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E-M:/ Algae toxins can spread through air

Scientists studying harmful algae in Muskegon County's Bear Lake recently made a surprising discovery: Boat traffic releases toxins in algae into the air, where they could be inhaled by unsuspecting people nearby.

Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control made the discovery while testing water samples in Bear Lake in 2006. Scientists tested the water and took blood samples from area residents to see if people who used boats or personal watercraft were absorbing toxic compounds, called microcystins, from blue-green algae that occasionally forms on the lake.

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