Biomarker responses in Macoma nasuta (Bivalvia) exposed to sediments from northern San Francisco Bay

Ingeborg Werner, Swee J Teh, Seema Datta, XiaoQiao Lu, Thomas M. Young

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Our study investigates biomarker responses and survival of Macoma nasuta exposed to sediments collected from six locations in northern San Francisco Bay. Biomarkers analyzed were stress proteins (hsp70) in gill, mantle and digestive gland, lysosomal membrane damage and histopathologic lesions. Sediments and clam tissues were analyzed for a comprehensive suite of heavy metals and trace organic pollutants. Sediment grain size and organic carbon content were determined. Clams accumulated metals, polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and organochlorine pesticides (aldrin and p,p-DDT and its metabolites p,p-DDD and p,p-DDE). Pearson and Spearman correlation analysis revealed that mortality, hsp70 in gill and histopathologic lesion scores in gonads, and lysosomal membrane damage were significantly correlated with tissue concentrations of DDT and/or its metabolites. Tissue concentrations of metals, in particular nickel, chromium, and copper, were associated with macrophage aggregates in digestive gland and germ cell necrosis. Cadmium was linked to mortality and lysosomal membrane damage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)299-304
Number of pages6
JournalMarine Environmental Research
Issue number2-5
StatePublished - Aug 2004


  • Biomarkers
  • Histopathology
  • Lysosomal membrane damage
  • Macoma nasuta
  • San Francisco Bay
  • Sediments
  • Stress proteins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aquatic Science
  • Oceanography
  • Environmental Science(all)


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