The project “PROTECTion against Endocrine Disruptors; detection, mixtures, health effects, risk assessment and communication (PROTECTED)” has been selected for funding through the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA).
-specifically within the “Innovative Training Networks” (ITN) program, an initiative of the European Commission (EC) to promote academic-industrial collaboration and the training and mobility of PhD students.
PROTECTED aims to develop specialized knowledge and protection capabilities against the so-called endocrine disruptors (EDs), which are chemical pollutants capable of altering our hormonal balance. The EDs and their mixtures are currently a health problem of the first order, with adverse effects such as obesity, cancer and infertility. They can also have a great impact on ecological systems, and for example be responsible for poor agricultural production. The EDs can be found in pesticides, plastics, cosmetics, paints, etc., and given their widespread presence there is a high risk of transfer to the food chain.
Dr Connolly is a reader in Toxin Food Safety and leads the MSCA ITN, PROTECTED ITN – an international research project exploring Endocrine Disruptors. Her coordination of this project involves 9 countries (UK, France, Spain, The Netherlands, Belgium, Chile, India, Canada) and 4 SMEs. This global network facilitates the innovative research and training of 17 early stage researchers in this worldwide issue. She is also a key partner of the Research Innovation Action (RIA), FREIA project (www.freiaproject.eu) – an international collaboration exploring the impact of endocrine disrupting chemicals on women’s fertility. This project provides dedicated, humanrelevant, test methods to identify EDCs that cause female reproductive toxicity.
More information is available on the project website: www.protected.eu.com