The Purple Hinged Rock Scallop, a Promising Aquaculture Species with a Toxic Algal Problem

Investigators are examining rock scallops to help establish an approved, reliable assay for evaluating biotoxins and to improve growout methods for the purple hinged rock scallop.

Principal Investigator

Bobbi Hudson, Pacific Shellfish Institute

Co-Principal Investigators

Jerry Borchert, Washington Department of Health

Dan Cheney, Pacific Shellfish Institute

Jonathan Davis, Puget Sound Restoration Fund

Steve Morton, NOAA/National Ocean Service, Marine Biotoxins Program

Sandy Shumway, University of Connecticut

Brent Vadopalas, University of Washington, School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences


The native purple hinged rock scallop shows promise for aquaculture production, yet information on scallop biotoxin retention and detoxification is lacking. This is critical because toxins associated with potentially deadly paralytic shellfish poisoning are widely reported in bivalves along the North American west coast. Investigators will address regulatory and industry needs by improving understanding of biotoxin uptake and depuration in rock scallop species and by helping to establish approved National Shellfish Sanitation Program lab tests for detecting marine biotoxins. Research results are also anticipated to help improve understanding of optimal growout methods for purple hinged rocks scallops in Washington State.