Aquatic Research Consortium


University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Coast Research Laboratory

Comparative Toxicogenomics Laboratory

The aquatic toxicology program at USM/GCRL is supported by a biochemistry/molecular biology laboratory (1000 square feet), and gene array technology laboratory (1500 square feet). The biochemistry/molecular biology laboratory has a Beckman Gold HPLC with a photodiode array detector and a Jasco F-920 Fluorescence Detector, Beckman DU 640 UV/VIS, Hitachi F-2000 Fluorescence and Perkin Elmer Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer, Beckman TL-100 Optima ultracentrifuge, Beckman LS 6500 Scintillation Counter, BioRad FluorS MultiImager, BioRad microplate reader. All standard equipment necessary to support the research is on hand (glass stills, nanopure water purification system, autoclaves, pH meters, balances, refrigerated centrifuges, microfuges, PAA and agarose gel electrophoresis equipment, trans-blot apparatus, power supplies, water baths, PCR thermocyclers, UV transilluminators, Laminar Flowhood etc).

The Gene Array Technology Laboratory is equipped with a Beckman Coulter CEQ 8000 Genetic Analysis System; Beckman Proteome Lab PF2D System; Beckman Biomek 3000 Work Station; BioRad iCycler iQ Real-Time PCR Detection System, BioRad VersArray Chip Writer Compact System, BioRad VersArray Chip Reader, Agilent Technologies 2100 Bioanalyzer, NanoDrop ND-1000 Spectrophotometer; and Nikon Stereoscope and compound microscope with digital camera. Standard equipment including Rainin multi-channel pipettors, water baths, air incubators, dry block incubators, an Eppendorf vacufuge and refrigerated microcentrifuges are on hand for research support.

Shoemaker Toxicology Laboratory

The aquatic toxicology research program at USM/GCRL, under the direction of Dr. Brouwer, utilizes the W.M. Shoemaker Toxicology Laboratory, a 6,000 square foot facility devoted entirely to animal husbandry and exposure activities. Culture activities are physically separated from exposure activities, and the facility is equipped to produce and maintain saltwater and freshwater fish and invertebrates. Exposure capabilities include all variations of acute and chronic static and flow-through approaches. The facility contains three isolated exposure laboratories, each with single-pass air control, independent lighting, and capability of bench-level effluent treatment and multiple discharge options. All exposure chambers are equipped with water baths to maintain temperature within prescribed ranges and with lighting systems to provide appropriate photoperiod and to mimic dusk and dawn. Our studies employ state-of-the-art flow-through exposure technologies that allow us to have a precise level of control over exposure conditions, provide low variability in concentrations of waterborne test compound, and offer a high level of worker and environmental safety. This system continually renews diluent water and toxicant, maintaining constant concentrations of test compounds while minimizing the buildup of waste and metabolic products by the organisms. The toxicology laboratory is equipped with generators capable of powering electrical circuits for aerators and other critical equipment.

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