Environmental Biotechnology

Agonostomus monticola as an indicator of metal pollution in Puerto Rico’s rivers by means of molecular strategies.

Antonio E. Carro Anzalotta, M.S.
Juan A. Negrón Berríos, Ph.D.
Interamerican University of Puerto Rico
Barranquitas Campus

This project is designed to assess the presence of pollutants in Puerto Rico’s streams using molecular methods in a common widely distributed native fish species (Agonostomus monticola). The aim of the study is to relate metalothionein metabolism in fish as a response to water pollution. For this purpose we will study the expression of metalothioneins in specimens of A. monticola using ELISA, PCR, and Antigen-Antibody techniques. A. monticola is a native species commonly found in most of Puerto Rico’s streams which makes this species a good indicator of environmental health. The fishes will be captured from wild populations and acclimated to laboratory conditions at Barranquitas Campus of the Interamerican University (Biotechnology Building). This project is expected to set the base for further molecular research using fishes as indicators in environmental issues.