Gwilym (Gwil) Price is in the final stages of finishing his PhD with CSIRO Environment and the University of Technology Sydney, where he studied the influences of water chemistry on zinc toxicity to microalgae in Australian freshwater ecosystems. Gwil’s research has contributed microalgal zinc toxicity datasets that he has used to develop new bioavailability models that will underpin Australia and New Zealand’s upcoming bioavailability-based zinc freshwater guidelines. Gwil has won the SETAC Australasia Postgraduate Research Publication Award in 2023 for his paper “Natural organic matter source, concentration, and pH influences the toxicity of zinc to a freshwater microalga”.
This study was the first to investigate the independent influence of natural dissolved organic matter (DOM) on chronic zinc toxicity to freshwater microalgae. The research found that some types of DOM actually increase zinc toxicity, rather than ameliorate toxicity through complexation, as is commonly observed. This work pushes back against the previous paradigm that DOM complexation will reduce toxicity as is described in numerous models used for toxicity prediction. A combination of ecotoxicological bioassays and measurements using the diffusive gradient in thin-films (DGT) technique were able to show that changes in zinc toxicity were unrelated to changes in zinc lability in solution. This study has also provided important data to enable the development of bioavailability models that are being used to derive bioavailability-based guidelines values for zinc in Australia and New Zealand.
Price, G.A. V., Stauber, J.L., Jolley, D.F., Koppel, D.J., Van Genderen, E.J., Ryan, A.C., Holland, A., 2023. Natural organic matter source, concentration, and pH influences the toxicity of zinc to a freshwater microalga. Environ. Pollut. 318, 120797. https://doi.org/10.1016/J.ENVPOL.2022.120797
While finalising his PhD part-time, Gwil is working as a scientist at the Australian Antarctic Division conducting research on risk assessment and remediation of human impacts at and near Australia’s Antarctic research stations. You can follow his work on Google Scholar and ResearchGate. You can contact Gwil via email on email@example.com to get free access to any of his published research.
Google Scholar: https://scholar.google.com.au/citations?user=R2IxhfAAAAAJ&hl=en
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