Developing biomarkers to characterise the impact of emerging environmental pollutants in freshwater Chironomids (Insecta, Diptera)

Lead Research Organisation: NERC Centre for Ecology and Hydrology
Department Name: Acreman

Abstract

The project will bring together Brazilian and UK expertise in ecotoxicology. The focus of the workplan is on characterising physiological and biomarker responses of temperate and tropical chironomid species to emerging chemical/particulate pollutants. The partnership has been formed between groups with a common interest in understanding the mechanisms of action and links to higher organisation level effects of chemicals using physiological and molecular tools. This innovations are developed with a view to improving the risk assessment and monitoring of emerging chemical pollutants in freshwater ecosystems, Initial exchanges have identified common research themes in developing stress response assays for invertebrate species. Initial contact by email and extended discussion has resulted in the development of a workplan focussed on this theme.

Planned Impact

Not required for this scheme.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description We have identified that aquatic insects are able to selective take up microplastics and that these have an effect on the intestinal microbiome leading to changes in stress status. TAdditionally we have shown that microplastics affect the bioavailability and uptake of PBDEs changing the bioaccumulation and as a result potential toxicity.
Exploitation Route Focus on understanding microplastic effects in freshwaters as is already the case for marine systems. Understanding of teh role of plastic in the fate and transport of key persistent organic pollutants.
Sectors Chemicals,Environment

 
Description We have identified the prevalence of microplastics in freshwater systems and how they can significantly alter the transport and uptake of persistent organic pollutants. We have also shown how both microplastics and PDBEs and their combination affect the gut microbome and how this can affect the health status of exposed organisms. This is important information for future chemical fate modelling and environmental management.
Sector Chemicals,Environment
 
Description Environment Agency Microplastics workshop (25/11/16) 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact The aim of the workshop is to raise awareness amongst researchers and regulators of the existing/planned research being undertaken in the freshwater environment in the UK in order to gain an understanding of the evidence gaps and research priorities. Opportunity to connect and interact with people and companies interested in the issue of microplastics, from a range of different areas. Potential for identification of collaborations/ funding opportunities.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Lahive, E, Horton, A. A., Palacio, A., Pereira, M. G., Disner, R. G., Navarro-Silva, M. A., Grassi, M. T. and Spurgeon, D. J. Ingestion of microplastics and PBDE by the freshwater invertebrates Chironomus sancticaroli and Lymnaea stagnalis and impacts on the gut microbiome. 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Platform presentations at SETAC/iEOS Joint Focussed Topic Meeting, Ghent, Belgium, 12-15 Sept 2016
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Lahive, E., Horton, A. A., Palacio, A., Newbold, L. Moeckel, C., Pereira, M. G., Grassi, M. T. and Spurgeon, D. J. Ingestion of microplastics by the freshwater invertebrate Chironomus sancticaroli: effects on PBDE bioaccumulation and the microbiome 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Platform presentations SETAC North America 37th Annual Meeting, Orlando, Florida, 6-10 Nov 2016.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Microplastics in wastewater workshop 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact This workshopwas was attended by CEH researcher Alice Horton. The meeting aimed to deliver a 'product' ao that the water companies' periodic review (PR19) planning can encompass studies on microplastics. Opportunity to connect and interact with people and companies interested in the issue of microplastics, from a range of different areas. Potential for identification of collaborations/ funding opportunities.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
 
Description Thames21 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Third sector organisations
Results and Impact Meeting to connect and interact with people and companies interested in the issue of microplastics from a very wide range of different standpoints and areas of interest. Potential collaborators/funders. Attendees include: academic researchers, charities (Thames21, Marine Conservation Society, Keep Britain Tidy, National Trust etc.), government (DEFRA), commercial (British Plastics Federation, water companies, environmental consultancies), additional (Port of London Authority)
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL http://www.thames21.org.uk/