Link to USGS homepage  
Link to Ecology and Contaminants home page
Go to overview page
Go to people page
Go to studies & data page
Go to bibliography page
Go to links page

Cynthia L. Brown
Physical Scientist

M.S., San Jose State University, Geology

Research Interests
My area of research is on the availability and effects of inorganic trace elements in aquatic ecosystems. Current research is on the uptake and effects of trace elements on biotic organisms in San Francisco Bay, specifically the invasive clam Potamocorbula amurensis. This long-term, ongoing study has contributed to the understanding of processes that occur in complex estuaries. This work will continue with other organisms in the San Francisco Bay and Delta system. I am also interested in using a variety of techniques to study the effects of contaminants on aquatic organisms. These include physiological measurements (i.e. heart rate, respiration) and life cycle stage development.

Selected Publications
Brown, C.L., Luoma, S.N., Parchaso, F. and Thompson, J.K. 2004, Lessons Learned About Metals in the Estuary:
The Importance of Long-term Clam Accumulation Data, Pulse, Vol. 24, p. 38-45.

Brown, C.L., Parchaso, F., Thompson, J.K. and Luoma, S.N., 2003, Assessing Toxicant Effects in a Complex Estuary: A Case Study of Effects of Silver on Reproduction in the Bivalve, Potamocorbula amurensis, in San Francisco Bay, Human and Ecological Risk Assessment, Vol. 9, No. 1, p. 95-119.

Brown, C.L. and Luoma, S.N., 1995, Energy-related selenium and vanadium contamination in San Francisco Bay: Effects on biological resources?, in Carter, L.M.H., ed., Energy and the Environment - Application of Geosciences to Decision - Making. Program and short papers, Tenth Annual McKelvey Forum on Mineral and Energy Resources, February 13 - 16, 1995, Washington D.C., U.S. Geological Survey Circular 1108, p. 91-92.

Brown, C.L. and Luoma, S.N., 1995, Use of the euryhaline bivalve Potamocorbula amurensis as a biosentinel species to assess trace metal contamination in San Francisco Bay. Marine Ecology Progress Series. Vol. 124, No. 1-3, p. 129-142.

Teh, S.J., Clark, S.L., Brown, C.L., Luoma, S.N., and Hinton, D.E., 1999, Enzymatic and histopathologic biomarkers as indicators of contaminant exposure and effect in Asian clam (Potamocorbula amurensis). Biomarkers. Vol. 4, No. 6, p. 497-509.

Brown, C.L. and Luoma, S.N., 1999, Metal trends and effects in Potamocorbula amurensis in North San Francisco Bay. U.S. Geological Survey Toxic Substances Hydrology Program – Proceedings of the Technical Meeting, Charleston, South Carolina, March 8-12, 1999, Water-Resources Investigations Report 99-4018B, p. 17-21.

spacer image
Cindy Brown
Cindy Brown
Clams collected from Suisun Bay are sourted by size
Clam samples are extracted with acid. The extract is then analized by ICP.
Cindy collecting water samples in Frank's Tract.

U.S. Department of Interior, U.S. Geological Survey, Ecology and Contaminants Project
Last modified:
Privacy Statement           Disclaimer           Accessibility