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Marine Biodiversity and Biotechnology

From the shoreline to the deep ocean, tackling issues from pure ecology
and physiology to aquaculture, marine spatial planning and conservation.

Danai Patsiou

Danai's project: Ecotoxicity of engineered nanomaterials in zebrafish

Engineered nanomaterials (ENMs) are widely used in a variety of products that include electronics, medicine, and environmental applications. As a result of their small size, ENMs have many unique and useful properties. However, use of NPs in products is dependent on ensuring that negative environmental effects (e.g., unintended toxicity in organisms) are minimized. After use, NPs may enter the environment via wastewater and lead to exposure and potential toxicity in aquatic organisms. Investigating the toxicity of NPs in the aqueous phase is dependent on establishing the physicochemical properties of the NPs and relating these properties to toxicological responses.

The initial objective of this study is to develop the methods for measurement of NP size, size distribution, and charge in the aqueous phase; and to demonstrate the reproducibility and inherent variation in these measurements. In addition the research will involve toxicity and environmental impact assessments of NPs on zebrafish, Danio rerio. DNA damage and gene expression will be investigated.


EU FP7 Future Nano Needs


Ted Henry (CMBB, Heriot-Watt University)

Teresa Fernandes (CMBB, Heriot-Watt University)



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School of Life Sciences, Heriot-Watt University, Riccarton Campus, Edinburgh, EH14 4AS

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