Isabella Jackson 


Growing up in the Lakes, my love of nature and the environment has been part of me since birth. I decided to pursue this passion by undertaking a degree in Marine Biology at the University of Liverpool, where I developed a deeper understanding of the natural world. From there I continued and completed a master’s degree, in which I investigated endocrine signaling in Cnidarians. Between my masters and the beginning of my PhD, I became a scientific intern at Marine Dynamics in Gansbaai, South Africa, where I learned more about the marine big 5 and developed my field techniques. For me I think the coolest animal is the Greenland Shark, but my favourite animal is my border collie Jack. 

The combined impacts of climate change induced environmental variation (salinity and temperature) and pollutant mixtures on stress response in a typical estuarine species (Mytilus sp)

PI and Institution:
Mark Hartl, Heriot-Watt University

PhD aim:
I am interested in how an ecologically important species (Mytilus sp.) will physiologically respond to multiple stressors interacting in estuarine systems. I have a particular interest in the rising prevalence of nanomaterials in the environment and what the effect this will have on species in tandem with a changing climate. I will also explore how the stress response of mussels differs between populations located in estuaries of varying pollution status, for example comparing mussels from the heavily industrialized Firth of Forth to the relatively pristine Dornoch Firth.  

PhD objectives:

  • To investigate the different contaminants which have accumulated within mussels from estuaries of varying pollution status and levels of industrialization. 
  • Run exposure tests on Mytilus edulis to observe how different stressors affect stress response by looking at bioindicators of oxidative stress and DNA damage. 
  • To explore how salinity and temperature affect the bioavailability of mussels to common contaminants. 
  • To create a multi-stressor experiment which explores the interactions of stressors driven by climate change and pollution. 

Contact details:
Email: [email protected]
LinkedIn: Ella Jackson