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Transport, retention, and release of synthesized DNAs through microplastics affected-soils: mimicking bacteria behavior with regards to climate change and global warming

Projektbeschreibung

Bodenkontamination durch Mikroplastik

Die Verschmutzung der Weltmeere durch Mikroplastik ist hinreichend bekannt. Weniger Beachtung fanden bisher die Belastung von Böden, zugrunde liegende Prozesse und langfristige Umweltrisiken. Das EU-finanzierte Projekt TRAMPAS untersucht in diesem Zusammenhang, ob Mikroplastik den Wasserabstoßungseffekt (Hydrophobie) von Bodenporen auf der Erdoberfläche verstärkt und sich dadurch potenziell pathogene Mikroorganismen schneller ausbreiten können. Das Projekt betrachtet zwei gesellschaftlich relevante Probleme: die Kontamination durch Mikroplastik und die Präsenz pathogener bakterieller Erreger in der Umwelt. Zunächst wird bestimmt, wie Eigenschaften von Böden durch Klimastress und Mikroplastik verändert werden und Hydrophobie induziert wird, gefolgt von Auswaschungsexperimenten mit synthetischer DNA. Schließlich wird mithilfe mikrofluidischer Verfahren gemessen, wie dies die Bodenporen verändert und wie Mikroplastik (Plastisphäre) mikrobiell besiedelt wird.

Ziel

Microplastic pollution has received considerable attention for the marine environment, but hidden out of sight are microplastics in soil. In Europe alone, there are likely more microplastics in soil than in all the world’s oceans. Microplastics can adversely affect soils, but the underlying mechanisms and wider impacts are poorly understood. A significant impact could be increased hydrophobicity of the soil pore surface, which can increase the movement of potentially pathogenic microorganisms. I found that the concentration of microplastics and soil temperature increase the soil-water contact angle, a measure of hydrophobicity. This project will explore how microplastics influence soil through the development of hydrophobicity and the impacts to bacteria and virus transport and retention. It builds on my recent research that was the first to link the development of soil hydrophobicity with increased leaching of bacteria. Two challenges of societal importance are addressed: (1) microplastic pollution and (2) pathogen fate in the environment.
I will bring together a range of approaches, starting first with quantifying how climatic stresses and soil properties interact with microplastics to induce hydrophobicity. This will be followed by leaching experiments, where microbial retention and leaching will be tracked with a novel approach using synthesised DNA. Soil pore scale processes will be measured using microfluidics, where the spread and retention of microbes and water can be visualised directly under highly controlled conditions. Finally, I will study microplastic contaminated soil, exploring the formation of microbial colonised microplastics – the ‘plastisphere’.
Working with a strong multidisciplinary team I will gain excellent training in state-of-the-art analysis approaches. By using highly visual approaches in my research, such as microfluidics, I will be able to demonstrate its impact to a range of audiences, from the public, through policy, to scientists.

Koordinator

THE UNIVERSITY COURT OF THE UNIVERSITY OF ABERDEEN
Netto-EU-Beitrag
€ 224 933,76
Adresse
KING'S COLLEGE REGENT WALK
AB24 3FX ABERDEEN
Vereinigtes Königreich

Auf der Karte ansehen

Region
Scotland North Eastern Scotland Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire
Aktivitätstyp
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Links
Gesamtkosten
€ 224 933,76