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deadlycyanobacteria
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creative.aquatics
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Joined: 19 Apr 2005
Location: Vancity, BC, Canada

PostPosted: 2005.04.26(Tue)16:05    Post subject: deadlycyanobacteria Reply with quote

last saturday on the front page of the vancouver sun "potent toxin found in brains of dead alzheimer's victims". the potent toxin, BMAA (beta-n-methyl-amino-l alanine) has been found in the brains of 9 canadians who died of alzheimer's disease. the same neurotoxin has been found from people in guam who died of dementia. this has put up a red flag in the alzheimer society of canada. more studies are currently being done.

I work in several different fish tanks daily throughout vancouver. is it safe for me to be exposed to cyanobacteria (blue green algae) for long periods of time? Exclamation Question joel.
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Darkblade48
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Joined: 21 Jun 2004
Location: Toronto, Ontario. Canada

PostPosted: 2005.04.26(Tue)18:35    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not quite sure what BGA has to do with the BMAA that you have mentionned, but yes, I would imagine it's quite safe to work with tanks that are infested with BGA.

As always, just be sure to wash your hands very well before and after placing your hands into the aquarium (with soap if you're done for the day). Wash up to your elbows at the minimum, and you should be fine.

I'm not sure if this is applicable, but I wouldn't eat the BGA either Very Happy
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creative.aquatics
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Joined: 19 Apr 2005
Location: Vancity, BC, Canada

PostPosted: 2005.04.26(Tue)19:47    Post subject: bga Reply with quote

bga is cyanobacteria which produces bmaa. bmaa is bad for you. yes? no?
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benedictj
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Joined: 05 Dec 2004
Location: new york, ny

PostPosted: 2005.04.26(Tue)20:23    Post subject: Re: bga Reply with quote

creative.aquatics wrote:
bga is cyanobacteria which produces bmaa. bmaa is bad for you. yes? no?


Here's a decent link I found-
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/medicalnews.php?newsid=22326

The key part, from what I read, is that for the equation to be complete BMAA must be ingested. So, if you have it in your tank, wash up extra well after working on your tank (you always should anyway since there are other pathogens out there)

To me, it seems somewhat like radon gas. The stuff is always there, you can't avoid it. As long as you're aware of it and take preventitive measures, you should be okay. It is pretty disconcerting that it could be linked to public water quality systems, though.
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Jake
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creative.aquatics
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Joined: 19 Apr 2005
Location: Vancity, BC, Canada

PostPosted: 2005.04.26(Tue)20:31    Post subject: deadly cyanobacteria Reply with quote

thanks for the link, jake. it was a big help.
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benedictj
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Joined: 05 Dec 2004
Location: new york, ny

PostPosted: 2005.04.26(Tue)21:30    Post subject: Reply with quote

No problem. Both because of the potential safety issues to we keepers, as well as the public health implications, this is definitely a worthy topic for all of us to keep very close tabs on. Obviously, even with safety precautions, if the link turns out to be definitive, we could all be at an increased risk.

I've set up a google headline update alert- if anything else relevant comes up, I'll definitely post up more links. Anyone else who might come across info should do the same. This has the potential to be a very important conversation, IMO.
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Jake
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