Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 19 Issue 02

View Issue TOC
Volume 19, No. 2
Pages 107 - 109


BOX • Aerosolized Florida Red Tide Toxins and Human Health Effects

By William M. Abraham  and Daniel G. Baden 
Jump to
Citation Copyright & Usage
First Paragraph

Reports of airway irritant effects from Florida red tide have been documented since 1844 (Baden et al., 2005). In general, it is well established that persons inhaling marine aerosols containing polyether brevetoxins (PbTxs) produced by the dinoflagellate, Karenia brevis (K. brevis), can exhibit either upper and/or lower airway symptoms (see Backer and McGillicuddy, this issue). Upper-airway symptoms include cough, sneezing, rhinorrhea (runny nose), a burning sensation in the nose and throat, and watery eyes (Kirkpatrick et al., 2004). Lower-airway symptoms include chest tightness and wheezing and/or shortness of breath, all of which reflect difficulty in breathing (Kirkpatrick et al., 2004). Normal individuals, as well as those with pre-existing airway diseases such as asthma (i.e., susceptible populations), can be affected, although anecdotal evidence has indicated that susceptible populations are at greater risk (Asai et al., 1982).


Abraham, W.M., and D.G. Baden. 2006. Aerosolized Florida red tide toxins and human health effects. Oceanography 19(2):107–109, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.2006.73.

Copyright & Usage

This is an open access article made available under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution, and reproduction in any medium or format as long as users cite the materials appropriately, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate the changes that were made to the original content. Images, animations, videos, or other third-party material used in articles are included in the Creative Commons license unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If the material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission directly from the license holder to reproduce the material.