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Ecotoxicological research at DIT

Author - Maria Davoren, Colm O’Dowd and Sharon Ní Shúilleabháin

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Future perspectives

While it is clear that much innovative ecotoxicological research has been conducted at the centre, the environmental section of the RESC has yet to realise its full potential. The group has established a number of highly regarded research partners and collaborators including the Environmental Research Institute, Cork, Professor Brian Austin of Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh, Athlone Institute of Technology, the Electron Microscopy Unit, University College Dublin, and the Irish Marine Institute. The group also has access to a number of exciting new technologies including a confocal laser microscope and a cell observer system, as a result of the successful SFI (Science Foundation of Ireland) award last year. Exploitation of these resources and collaborations would allow the group to enhance their ecotoxicity-testing capabilities by developing a novel battery of in vitro bioassays.

In addition, the research expertise of the environmental group could be advantageous in teaching courses currently offered at DIT. Involvement with teaching in the college would be mutually beneficial, as it would contribute to providing final year students with practical knowledge and expertise in novel areas of research. It would in turn increase the supervisory experience of the centres’ researchers, as well as increasing the profile of the centre within the School of Science.

The current researchers in the environmental group envisage that through future collaborations and exploitation of the novel scientific technology available at the centre, the group could attract research funding and make a significant contribution to the progression of ecotoxicology in Ireland.


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