Building the future by doing more together

REpulse- Responses of Daphnia magna exposed to chemical pulses and mixtures throughout generations
Coordinator - Susana Loureiro
Programme - PTDC/AAC-AMB/117178/2010
Execution dates - 2012-05-06 - 2015-05-05 (36 Months)
Funding Entity - Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia- FEDER- COMPETE
Funding for CESAM - 199296 €
Total Funding - 199296 €
Proponent Institution - Universidade de Aveiro

Water is an essential resource for human life, for the economy and for ecosystems. Pollution,over-exploitation of natural resources, damage to the aquatic ecosystems, climate and global change are challenging the sustainability of European water systems, prompting the need for the development of studies that will help to prevent impairments in water quality. Climate change and the growing occupation of vulnerable areas are dramatically increasing the risk of flood damage, especially in urban areas, worldwide. In natural ecosystems, organisms are frequently exposed to mixtures of chemicals/metabolites and non-chemical stressors for several generations. Recognizing this, the challenge is to estimate the interactive effects of single and combined chemical and non-chemical or natural stressors. This will be done by adopting a mechanistic-based approach to identify conserved cause and effect relationships in several generations of the freshwater cladoceran Daphnia magna. There is a need to understand complex exposure situations and to develop adequate tools for sound exposure assessment. Thus, one of the challenges that need to be tackled is how to assess multifunctional compounds, where interaction could occur synergistically or antagonistically for different dose levels and dose ratios. Considering the in the environment there are pulses of chemical compounds entering not simultaneously, another challenge is to understand how daphnids born from generations that were exposed to certain kind of stressors will respond to new inputs of different toxic compounds.

To address both of these challenges, here we will test the following hypothesis:
1) Do organisms whose progenitors were pre-exposed to contaminated scenarios respond the same way as their progenitors?
2) Will a pre-exposure to a stressor modify the response of future generations to mixture exposures, when the previous stressor was present?
3) Can daphnids recover from stressor exposures? And how?

Answering these questions will raise novel approaches to:
1) evaluate the adaptations of organisms to low doses of contaminants throughout generations
2) understand the responses of organisms that inhabit contaminated scenarios
3) preventing additional water toxicity and also
4) improving water quality and human health.

The generation approach in this project will provide clues about the tolerance flows to stressors among different generations and also how they recover after different periods of exposure.

Members on this project

Amadeu Soares
Ana Rita R. Silva
PhD student

Inês Domingues
Maria Pavlaki

grant holder
Sónia Mendo

CESAM Funding: