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Bluefin Tuna

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FOOD
July 21, 2011 | By Adam Yamaguchi and Zach Slobig, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Scrawled on the white board hung behind the bar at Noshi Sushi in Los Angeles, the word " otoro " (fatty tuna) beckons seafood lovers. For the connoisseur, this is the main attraction, the filet mignon of sushi. Atop a small mound of rice, a heavily marbled slice of fish sits precariously — so oily that it's on the verge of falling apart. With one bite, the exquisite cut of bluefin will melt into oblivion. Bluefin tuna may not be a household name, but its taste and texture are famous — and increasingly infamous — among sushi aficionados across the world.
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SCIENCE
February 13, 2014 | By Louis Sahagun, This post has been updated, as indicated below.
Scientists have cracked a cellular biology mystery underlying a harmful effect oil spills have on fish: irregular heartbeats that can lead to cardiac arrest. In studying the effects of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill on bluefin tuna spawning in the Gulf of Mexico, the research team discovered that polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, or PAHs, block “signaling pathways” that allow potassium and calcium ions to flow in and out of cardiac cell membranes and sustain normal heart rates.
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OPINION
November 13, 2009
Europeans love to diss the selective environmentalism of Americans. And they have a point, given this nation's lax attitude about many toxic substances and its late arrival to the anti-global-warming club. But when it comes to wallet issues, Europe can be right up there in its unwillingness to save the planet. Some of the most heated opposition to ending the overfishing of Atlantic bluefin tuna has come from the continent, especially in the region along the Mediterranean with a big bluefin fishing industry.
SCIENCE
June 3, 2013 | By Eryn Brown
A team of scientists who have been tracking radiation in bluefin tuna since the 2011 tsunami that crippled the Fukushima Daichi power plant have a message for fearful American eaters: Stop worrying about the health effects of eating fish that carried the radiation from Japan to U.S. shores. "Fears regarding environmental radioactivity, often a legacy of Cold War activities and distrust of governmental and scientific authorities, have resulted in perception of risks by the public that are not commensurate with actual risks," wrote marine biogeochemist Nicholas Fisher of Stony Brook University in New York and his co-authors in Monday's online edition of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences .  Fisher and his colleagues analyzed measurements of radioactive cesium from Fukushima in bluefin tuna caught off the California coast to estimate the dose of radioactivity a person might receive from eating the tuna.
BUSINESS
January 7, 2013 | By Tiffany Hsu
Sensible business strategy wasn't really top of mind for Tokyo sushi chain Kiyomura K.K. when it shelled out $1.76 million this weekend for a single 489-pound bluefin tuna. The company dropped a record 155.4 million yen for the honor of buying the first fish up for auction at the famed Japanese seafood mart Tsukiji Market. The Saturday bid was nearly three times the 56.49 million yen high set by Kiyomura last year, according to market data . The chain snatched the record set in 2011 by a Hong Kong bidder.
BUSINESS
January 5, 2012 | By Tiffany Hsu
With $736,000, some people would buy a helicopter. Or a small Beverly Hills home. Or 150 Rolex watches. But with his six figures, Kiyoshi Kimura picked up a single frozen tuna. Specifically, a 593-pound bluefin sold during the first auction of the year at Japan's Tsukiji fish market, which will go to feed customers at Kimura's Tokyo-based Sushi-Zanmai sushi chain, according to the Associated Press. The price busted past Tsukiji's record of $421,000, paid last year by a Hong Kong bidder.
SCIENCE
May 28, 2012 | By Eryn Brown, Los Angeles Times / for the Science Now blog
Pacific bluefin tuna carried radioactivity from Japan's 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster all the way across the ocean to the shores of California, scientists reported Monday. They didn't bring much - the levels were far lower than, for instance, levels of naturally occurring potassium 40 that have existed in the ocean for centuries - but the radioactivity was enough to survive the fishes' migration east to North America from the Western Pacific, which they undertake when they're around a year old, said doctoral student Daniel Madigan, who studies the migration patterns of tuna at Stanford University.
WORLD
July 5, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
Bluefin tuna risk being fished to extinction in the Northeast Atlantic and Mediterranean Sea, a conservation group warned, appealing for an immediate ban on catches. The World Wide Fund for Nature said catches were running at 40% above the legal quota. It said boats from Libya, Turkey and European Union nations led by France were responsible for most of the illegal and unregulated catches.
SPORTS
August 16, 1989 | Pete Thomas
Albacore may not be cooperating fully with fishermen aboard San Diego's huge fleet of sportfishers, but the bite is improving and schools of large bluefin tuna have moved into waters reachable by the overnight boats. Two weeks ago, the Pronto brought in the season's first bigeye tuna--three fish at 85 pounds apiece--and since then the bluefins have become the primary attraction, with many in the 40- to 50-pound class.
SPORTS
July 28, 1988 | DAN STANTON
The best is yet to come. There's a variety of fish to be caught. With albacore failing to show, anglers are getting excited fishing Catalina with the chance that a bluefin tuna run could be in the offing. All day boats fishing the island report in the last several days that the blues have been feeding but mostly refuse a baited hook. The First String from 22nd Street Landing was the first boat to locate the blues, and had 11 hookups early Monday morning but landed only one.
SCIENCE
May 8, 2013 | By Eryn Brown
Marine biologist Dan Madigan stood on a dock in San Diego and considered some freshly caught Pacific bluefin tuna. The fish had managed to swim 5,000 miles from their spawning grounds near Japan to California's shores, only to end up the catch of local fishermen. It was August 2011, five months since a magnitude 9 earthquake and tsunami had struck in Japan, crippling the Fukushima Daiichi power plant. Madigan couldn't stop thinking about pictures he'd seen on TV of Japanese emergency crews dumping radioactive water from the failing reactors into the Pacific Ocean.
BUSINESS
January 7, 2013 | By Tiffany Hsu
Sensible business strategy wasn't really top of mind for Tokyo sushi chain Kiyomura K.K. when it shelled out $1.76 million this weekend for a single 489-pound bluefin tuna. The company dropped a record 155.4 million yen for the honor of buying the first fish up for auction at the famed Japanese seafood mart Tsukiji Market. The Saturday bid was nearly three times the 56.49 million yen high set by Kiyomura last year, according to market data . The chain snatched the record set in 2011 by a Hong Kong bidder.
BUSINESS
July 9, 2012 | By Tiffany Hsu
By 2018, the salmon fillet or sushi on your plate more likely than not will have originated from a fish farm rather than from the wild, according to the United Nations' food agency. Output from fisheries and aquaculture is expected to soar 33% over the next decade, reaching 172 million tons in 2021, according to a report from the Food and Agriculture Organisation. The group refers to crustaceans, amphibians, aquatic reptiles, sea urchins, jellyfish and more as fish. That's a 12% increase from the 154 million tons produced last year.
BUSINESS
June 25, 2012 | By Tiffany Hsu
For the first time since Japan's nuclear disaster last year, seafood caught off the Fukushima coastline is being sold in local markets to test customer demand. On Monday, two types of octopus and one variety of marine snail deemed clear of radioactive cesium were on sale, often at deep discounts, according to the Fukushima Prefecture fishing cooperative. Contamination worries still persist concerning fish, which aren't yet ready for consumption, according to Japanese media reports.
SCIENCE
May 28, 2012 | By Eryn Brown, Los Angeles Times / for the Science Now blog
Pacific bluefin tuna carried radioactivity from Japan's 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster all the way across the ocean to the shores of California, scientists reported Monday. They didn't bring much - the levels were far lower than, for instance, levels of naturally occurring potassium 40 that have existed in the ocean for centuries - but the radioactivity was enough to survive the fishes' migration east to North America from the Western Pacific, which they undertake when they're around a year old, said doctoral student Daniel Madigan, who studies the migration patterns of tuna at Stanford University.
BUSINESS
January 5, 2012 | By Tiffany Hsu
With $736,000, some people would buy a helicopter. Or a small Beverly Hills home. Or 150 Rolex watches. But with his six figures, Kiyoshi Kimura picked up a single frozen tuna. Specifically, a 593-pound bluefin sold during the first auction of the year at Japan's Tsukiji fish market, which will go to feed customers at Kimura's Tokyo-based Sushi-Zanmai sushi chain, according to the Associated Press. The price busted past Tsukiji's record of $421,000, paid last year by a Hong Kong bidder.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 10, 1998 | MARY CURTIUS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
In her cluttered office overlooking Monterey Bay, Barbara Block is poring over computer printouts that are revolutionizing what the world knows about one of the most sought-after, mysterious animals on Earth--the giant Atlantic bluefin tuna. "This is my favorite biological activity--getting inside the heads of these fish," said Block, a Stanford University marine biologist who directs the Tuna Research and Conservation Center at Monterey Bay Aquarium.
SCIENCE
February 13, 2014 | By Louis Sahagun, This post has been updated, as indicated below.
Scientists have cracked a cellular biology mystery underlying a harmful effect oil spills have on fish: irregular heartbeats that can lead to cardiac arrest. In studying the effects of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill on bluefin tuna spawning in the Gulf of Mexico, the research team discovered that polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, or PAHs, block “signaling pathways” that allow potassium and calcium ions to flow in and out of cardiac cell membranes and sustain normal heart rates.
FOOD
July 21, 2011 | By Adam Yamaguchi and Zach Slobig, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Scrawled on the white board hung behind the bar at Noshi Sushi in Los Angeles, the word " otoro " (fatty tuna) beckons seafood lovers. For the connoisseur, this is the main attraction, the filet mignon of sushi. Atop a small mound of rice, a heavily marbled slice of fish sits precariously — so oily that it's on the verge of falling apart. With one bite, the exquisite cut of bluefin will melt into oblivion. Bluefin tuna may not be a household name, but its taste and texture are famous — and increasingly infamous — among sushi aficionados across the world.
OPINION
November 13, 2009
Europeans love to diss the selective environmentalism of Americans. And they have a point, given this nation's lax attitude about many toxic substances and its late arrival to the anti-global-warming club. But when it comes to wallet issues, Europe can be right up there in its unwillingness to save the planet. Some of the most heated opposition to ending the overfishing of Atlantic bluefin tuna has come from the continent, especially in the region along the Mediterranean with a big bluefin fishing industry.
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