Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 18 Issue 02

View Issue TOC
Volume 18, No. 2
Pages 228 - 237


Monitoring Approaches for Early Warning of Domoic Acid Events in Washington State

By Vera L. Trainer  and Marc Suddleson 
Jump to
Citation Copyright & Usage
First Paragraph

On the U.S. west coast, blooms of the potentially toxic diatom Pseudo-nitzschia can cause amnesic shellfish poisoning (ASP), resulting in economic impacts to coastal economies and public health concerns. The transfer of toxin, via filter feeding of Pseudo-nitzschia or ingestion of filter feeding organisms, to shellfish, crustaceans, seabirds, finfish, and marine mammals has led to mortalities of brown pelicans, Brandt’s cormorants, and sea lions. A unique problem on the outer coast of the Olympic peninsula in Washington State, is that the Pacific razor clam, Siliqua patula (Figure 1), can retain high concentrations of the algal toxin, domoic acid (DA), for over one year (Wekell et al., 1994; Adams et al., 2000). During toxic events, recreational, commercial, and tribal subsistence harvest of clams, valued at over $20 million annually (Anderson, 1995), is suspended and public health is threatened.


Trainer, V.L., and M. Suddleson. 2005. Monitoring approaches for early warning of domoic acid events in Washington state. Oceanography 18(2):228–237, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.2005.56.

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.