Adria A. Elskus, PhD

U.S.G.S. Research Fishery Biologist - Aquatic Toxicology
Associate Professor of Biological Sciences
Cooperating Associate Professor of Marine Sciences

U.S. Geological Survey, Maine Field Office
Department of Biological Sciences
5751 Murray Hall
University of Maine
Orono, ME 04469-5751
Tel 207/581-2579
Fax 207/581-2537

Research Interests: The fate and effects of contaminants in aquatic ecosystems, particularly effects on reproduction, adaptation to environmental contaminants, and the effects of multiple stressors on survival, reproduction and physiological processes in fish.


1992 Ph.D. Biology, Boston University Marine Program, Woods Hole, MA
1985 M.S. Biological Oceanography, Graduate School of Oceanography, University of Rhode Island, Narragansett, RI (advisors: A. Sastry, URI/GSO; J.J. Stegeman, WHOI)
1978 A.B. Biochemistry, magna cum laude, Mt. Holyoke College, So. Hadley, MA

Research Training

1992-94 NIH Postdoctoral Fellow, Reproductive Endocrinology, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL (mentor: Neena B. Schwartz)
1978 (sum) Vertebrate Immunology Intern, The Jackson Lab, Bar Harbor, ME
1977 (sum) Invertebrate Toxicology Intern, Chesapeake Biol. Lab, Solomons Is., MD
1976 (sum) Vertebrate Toxicology Intern, Chesapeake Biol. Lab, Solomons Is., MD

Professional Positions

2004-present Fishery Research Biologist/Toxicologist, USGS, Maine Field Office of the S.O. Conte Anadromous Fish Research Laboratory; Assoc Prof, Biological Sciences, Cooperating Assoc. Prof., School of Marine Sciences, University of Maine, Orono, ME
2004-present Adjunct Professor, Dept of Biology, Adjunct Professor Graduate Center for Toxicology, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY
1994-2003 Adjunct Research Assistant Professor, Marine Sciences Research Center, State University of New York, Stony Brook, NY
1999-2004 Assistant Professor Dept of Biological Sciences, University of Kentucky
1997 (Aug) Visiting Professor, F.T. Stone Laboratory, The Ohio State University, Put-in-Bay, OH
1982-86 Organic Chemist, U.S. Environ. Protection Agency, Narragansett, RI
1980-82 Invertebrate Toxicologist, U.S. EPA, Narragansett, RI
1978-80 Environmental Consultant/Chemist, Energy Resources Co. (ERCO), Cambridge, MA

Technical Expertise


USGS 104b Program. 2007/8. 'Do Multiple Stressor Conditions in Maine Rivers Affect Fish Health?' R. Van Beneden (PI), A. A. Elskus, F. Drummond, L.B. Perkins. $74,736. Pending.

USGS 104b Program. 2007/8. 'Do wood frog (Rana sylvatica) embryos and larvae in vernal pools in Acadia National Park, Maine, bioaccumulate mercury?' Aram Calhoun, (PI), Cynthia S. Loftin, Sarah Nelson, Adria Elskus. $62,729. pending.

Surface Water Ambient Toxics (SWAT) Program, Maine Department of Environmental Protection. 2006/7. 'A Pilot Study to Assess the Sublethal Effects on Fish of Current-use and Proposed-use Maine Blueberry Pesticides' A.A. Elskus (PI). $4,970.

Maine Outdoor Heritage Foundation. 2005/6. ‘Examination of mercury contamination in northern two-lined salamanders and sculpin inhabiting watersheds in coastal Maine.’ C. Loftin (PI), J. Zydlewski, A.A. Elskus. $20,249.

USGS 104b Program. 2005/6. ‘A pilot study to evaluate the potential for river water toxicity to increase following dam removal’. G. Mayer (PI), A.A. Elskus, R. Van Beneden, C. Kim, L. LeBlanc, L.B. Perkins. $96,041.

US EPA STAR. 2000-STAR-K2. 2001-2006. ‘Polyhalogenated diphenyl ethers: an emerging environmental threat?’ G. Ludewig (PI), B. Palmer, A.A. Elskus. $372,255.

USFWS Region 5. FY06 Environmental Contaminants Program Off-Refuge Investigations Sub-Activity. 2005/6. 'Evaluating contaminant body burdens and biomarkers in brown trout and brook trout in two Maine rivers as surrogates for Atlantic salmon'. S. Mierzykowski, A. A. Elskus, J. Trial. $28,000.

USFWS Region 5. FY07 Environmental Contaminants Program Off-Refuge Investigations Sub-Activity. 'Assessment of the Effects of Current-use and Proposed-use Blueberry Pesticides on Performance Fitness of Atlantic Salmon.’ A.A. Elskus, S. Mierzykowski $48,181. Pending.

USFWS Region 5. FY07 Environmental Contaminants Program Off-Refuge Investigations Sub-Activity. ‘Contaminant Assessment of Trout from Four Atlantic Salmon DPS Rivers’. S. Mierzykowski, J. Trial, A. A. Elskus. $35,400. Pending

USGS 104b Program, Kentucky Water Resources & Research Institute. 2004/5. 'Linking chemical tolerance to reproductive resilience: CYP1A1 as a metric for predicting fish species distributions in chemically impacted habitats.' A.A. Elskus (PI) $20,267.

US EPA Science to Achieve Results (STAR). 2000-STAR-Q1. 2001-2004. ‘Models and mechanisms: understanding multiple stressor effects on an amphibian population’. B. Palmer (PI), A.A. Elskus, A. Sih, P. Crowley, B. Shepherd. $522,832.

NIH Predoctoral Fellowship Award for Minority Students 2000­2004. ‘Molecular mechanisms of resistance in vertebrates’. Xabier Arzuaga, PI; AA Elskus, sponsor. $100,540

F31 ES05942-01. USGS 104b Program. Kentucky Water Resources & Research Institute. 2003/4. ‘Biochemical and hormonal effects of incomplete site remediation: evaluating resident fish species’. A.A. Elskus (PI). $18,636.

USGS 104b Program. Kentucky Water Resources & Research Institute. 2002. ‘Evaluating site remediation success using a sensitive biochemical indicator in fish’. $17,395.5.

UK Research Committee Grant 2002/3. A.A. Elskus 'Hormone-pollutant interactions' $4,899.

NY Sea Grant. 2000-2002 Estrogenicity of Municipal Sewage Treatment Plant Effluents: Vitellogenic and Estrogen Receptor Responses in Striped Bass; A.A. Elskus Co-PI, $239,151.

Hudson River Foundation Grant, 1999-2001 Sediment Toxicity Testing with Ampelisca abdita: Evaluating the Identity of Responsible Organic Contaminants using Critical Body Residue and Reverse-TIE; A.A. Elskus Co-PI. $208,424.

Hudson River Foundation Grant, 1997-99. Compound Class Specific Evaluation of Toxicity of the Bioavailable Fraction of Hydrophobic Organic Contaminants from Sediments in the Hudson-Raritan Estuary. A.E. McElroy and A.A. Elskus. $181,282.

Hudson River Foundation Grant, 1994-96. Reproductive Effects of Contaminant Mixtures on Resident Fish in the Lower Hudson River Estuary and Newark Bay. A.A. Elskus Co-PI $181,297.

National Research Service Award/NICHD, 1992-94 ‘Gonadotropin Releasing Hormone Control of Luteinizing Hormone Response to Gonadectomy.’ A.A. Elskus (PI).

Sigma Xi Grant, 1983. Use of the MFO system to monitor pollutant stress in Mytilus edulis populations in Narragansett Bay. Graduate School of Oceanography, University of Rhode Island. A.A. Elskus (PI) $1000.

Elskus' Biography
Elskus' Publications