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Svenja Böhler


Centre for Organismal Studies

Abteilung Tierphysiologie / Entwicklungsbiologie

Im Neuenheimer Feld 504

Phone: +49-(0)6221/54-5664

Fax:: +49-(0)6221/54-6162

e-Mail: svenja.boehler@cos.uni-heidelberg.de


Dissertation title:

Development of an embryo toxicity and teratogenicity assay with the fathead minnow (Pimephales promelas) with special focus on normal development as an alternative testing method in ecotoxicology and as a substitute for human teratogenicity screening

Short description:

The aim of this PhD thesis is to establish the fathead minnow as an additional test species for the fish embryo acute toxicity test (OECD TG 236) not only for the assessment of acute toxicity, but also for teratogenicity. This should help to increase the acceptance of the fish embryo acute toxicity test mainly in the U.S., where the fathead minnow is the most used fish species in ecotoxicity testing.

In the first part of the project, the normal development of the fathead minnow embryo should be documented macro- and microscopically in form of an atlas. Based upon the atlas and the existing test guideline, the main focus of further studies lies on teratogenic effects in the fathead minnow embryo. For this purpose, an adapted and optimized test protocol of TG 236 for the fathead minnow embryo will be applied using two known teratogenic substances to conform practicability. Testing of several additional substances will create data for comparison with the zebrafish and different mammalian species. In addition, protocols for in vitro fertilization and dechorionation should be developed for further optimization.

This project is supported by the Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt.