BOOSting excellence in environmental EPIgenetics

01 October 2022 → 30 September 2025
European funding: framework programme
Research disciplines
  • Natural sciences
    • Ecotoxicology
    • Epigenetics
    • Aquatic biology
(Epi)genetics ecotoxicology
Other information
Project description

The EPIBOOST project joins a widening partner and two internationally-leading partners that will steer a solid capacitation strategy towards tackling the challenges to the recently proposed uptake of epigenomics by Environmental Assessment frameworks. Capacitation activities cover for 5 specific objectives. The 1st is to optimize research protocols, enhancing the practical skills and research profile of the Widening partner for the development of excellent Science in the field of environmental epigenetics. This constitutes the nurturing stage, where we will be twinning (exchanges and training sessions) under an overall philosophy of learning- and advancing-by-doing allowed by a preparatory research project, which will build knowledge on the suitability of DNA methylation signatures as informative biomarkers of environmental contamination and effects. The 2nd objective is focused on the seeding of the talent that will sustain the European critical mass at the best world-class standards in the field, through the organization of several training events (advanced courses, summer schools and short courses in scientific meetings) targeting young EU researchers. The 3rd and 4th objectives regard the absolute need of a capacitated science management and administrative support to effectively grow world-class research in the field; these will be tackled through an immersive training programme focusing key core facilities (ethics & animal housing; sequencing), managers exchange for on-site training, professional training and real-time funding application preparation. The fifth addresses network growing and will be achieved through a systematic strategy for involving international flagship experts in capacitation activities and stakeholders in the project, which will strengthen the Consortium for new research and innovation ventures.  

Role of Ghent University
Ghent University takes up the role of advanced partner in the consortium. By training and exchange of expert researchers in environmental epigenetics with a focus on aquatic invertebrates, Ghent University will support the widening partner in this discipline. Ghent University will take up a leading role with regards to international training initiatives and courses and support the coordinator in developing a framework for the incorporation of epigenomics in environmental risk assessment.