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Integrated effects of xenoestrogens and chytrid infection on the microbiome of the Brazilian cururu toad (Rhinella icterica)

Grant number: 19/04462-5
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Post-doctor
Effective date (Start): September 01, 2019
Effective date (End): November 30, 2019
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology
Principal Investigator:Luis Felipe de Toledo Ramos Pereira
Grantee:Raquel Fernanda Salla Jacob
Supervisor: Douglas C Woodhams
Host Institution: Instituto de Biologia (IB). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Research place: University of Massachusetts Boston (UMass Boston), United States  
Associated to the scholarship:17/18040-0 - Integrated effects of xenoestrogens and chytrid infection on the morphological physiology of males and females of the Cururu Toad, BP.PD


Amphibians are frequently impacted by several stressors contributing to population declines. The xenoestrogens dumped into the effluents can act as endocrine disruptors, affecting several physiological functions of amphibians. Once exposed to these contaminants, amphibians may become more susceptible to infectious diseases such as chytridiomycosis. In the aquatic environment, all of these factors can occur concomitantly, and an interaction between them can lead to even more severe effects. However, to date there are no studies evaluating the synergistic effects of 17±-ethynyloestradiol (EE2) and chytridiomycosis, nor are there comparisons between sexes in this sense. The microbiome may mediate the effects of stressors and disease, thus here we aim to characterize the microbiome of male and female Rhinella icterica, and to examine the effects of exposure to EE2 and the chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis. Research targets will be achieved by analyzing the microbiome at the University of Massachusetts Boston, under the supervision of Dr. Douglas Woodhams. This pioneering study may have global implications and is set to reveal a complex web of interactions between pathogens, environmental contaminants and sexual gender in anurans.

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