I am an oceanographer and ecotoxicologist working with environmental health since 2008. Instead of looking into single specific questions, the various aspects of the fate of chemicals and their potential effects is what captures my scientific attention. My goal was always to make use of the best tools that we have to solve the pressing issues that we face. This involves exposure of ecotoxicological models to different novel entities or the measurement of chemicals in the field and inside the organisms. I also work on the development of biomarkers, i.e. early warning biological responses to anthropogenic stressors.
Thus, the research I engage helps to better understand when and how heavy metals, pesticides, hydrocarbons, and microplastics can affect the physiology of a broad variety of organisms from marine microalgae and fishes to terrestrial crops.
Photo: Abel Machado inspecting roots of plants exposed to nanoplastics. Credits @ 3sat
I hope it will foster a human development that is grounded on solid knowledge about the resilience of the other forms of life that we share our planet with.
Microplastics in continental systems
Microplastic research is traditionally done for the sea. However, most of the plastic is produced, used, and discarded on land. Our work helps to set the basic concepts on the interaction of micro and nanoplastics and continental plants, animals, and microbes.
2013 - 2016
Freie Universität Berlin (Germany)
Queen Mary, University of London (UK) & University of Trento (Italy)
Ph.D. in River Science
Environmental fate of contaminants
Finding out what happens to pollutants once they reach the environment is a stimulating exercise. For that, we build conceptual models, measure contaminants in the fields, and run numerical simulations on the behavior of potential pollutants.
Rethinking ecotoxicological principles
The regulatory ecotoxicology was designed for chemical contaminants under strong assumptions. A big question is: are these dogmas applicable to the whole diversity of stressors that humans generate?
2010 - 2012
Federal University of Rio Grande (Brazil) & McMaster University (Canada)
MSc in Biological Oceanography
2006 - 2010
Federal University of Rio Grande (Brazil)