CENR Postdoctoral Fellow, Dominic E. Ponton, Awarded ASPIRE Grant
CENR postdoctoral fellow Dominic E. Ponton has been awarded an ASPIRE I, track II
from the USC Office of the Vice President for Research. Dr. Ponton has been affiliated
with the CENR since January 2015 and is working in collaboration with Dr. Marie-Noele
Croteau (USGS, Menlo Park, California), on three-layered silver (Ag) nanoparticles
(Ag@gold@Ag) synthesized by the CENR. His postdoctoral project consists of characterizing
the binding and uptake of these nanoparticles by a unicellular green alga (Chlamydomonas
reinhardtii) and the influence of the alga on the nanoparticle behavior in water.
He used this green alga as contaminated food for the grazing snail Lymnaea stagnalis
and characterized this trophic transfer. With the $5,000 awarded, Dominic’s mission
is to upgrade the CENR facilities to perform high quality ecotoxicological studies
with aquatic organisms and also present his results at the SETAC international conference
in November 2016, in Orlando (FL). This innovative project will contribute to new
graduate activities and help to obtain external funding.