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ENDOCRINE DISRUPTORS AND EMERGENT CONTAMINANTS

Principal Investigator:
Miguel Santos

The main aim of EDEC group is to improve environmental risk assessment of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) and emerging pollutants (EPs) in aquatic ecosystems, developing new methodologies to assess their effects. Addressing the impact of deep-sea mining and accidental marine spills are also current research aims. The group uses a multi-parametric approach that combines molecular biology, modeling and bioinformatics, ecological modeling, biochemical tools, and population relevant endpoints such as embryonic development bioassays, full life-cycle and multi and transgenerational assays. We aim to understand the mechanisms of toxicity of EDCs and EPs, single and in mixtures, and their impact in the aquatic ecosystems. We are particularly interested in understanding the transgenerational effects of EDECs and EPs and the underlying MOA. We use ecological modeling to project the ecological costs associated with chemical exposure. Linking adverse-effects endpoints of EDCs and EPs with the chemical’s mode of action (MOA) is transversal to all themes of the EDEC group. Our approach takes into consideration an evolutionary perspective thus focusing on the impact of EDCs and EPs across different phyla. Since the endocrinology and the genomic constitution of most invertebrates are poorly characterized, a parallel aim is to improve the understanding of invertebrate’s endocrinology and signaling pathways and link it with the impact of EDCs in key biological process. The group combines both field and laboratory studies

Publications Highlights

Ruivo R., Bellenchi G.C., Chen X., Zifarelli G., Sagné C., Debacker C., Pusch M., Supplisson S., Gasnier B. (2012). Mechanism of proton/substrate coupling in the heptahelical lysosomal transporter cystinosin. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A, 109(5): E210-217.

Castro L.F., Santos M.M. (2014). To bind or not to bind: the taxonomic scope of nuclear receptor mediated endocrine disruption in invertebrate phyla. Environmental Science and Technology, 48(10): 5361-5363.

Neuparth T., Martins C., de los Santos C.B., Costa M.H., Martins I., Costa P.M., Santos M.M. (2014). Hypocholesterolaemic pharmaceutical simvastatin disrupts reproduction and population growth of the amphipod Gammarus locusta at the ng/L range. Aquatic Toxicology, 155: 337-347.

Cunha I., Moreira S., Santos M.M. (2015). Review on hazardous and noxious substances (HNS) involved in marine spill incidents–an online database. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 285: 509-516.

Capitão A., Lyssimachou A., Castro L.F.C., Santos M.M. (2017). Obesogens in the aquatic environment: an evolutionary and toxicological perspective. Environment International, 106: 153-169.

Projects