Honorary Professor, Entox

Contact Details

Phone: +61 (0)7 3274 9009
Fax: +61 (0)7 3274 9003
39 Kessels Road
Coopers Plains
QLD 4108
Email: b.escher@uq.edu.au


Beate Escher is presently affiliated with the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ), Leipzig, Germany and is an honorary professor at the University of Queensland, adjunct professor in the Queensland Smart Water Research Faclility at Griffith University, lecturer at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich and senior adjunct researcher at the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Sciences (Eawag). She hel an ARC Future Fellowship from 2011-2014 and was the Deputy Director of Entox from 2009-2013.

She received her PhD in Environmental Chemistry from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich, ETHZ, Switzerland. In 2002 she completed her habilitation in Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zürich, ETHZ, Switzerland. She held a previous appointment as group leader at the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science, Eawag, in Dübendorf, Switzerland and was lecturer at ETHZ.

Beate Escher is an environmental toxicologist with a keen interest to closing the gap between exposure and effect assessment through common approaches linking bioavailability to internal exposure and effects via understanding and modelling of toxicokinetic and toxicodynamic processes.

Beate Escher has been working on developing scientifically sound assessment tools and methodologies for predictive risk assessment of chemicals prior to their introduction into the environment and retrospective risk assessment of (mixtures of) micropollutants and their transformation products present in the waste water and the environment, which are critical for the protection of the environment and human health. Escher’s expertise includes mode-of-action based effect assessment, and methods for initial hazard screening of organic micropollutants including pharmaceuticals, environmental transformation products, and mixtures. More practically oriented aspects include passive sampling and effect-based methods for water quality assessment, covering a wide range from characterization of source water like wastewater or stormwater, over process water (biological treatment, advanced oxidation processes, filtration processes) to drinking water.

Adjunct Affiliations:


Please access the following link:  http://www.researcherid.com/rid/C-7992-2009  to view Beate Escher's full list of publications.

Featured publications

Bioanalytical Tools in Water Quality Assessment
Author(s): Beate Escher and Frederic Leusch, with contributions by Heather Chapman and Anita Poulsen
IWA Publishing, ISBN: 9781843393689


  • Escher, B.I. and Fenner, K. (2011). Recent advances in the environmental risk assessment of transformation products. Environmental Science & Technology,  45(9): 3835-3847.
  • Escher, B. I., Hermens, J. L. M. (2002), "Modes of action in ecotoxicology: their role in body burdens, species sensitivity, QSARs, and mixture effects", Environ. Sci. Technol., 36, 4201-4217.
  • Escher, B. I., Hermens, J. L. M. (2004), "Internal exposure– linking bioavailability to effect", Environ. Sci. Technol. 38, 455A-462A.
  • Schwarzenbach, R., Escher, B., Fenner, K., Hofstetter, T., Johnson, C., Von Gunten, U., Wehrli, B. (2006), "The challenge of micropollutants in aquatic systems", Science, 313, 1072-1077.
  • Escher, B., Schwarzenbach, R. P. (2002), "Mechanistic studies on baseline toxicity and uncoupling as a basis for modeling internal lethal concentrations in aquatic organisms", Aquat. Sci., 64, 20-35.

Water Quality Assessment

  • Macova, M., Toze, S., Hodgers, L., Mueller, J.F., Bartkow, M.E. and Escher, B.I. (2011). Bioanalytical tools for the evaluation of organic micropollutants during sewage treatment, water recycling and drinking water generation. Water Research, 45: 4238-4247.
  • Escher, B.I., Bramaz, N. and Ort, C. (2009) JEM Spotlight: Monitoring the treatment efficiency of a full scale ozonation on a sewage treatment plant with a mode-of-action based test battery. J. Env. Monitor. 11, 1836 - 1846.
  • Escher, B. I., Bramaz, N., Mueller, J. F., Quayle, P., Rutishauser, S. (2008), "Toxic equivalent concentrations (TEQs) for baseline toxicity and specific modes of action as a tool to improve evaluation of ecotoxicity tests on environmental samples", J. Env. Monitor., 10, 612-621.

Miscellaneous Research Topics

  • Altenburger, R., Scholz, S., Schmitt-Jansen, S., Busch, W., Escher, B. I., (2012), " Mixture toxicity revisited from a toxicogenomic perspective ", Environ. Sci. Technol., 46, 2508-2522.
  • Escher, B. I., Schwarzenbach, R. P., Westall, J. W. C. (2000), "Evaluation of liposome-water partitioning of organic acids and bases: I. Development of sorption model", Environ. Sci. Technol., 34, 3954-3961.
  • Escher, B. I., Snozzi, M., Häberli, K., Schwarzenbach, R. P. (1997), "A new method for simultaneous quantification of the uncoupling and inhibitory activity of organic pollutants in energy transducing membranes." Environ. Toxicol. Chem., 16, 405-414.
  • Kwon, J.-H., Escher, B. I. (2008), "A modified parallel artificial membrane permeability assay for evaluating bioconcentration of highly hydrophobic chemicals in fish", Environ. Sci. Technol., 42, 1787-1793.
  • Lee, Y.; Escher, B. I.; von Gunten, U., (2008), Efficient Removal of Estrogenic Activity during Oxidative Treatment of Waters Containing Steroid Estrogens, Environ. Sci. Technol. 42, 6333-6339.
  • Spycher, S., Smejtek, P., Netzeva, T. I., Escher, B. I. (2008), "Towards a class-independent quantitative structure-activity relationship model for uncouplers of oxidative phosphorylation", Chem. Res. Toxicol., 21, 911-927.
  • Neuwoehner, J., Fenner, K. and Escher, B.I. (2009) “Physiological Modes of Action of Fluoxetine and its Human Metabolites in Algae.” Environ. Sci. Technol. 43, 6830-6837.