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Marie Rønne Aggerbeck

Cand. Scient, Ph.d.-studerende

Marie Rønne Aggerbeck



The aim of my PhD project is to discover strains of bacteria able to degrade molecular endocrine disruptors. I will focus on discovering bacterial genetic operation mechanisms and attempt to assess their potential in biotechnological applications, specifically bioremediation on wastewater treatment. Particular focus will be on changes in genetic structure, as these strains are subjected to different concentrations of the pollutants we choose to work with. I hypothesize a genetic response to higher substance concentration, in the form of additional copies of plasmids, or changes in genetic expression of existing loci.

This project will target three types of wastewater micro-pollutants which are currently known endocrine disruptors, posing a risk to environmental and public health: Flame retardants, synthetic hormones, and antibiotics.

My experiments will involve screening of degradation potentials in wastewater samples, enrichment and isolation of degrader organisms through serial dilution into wastewater containing increasing pollutant concentrations and exposure effects on microbial communities and toxicological endpoint measurement of parent compounds and degradation products. Once suitable candidates have been isolated, their genomes will be sequenced and annotated, and compared to genomes of non-degraders, to determine which loci contribute to degradation pathways.

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