In the fall of 2020, our partner community group, Juntos Podemos Ciudar Nuestro Rio Duwamish (Juntos), held a series of three webinars for fishers in Spanish, Vietnamese, and Khmer using videos that we helped create to teach how to safely and legally catch and prepare salmon from the Duwamish River. Because salmon spend only a small portion of their life in the Duwamish River, they are the safest fish to eat from the polluted waterway.
On November 9th, trainees Hao Wang and Megumi Matsushita presented at the Pacific Northwest Association of Toxicologists (PANWAT) regional meeting.
To date, research into the development of Alzheimer's Disease has focused primarily on genetics. Less attention has been given to the role of environmental exposures. However, research from UW SRP Project 2, carried out in the lab of Zhengui Xia, suggested that exposures to contaminants are also relevant, and, surprisingly, that cadmium may play an important role.
For decades, public spaces along Seattle's Duwamish River have had names with numerical subjects like "Terminal 105 Park" and "Turning Basin #3." These names align with the Lower Duwamish Waterway's identity as an industrialized and polluted Superfund Site, but ignore the river's cultural and spiritual significance to the Salish peoples and downplay the vision that drives current efforts at clean-up and ecological restoration.
In December, most of Washington's outer coast was closed to Dungeness crab fishing due to high levels of domoic acid. Domoic acid is a neurotoxin produced by a type of marine algae known as Pseudonitzschia that can accumulate in shellfish and other marine organisms through their diet. In the past, people have died from eating seafood containing domoic acid. Now careful regulation prevents major domoic acid poisoning events in humans.
On October 5th, the University of Washington Superfund Research Program (UW SRP) got a new Research Administrator- Emily Patridge. Patridge comes to us from the UW Health Sciences Library where she served as the Assistant Director of Clinical Research and Data Services for the last four years. In her new position, she splits her time between the UW SRP and the University of Washington Interdisciplinary Center for Exposures, Diseases, Genomics and Environment, which is also funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.
Dr. Clement Furlong, a principal investigator on Project 3, Dr.
Jim Gawell and other researchers from UW SRP Project Four are providing porewater peepers for a study of lakes in Pierce County by Jeff Tepper at the University of Puget Sound. Along with the loan, they provided a demonstration of how to set up and deploy the equipment.
The first of the lakes to be studied with the porewater peepers will be Lake Waughop Lake. Fieldwork will begin in early July.
Less than 200 years ago, Seattle's Duwamish River meandered over fertile plains, brimming with salmon as it drained a more than 1,600 square mile watershed from Mount Rainier to Elliott Bay in Puget Sound. The native Duwamish people lived in longhouses along its banks and early settlers farmed nearby.
On June 24th, the UW SRP and the Northwest Toxic Communities Coalition hosted the second in a two-part series on Institutional Controls (ICs). Professor Cliff Villa of the University of New Mexico, Piper Peterson of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and James Rasmussen of the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition discussed details of the EPA's IC Plan for fishers at the Duwamish Waterway Superfund Site and lessons it offers for communities working to protect fishers at other contaminated sites.
Fishing for fun, food, and cultural connection is a way of life in the Pacific Northwest.
With fishing and other outdoor activities now allowed as part of the state's phased approach to reopening during the COVID-19 pandemic, recreational fishing is ramping up on local waterways.
But for those fishing the heavily polluted Lower Duwamish Waterway in Seattle, the fish they catch come with unsafe levels of carcinogens that include heavy metals and PCBs, or polychlorinated biphenyls.
Congratulations to Superfund Research Program (SRP) trainees, Dr. Hao Wang and Jogen Atone for being awarded a mutual exchange KC Donnelly externship! Dr. Wang is a trainee on the University of Washington (UW) SRP Project Two supervised by Dr. Zhengui Xia. Jogen Atone is a trainee with the University of California, Davis (UC Davis) SRP under the supervision of Director Dr. Bruce Hammock.
The KC Donnelly externship will support Dr. Wang to spend two months training at the UC Davis SRP under the guidance of Dr. Hammock while Atone will train with Dr. Xia at the UW SRP.