Abstract of PhD Thesis

Advanced systems for biological assessment of toxicity of industrial chemicals

Alice Zitova, University College Cork (2010)

A new methodology for biological testing of industrial chemicals and environmental samples has been developed, which is based on the measurement of oxygen consumption of model organisms (microbial and mammalian cells and aquatic organisms) using phosphorescent oxygen-sensitive probes and detection on a fluorescent reader. Assays for neurotoxins and pesticides were developed which use coupled cholinesterase/choline oxidase system with acetylcholine and dissolved oxygen as substrates. These respirometric assays were validated with real samples. They provide good sensitivity, simplicity, high samples throughput and convenience; they are well suited for environmental monitoring and toxicity testing applications. A portable system for the analysis of VOC in sealed vials was also developed which uses solid state oxygen sensors and a benchtop reader.