Natural Environment Research Council
NERC Fellowship project grant NE/M01939X/1 to develop the EPIC-map. Initial project to characterize up to 200 compounds and develop compuational approaches to understanding toxicity in zebrafish embryos.
Additional supporting grant to expand the selection of compounds to pharmaceuticals of environmental concern and to add multiple concentrations.
Additional support grant to add multiple concentrations and perform next-generation sequencing.
Develop a comprehensive chemical exposure data-set. To understand chemical-gene-outcome relationships.
Central to the EPIC-map is a standardized dataset representing environmentally relevant compounds selected by knowledge of their
- relevance to environmental monitoring
- breadth of chemical properties
- existing knowledge about effect as revealed by a zebrafish embryo toxicicty test (zFET)
The data is based on exposure to zebrafish embryos as it allows a number of phenotypic observations to be recorded that can aid in understanding the effects of compounds to fish in the environment.
Develop and apply tools to interrogate the underlying mechanisms of adversity. What makes the dose?
Adversity is a question of dose which has proven to be a challenge to understand on a molecular level. Developments such as the Adverse Outcome Pathway Framework has led to our ability to collate data systematically on the effects observed as a result of exposure. Developing these AOPs however is still cumbersum. EPIC-map will facilitate this development by supplying a set of tools that will help in developing AOPs, and guide researchers to identify new ways of how adversity is generated on a molecular level.
Understanding the relationship between chemical structure and gene expression. Merging (Q)SAR and OMICs.
A common question when developing new compounds is: Will my compound be safe? The EPIC-map will try to aid in this question by providing means of predicting the potential molecular response, and therefore the potential adversities, that this new structure might invoke.
These will be achieved by linking the efforts within (Q)SAR approaches, OMICs techniques and computational biology. Providing a system to test a new compounds effects