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Temperature, Pathogens and Chemicals: Stressors in a Changing World

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - TePaChe (Temperature, Pathogens and Chemicals: Stressors in a Changing World)

Reporting period: 2015-09-01 to 2017-08-31

Understanding relationships among multiple stressors – and the mechanisms underlying stressor interactions – will be crucial for applying ecological knowledge to solve future environmental problems. This GF project aims to address this problem by studying multiple stressors in a model system, filling knowledge gaps on the effects of simultaneous temperature, pollution and disease stress on animals. The proposed work combines theory and state-of-the-art methods from ecophysiology, ecotoxicology, immunology, evolutionary ecology and molecular biology, and has direct applications in environmental management and protection. The project uses insects as model organisms, since they drive important ecological processes and are under high pressure from anthropogenic influences. In the project, combinations of stressors are explored under controlled conditions in a comparative multi-species approach in the fly genus Drosophila.
During the first year of her outgoing phase, Dr. Kaunisto, established the Drosophila experimental system, trained herself for the new methodology, conducted pilot experiments, participated conferences, participated outreach activities, collected some publishable data and wrote and published the refereed theoretical research article. During the second year of her outgoing she has conducted several experiments, participate conferences and participated outreach activities. The remaining collected data will be in major part mostly analysed and published later this year or when Dr. Kaunisto has returned in Finland for her return phase.
The project has already has impact as the first publication (theoretical paper on multiple stressors; Current Opinion in Insect Science, 2016, 17: 55–61) has received several citations.
Laboratory work on Drosophila
Experimental Drosophila system