The present challenges facing our environment are often hidden threats that through long term or intermittent exposures reshape ecosystems often leading to decreased diversity and loss of important functions and services. Trying to understand the causes of an impaired ecosystem or the effects resulting from chronic exposure to a pollutant is not straight-forward and requires innovative approaches. Ecotoxicogenomics is an emerging field in ecotoxicology that applies genomic technologies such as DNA microarrays to understanding the effects of pollution at the molecular level.
My research focuses on applying genomics to better understand sub-lethal effects of environmental pollutants and uncover molecular biomarkers that can be used to detect environmental pollutants and understand their bioavailability. My focus areas include:
- Developing molecular biomarkers as detection tools for emerging contaminants including nanoparticles and use them to understand the bioavailability of nanoparticles in environmental matrices.
- Using genomics to understand the molecular pathways affected by environmental pollutants including metals, nanoparticles and pesticides and relate them to whole organism or population level effects.