Short Description: 

Bio Response Indicator Devices Gauging Environmental Stressors

The BRIDGES (Biological Response Indicator Devices Gauging Environmental Stressors) bioanalytical tool provides a quantitative measure of the toxicity of environmentally relevant contaminant mixtures. It pairs passive sampling with the embryonic zebrafish developmental toxicity model to connect environmental chemical exposures to biological effects. This tool responds to three fundamental needs in toxicology research: 1) determining bioavailability in order to assess potential exposure; 2) evaluating the toxicity of complex mixtures of contaminants in the environment [2]; and 3) directly connecting effective environmental sampling with toxicity evaluations. Furthermore, it allows for the determination of the toxicity of environmentally relevant mixtures, even when all of the components of the mixture are not identified  and can aid in the identification of bioactive chemicals.
The presence of chemicals in the environment is not necessarily indicative of bioavailability; chemicals can only be taken up by organisms and have a biological effect if they are bioavailable. Developing methods for effectively assessing exposure, and integrating these into risk assessment frameworks, has been identified as a priority for ecotoxicology and risk assessment. Although humans and other organisms are exposed to complex mixtures of contaminants, toxicity testing is most often limited to determining the effects of exposure to individual chemicals or classes of chemicals. Developing methods for effectively assessing exposure, and integrating these into risk assessment frameworks, has been identified as a priority for ecotoxicology  and risk assessment. Although humans and other organisms are exposed to complex mixtures of contaminants, toxicity testing is most often limited to determining the effects of exposure to individual chemicals or classes of chemicals. Models for predicting the effects of complex mixtures can be inadequate because they do not account for antagonistic and synergistic interactions between the components of the mixture. Additionally, environmental exposure assessment is carried out by measuring known pollutants in environmental matrices using analytical chemistry. Chemicals that have not been previously identified, such as unknown substances and breakdown products of known contaminants, can escape detection during chemical analysis; however, these unidentified components of the mixture may be toxicologically significant.