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Gabriella Pantó
PhD Student

Research interests:

  • Microplastics presence in the benthic environment
  • Interaction between microplastics and macrofauna
  • Ingestion of microplastics by nematodes


Contact Info
BSc, Biology, University of Eastern Piedmont, Italy (2016)
MSc, Marine and Lacustrine Science and Management, VUB (2019)
Research Question
What is the distribution of Microplastics (MPs) in the shallow and deep sediments of the Atlantic Ocean and how do they interact with benthic organisms such as macro- and meiofauna?

My research is part of the multidisciplinary JPIOceans project HOTMIC, in which we investigate the distribution of MPs in the Atlantic Ocean and their impact on marine fauna. Specifically, my research focuses on the quantification and characterization of MPs from marine sediments, on the distribution of such particles in the benthic environment and their potential interaction with benthic organisms. I also conduct laboratory experiments to test the reciprocal influence of MPs and burrowing organisms in the sequestration of MPs to deeper sediment layers and the ingestion rates of MPs by nematodes, investigating possible differences in carbon assimilation in the presence of MPs.


Prof. Ann Vanreusel, Dr. Carl Van Colen, Prof. Ulrike Braekman