CHronic exposure scenarios driving enviRONmental rIsks of Chemicals (CHRONIC)

 

Short description: 

CHRONIC aims at delivering a cohort of highly-skilled and informed future research leaders trained in understanding and integrating, into risk-assessment practice, the long-term, low-dose chronic chemical exposure and their interactions with other environmental stressors. 

CHRONIC will include 13 PhD projects aimed at developing tools and approaches to identify relevant nonstandard modes of toxicity for low chronic chemical exposure and integrate these with environmental stressors. CHRONIC includes academic institutions, research centres, government institutions, SMEs, and an NGO all with extensive experience in education and training and a high state-of-the-art scientific and technical expertise and infrastructure.

 

Abstract from proposal submission:

CHRONIC aims at delivering a cohort of highly-skilled and informed future research leaders trained in understanding and integrating, into risk-assessment practice, the long-term, low-dose chronic chemical exposure and their interactions with other environmental stressors. CHRONIC research will support improved decision-making in risk assessment based on uncertain and potentially conflicting information, and in the development of scientifically-based monitoring strategies. The focus on low chronic exposure to contaminants in different environmental organisms (macrophytes, invertebrates, vertebrates) and end-of-line systems (freshwater, sediment, soil) allow for a training that is broader than that achieved from conventional narrower one-system concept generally included in PhD-programmes and in standard protection goals. Thus, CHRONIC represents a paradigm shift in ERA methods and practices needed to deal with current and future contaminant challenges.

CHRONIC will include 13 PhD projects aimed at developing tools and approaches to identify relevant nonstandard modes of toxicity for low chronic chemical exposure and integrate these with environmental stressors. CHRONIC includes academic institutions, research centres, government institutions, SMEs, and an NGO all with extensive experience in education and training and a high state-of-the-art scientific and technical expertise and infrastructure. The program will therefore lay the basis for an integrated approach to environmental risk assessment that includes non-standard yet ecologically relevant endpoints and low chronic exposure as key elements. CHRONIC include training-by-research, joint courses covering technical, scientific, ethical, and transferable skills. Students will also engage actively in communication to scientific and public communities and be enrolled in an ambitious intersectional networking exchange plan to increase employability and provide a broad perspective to their future career plan.

 

Overview of CHRONIC Early Stage Researchers focus, exposure system, and non standard test endpoints.
The last name of the p.i. in which the ESR is going to work is also mentioned.

 As illustrated in Figure, the ESR projects are interlinked and assess effects in relation to non-standard endpoints relating to 1) behaviour (neurotoxicity), immunotoxicity, and (epi)genetic toxicity, and 2) ecosystems covering aquatic sediment, water mesocosms, soil and terrestrial wildlife, with the major focus on sink ecosystems (sediment, soil), in which chemicals reside for extended times to provide chronic exposure scenarios. This allows ultimately for cross-system, cross-organism and cross-biological organisation (subcellular to individual to population level)