WP 3.2 - PhD

Emerging pollutant transformation and reactive oxygen species formation by oxygenase enzymes in different microbiomes

Duration of contract: 4 years 
Planned starting date: ASAP 
Place of work: University of Vienna

Main supervisor: Sarah Pati (Lab homepage)
Supervision team: Thilo Hofmann, Christine Moissl-Eichinger, Andreas Richter


Project description:

This subproject aims to investigate the transformation of emerging pollutants, such as tire additives, pharmaceuticals, and consumer products, by oxygenase enzymes in various microbiomes. Oxygenase enzymes play a crucial role in degrading pollutants in the environment by transforming a wide range of compounds into more polar and bioavailable products. However, under certain conditions, these enzymes exhibit poor efficiency in oxygen utilization, leading to the unintended production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). The PhD candidate in this project will perform exposure experiments with emerging pollutants and microbial communities from soil, freshwater, wastewater, and the human lung. In addition, methods will be developed to identify transformation products and quantify ROS. The outcomes of these experiments will determine whether a negative impact of (emerging) pollutants on environmental and human microbiomes can arise not only from the toxicity of the pollutants and their transformation products but also from the production of ROS by oxygenase enzymes. The ideal candidate has a background in environmental or analytical chemistry and a keen interest in studying organic pollutant transformation with high-resolution mass spectrometry and/or stable isotope techniques.



Projects and work packages

How to apply