PASSEDOBLE - An innovative approach to combine chemical and biological analysis of hydrophobic organic chemicals in the pore water of marine sediments

Project duration: 2016-2019

Funding: German Research Foundation (DFG; WI1410/10-1, Ho3330/10-1)

Principle investigator at the Goethe University, Department Evolutionary Ecology & Environmental Toxicology (E3T)
  • Prof. Dr. Henner Hollert
  • Thomas Benjamin Seiler

Project process
  • Nora Niehus
  • Kendra Majewski (MSc thesis)
  • Asya Bekerman (BSc thesis)

Cooperation partners
  • Prof. Dr. habil Gesine Witt (Hamburg University of Applied Sciences)

Assessing the bioavailability and effects of hydrophobic organic contaminant (HOC)-mixtures is a challenge in environmental sciences. We developed a combined passive sampling and dosing approach for direct transfer of in-situ sampled mixtures into small-scale bioassays. The principle of passive sampling and dosing is that dissolved HOCs diffuse into or from a polymer (e.g. PDMS) until the thermodynamic equilibrium is reached. We directly introduced passive samplers into a bioassay as a passive dosing phase to transfer the sampled mixture to the medium. As soon as the equilibrium is reached in the medium the native mixture is restored, equalling the in-situ sampled concentrations and composition. Thereby, the effects caused by the actual contamination can be investigated. This approach offers reliable and realistic exposure data for environmental management.


Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Henner Hollert

Goethe University Frankfurt
Biologicum, Campus Riedberg
Max-von-Laue-Str. 13
60438 Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Room: 3.319
Phone: +49 (0)69 798 42171
Fax: +49 (0)69 798 42161
Email: hollert(at)bio(dot)uni-frankfurt(dot)de

Former Affiliation: