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Lisa Hanslik


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: hanslik@stud.uni-heidelberg.de





Dissertation title:

Adverse effects of microplastic particles and associated trace contaminants in a simulated trophic network

Short description:

In recent years, microplastics with a diameter < 5 mm have been detected with increasing numbers in the marine and limnic environment. Due to poor biodegradation and their small size, these artificial particles can be ingested easily by aquatic organisms. A transport within the foodweb is thus a threat for the environmental health and ecological safety. Therefore, microplastic research has been growing attention in environmental pollution research.

The purpose of this collaborative study MIWA (Mikroplastik im Wasserkreislauf Probenahme, Probenbehandlung, Analytik, Vorkommen, Entfernung und Bewertung) is a comprehensive assessment of the toxicological and ecological relevance of microplastic particles as vectors for anthropogenic trace substances.

The thesis will focus on the toxicological characterization of the effects of microplastic particles and selected model contaminants adsorbed to these plastic particles in planktonic organisms such as daphnia (Daphnia magna), harlequin fly (Chironomus riparius), Artemia spec. larvae and in zebrafish (Danio rerio). The spectrum of methods includes classical fish and fish embryo toxicity testing and standard molecular biological and biochemical assays as well as advanced optical techniques (confocal laser scanning microscopy). Besides artificial food chain experiments with zooplankton and zebrafish, the uptake of microplastics and adsorbed trace contaminants and associated biological effects are investigated by means of additional toxicological endpoints.

This joint project is funded by the he German Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF).