult summer for shellfish, levels of domoic acid (DA) are slowly starting to decrease after peaking in late spring and early summer. Linked to an algae bloom along the U.S. west coast, the high levels of the toxin caused some of the largest shellfish closures ever, a recent article states.

While the closures […]

Biotoxin outbreak impacting California coast sea life

The spread of algal blooms along stretches of the California’s Central Coast has produced an outbreak of a deadly biotoxin, and resulted in the deaths of large numbers of marine animals.

Scientists have identified the marine biotoxin domoic acid as the culprit in the outbreak. Domoic acid is produced by algae and accumulates in shellfish […]