Project 1: Mechanisms and biomarkers of metal olfactory injury in salmon

Project 1 investigators explored the mechanisms of chemical-mediated neurobehavioral injury to salmon.

These physiological impacts can occur at low chemical concentrations that occur in Superfund sites and can negatively impact salmon behaviors that are critical to survival, including homing, feeding and predator-prey avoidance. We integrated molecular, biochemical, physiological and behavioral approaches to understand the susceptibility of Pacific salmon to neurotoxic metals and pesticides.

We used zebrafish, including olfactory transgenics, to address mechanisms of olfactory injury that are relevant to wild salmon, including understanding the cellular processes that underlie recovery from olfactory injury following metal exposures. Genomics and microRNA technologies identified gene-environment interactions that occur during the process of salmon olfactory injury.

The project's goal was to develop mechanism-based biomarkers of neuropathic injury that can be used in monitoring the health of salmon and other fish species at Superfund sites and to effectively evaluate site remediation outcomes.

Click here for a two-page fact sheet about the project.

Principal Investigator: Evan Gallagher

Dr. Gallagher's bio