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Old 06-05-2016, 12:10   #31
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

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Lionfish has become a new favorite in Jamaica in the village my mom lives. Since she is also the local doctor I am sure she would have heard of any poisonings, and at least as of last week was still eating it herself two or three times a week.

Clearly the plural of anecdote is not data but this is a lot of anecdotes.


At least until there is a clearer finding I will continue to eat it regularly (it is delicious by the way).
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Old 06-05-2016, 13:12   #32
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

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Well, flies will muck around on ****, so doubt if they are any predictor of food safety. Not sure why someone would want to mess with a lionfish in the first place. Sounds like an act of desperation or poverty to do so.
Yea the reefs are getting wiped out by these critters that's our desperation that's why we kill them
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Old 06-05-2016, 16:03   #33
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Something mentioned in the article about detecting ciguatera in lion fish suggested that the prevalence of ciguatera in lion fish would be roughly proportional to that of the general predator fish of the region.

It is also pretty well known that ciguatoxin is concentrated in the liver of the eater of the ciguatoxic fish, so anyone can have eaten any number of fish with some ciguatoxin before becoming symptomatic. It has no flavor, you can't taste it. So, although we attribute our first ciguatera attack to a Spanish Mackerel near the Lagoon in New Caledonia, in actually, any number of prior fish could have contributed its bit to what becomes a loading dose.

Unfortunately for us, once that loading dose is accumulated, it is stored in the fatty tissues of one's liver, and there it remains. Once you have become symptomatic, your liver slowly excretes the "overage", and over time, you lose all the symptoms. However, you remain quite vulnerable to becoming symptomatic again, even from a low ciguatoxin fish.

I do not know if this is still true, but in the 70's, ciguatera was the leading cause of death among adults in the South Pacific Islands.

We saw some sufferers on another yacht, one time, the woman was too sick to go to emergency, the doctor came to her. For about 2 weeks.

Given our experiences, I'd suggest that those of you who are eating of the lion fish are taking a risk similar to that of smoking: it can take a long time to become symptomatic. Some of those symptoms can kill you. Your choice.

As to trying to get rid of invasive species, good luck.



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Old 07-05-2016, 12:28   #34
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

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Not to be contrary, but I find this report to be complete hogwash. I've lived, worked, and sailed throughout the Caribbean since 2002 and I challenge anyone on this board to show me one confirmed case of someone contracting ciguatera from eating fish in the USVI. any island. I use to hear, "you can't eat fish caught off of the south", "you can't eat reef fish", you can't eat kingfish", and so on. Here is the truth. I have never contracted it and we eat a lot of fish. I have never heard of anyone in the Caribbean contracting it and I'm telling you that West Indians eat ALL FISH. Barracuda too. even the bigger ones. Last, Lionfish is excellent table fare, and is served in many restaurants and fish houses throughout the Caribbean including Off the Hook and "The Green House" on St. Thomas.This is simply another case of someone in an American agency trying to validate their job talking about a fantasy.
I could give you a list of folks in the BVI who suffer from ciguaterra (aka "fish sickness"), so I am sure it's the same in the USVI. Remember, ciguaterra is a toxin that is accumulative, so you might eat fish for quite awhile as it builds up to the level that gives you trouble which helps contribute to people's confidence that they can't get it.. But when you do come down with ciguaterra, it can recur for the rest of your life as it doesn't go away. Some attacks can be quite nasty.
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Old 07-05-2016, 13:12   #35
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pirate Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Damn I'm glad I don't eat fish..
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Old 09-05-2016, 05:45   #36
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

My crew and I suffered through a bout of ciguatera after eating a large Cubera snapper caught trolling along the Jumentos reef in the Bahamas in route to St. Thomas. The symptoms took about 12 hours to become apparent. One of the crew still has residual symptoms 8 years later. I personally know of one fatality in the DR, again involving a cruiser, who fed off of the same fish for several days, fortunately the rest of his family abstained. I would be prudent to check for local knowledge on reef fish that might harbor ciguatera. It is very regional. Definitely stay away from Parrot fish and Cuda anywhere near a coral reef.
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Old 10-05-2016, 16:36   #37
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Well we have had some interesting comments but I am still not sure of the answer to my original post.
Ann as well as others have had first hand experience dealing with the affects of this disease. And I certainly respect her comments regarding the accumulation in ones liver over time. However anecdotally I remember a family of 5 that were treated after eating the same Barracuda at a family gathering. Their ages ran from 30's to children in their early teens. They all presented very sick and ended up in the ICU despite their age. I guess you could postulate that even the young ones may have eaten enough of the toxin in their life to be that symptomatic but who knows ?
What I personally will take home from this to stop eating Lion Fish until more is known. These fish are proportionally small even when compared with a small Barracuda so that may have some significance.
I would hope that those that have any additional knowledge about this toxin will keep us informed. We know so little about Ciguatera.
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Old 11-05-2016, 16:01   #38
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Caradow,

We had a flirtation with the ciguatera text kits. I do think, if a new test were available, like a litmus paper, which you could apply to the fish's liver, certainly some of us would use them!

Just one highly ciguatoxic fish could put a sensitive child in Emergency, and that child should only eat freshwater fish and fish that live where there are no coral reefs hereafter.

With a national debt of 19.x billion (!!!), i don't imagine it's going to be high on the NIH's list of things to investigate..... Too bad.

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Old 11-05-2016, 16:19   #39
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Well, coal miners carried canaries. How do cats react to ciguateric fish liver?
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Old 11-05-2016, 16:30   #40
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Ann, you are so right and also forget the drug companies, market not big enough and many of those who are affected would not have the funds to pay for it.
I suspect the technology is there for a detection kit that actually works however not lucrative enough to justify the expense for research.
Just spoke to a friend who has a very interesting well funded startup pharmaceutical company. Was hoping to get him interested about Ciguatera. He is also a sailor but his first comment was it would be difficult to obtain financial backing for the research for the reasons that were mentioned.
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Old 11-05-2016, 16:34   #41
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Money:
Anyone know a PhD biotechnology candidate, who would want to tie into a KickStarter or other crowdsourced project to develop a test?
All sorts of technologies to test for all sorts of compounds. If nothing else, maybe something genetically tailored so it binds and fluoresces when the toxin is there?
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Old 11-05-2016, 16:37   #42
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Great idea about the cats but if it worked by the cat dying then you would have to bring a hell of a lot of cats with you.
If they simply avoided contaminated liver then you would be golden and you would only need one.
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Old 11-05-2016, 16:45   #43
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

hellosailor you are reading my thoughts!
Did not mention this originally but one of my crew members who was spearing all the Lion Fish we were eating a few weeks ago is a Ph.D chemist in a Drug Company. He loves the little critters so maybe I need to talk with him. Need to get him and my other friend with the startup together. In the mean time don't eat any Lion Fish.
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Old 11-05-2016, 16:56   #44
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Caradow, as you may be aware, the U of Hawaii did develop a test kit for the toxin some years ago. They were expensive (about 5$ per test), kinda complicated to use, and had a rather short shelf life. One of our bouts of "le gratte" (as the French in New Cal call it) was from a fish which I tested with a kit at the end of its use-by date. Tested ok, but was not ok, as measured by the itch and barf test.

That product disappeared from the marketplace thereafter, for reasons that were not explained. Could have been from inaccuracy issues, could have been economic... dunno. But with that background, it might be really hard to generate interest in re approaching the question.

Cheers,

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Old 11-05-2016, 17:09   #45
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Re: Ciguatera and Lion Fish

Jim-
Back when cig. first made the news among sailing mags (80's?) everyone got excited to hear that plain old Korectype, the white correction fluid, would turn purple on a toxic fish. Well...no, even without a public internet myths got around.
Catch fish, feed to lobsters. And if you're one of us many barbarians who don't eat the tomalley (lobster liver) then I guess you can filter out the cig. that way too?
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