Position

Postdoctoral Researcher

Contact Details

Phone: +61(0)409 581 906
Fax:     +61(0)7 3274 9003
Postal:

Entox
39 Kessels Road
Coopers Plains, QLD 4108
Australia

Email: l.weijs@uq.edu.au

Background

Liesbeth studied Biology at the University of Antwerp in Belgium. She completed her PhD in Sciences (Biology) from the University of Antwerp in 2013, titled ‘Development of physiologically based pharmacokinetic models for the bioaccumulation of persistent organic pollutants in marine mammals’.
Liesbeth’s current research at Entox focusses on the kinetics and dynamics of several persistent contaminants in marine mammals. Her project has an analytical side as the levels of several chemicals need to be determined in a variety of tissues of these animals in order to gain knowledge about their kinetics. In addition, the project is partly an effect study as she will investigate several oxidative stress biomarkers in the tissues of marine mammals. The ultimate goal is to integrate this knowledge and provide a modelling approach that ultimately can be applied to assess and predict past, current and future contamination in marine mammal species. In terms of marine mammal species, Liesbeth is currently focussing on dugongs. However, as shown by her past publications, her interests are definitely not limited to one marine mammal species.


Research Interests

Focussing on understanding the kinetics and effects of chemicals in marine mammals. In particular:

  • Investigating several biomarkers of oxidative stress in marine mammals (dugongs) and unravelling of the biomarker pathways
  • Analysing persistent chemicals in different tissues of marine mammals
  • Modelling and combining all information about the kinetics of the chemicals, toxic effects of the chemicals and physiology of the animals

 

Selected Publications

  • Weijs, L., Dirtu, A.C., Das, K., Gheorghe, A., Reijnders, P.J.H., Neels, H., Blust, R. & Covaci, A., 2009. Interspecies differences for PCBs and PBDEs in marine top predators from the Southern North Sea: Part 1. Accumulation patterns in harbour seals and harbour porpoises. Environmental Pollution, 157, 437-444.
  • Weijs, L., Dirtu, A.C., Das, K., Gheorghe, A., Reijnders, P.J.H., Neels, H., Blust, R. & Covaci, A., 2009. Interspecies differences for PCBs and PBDEs in marine top predators from the Southern North Sea: Part 2. Biomagnification in harbour seals and harbour porpoises. Environmental Pollution, 157, 445-451.
  • Dorneles, P.R., Lailson-Brito, J., Dirtu, A.C., Weijs, L., Azevedo, A.F., Torres, J.P.M., Malm, O., Neels, H., Blust, R., Das, K. & Covaci, A., 2010. Anthropogenic and naturally-produced organobrominated compounds in marine mammals from Brazil. Environment International, 36, 60-67.
  • Weijs, L., Das, K., Siebert, U., van Elk, N., Jauniaux, T., Neels, H., Blust, R., Covaci, A., 2009. Concentrations of chlorinated and brominated contaminants and their metabolites in serum of harbour seals and harbour porpoises. Environment International, 35, 842-850.
  • Weijs, L., Losada, S., Das, K., Roosens, L., Reijnders, P.J.H., Neels, H., Blust, R. and Covaci, A., 2009. Biomagnification of MeO-PBDEs and PBDEs in harbour seals and harbour porpoises from the Southern North Sea. Environment International, 35, 893-899.
  • Pena-Abaurrea, M., Weijs, L., Ramos, L., Borghesi, N., Corsolina, S., Neels, H., Blust R., Covaci, A., 2009. Anthropogenic and naturally-produced organobrominated compounds in bluefin tuna from the Mediterranean Sea. Chemosphere, 76, 1477-1482.
  • Weijs, L., Das, K., Neels, H., Blust, R., Covaci, A, 2010. Occurrence of human-made and naturally-produced organohalogenated compounds in several tissues of Black Sea harbour porpoises. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 60, 725-731.
  • Weijs, L., Yang, R.S.H., Covaci, A., Das, K., Blust, R., 2010. Physiologically based pharmacokinetic models for lifetime exposure to PCB 153 in male and female harbour porpoises (Phocoena phocoena): Model development and validation. Environmental Science and Technology, 44, 7023-7030.
  • Weijs, L., van Elk, N., Das, K., Blust, R., Covaci, A., 2010. Persistent organic pollutants in harbour porpoise calves from 1990 until 2008: Young wildlife at risk? Science of the Total Environment, 409, 228-237.
  • Weijs, L., Covaci, A., Yang, R.S.H., Das, K., Blust, R., 2011. A non-invasive approach to study lifetime exposure and bioaccumulation of PCBs in protected marine mammals: PBPK modeling in harbour porpoises. Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology, 256, 136-145.
  • Weijs, L., Covaci, A., Yang, R.S.H., Das, K., Blust, R., 2012. Computational toxicology: physiologically based pharmacokinetic models (PBPK) for lifetime exposure and bioaccumulation of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in marine mammals. Environmental Pollution, 163, 134-141.
  • Shaw, S.D., Berger, M.L., Weijs, L., Covaci, A., 2012. Tissue-specific accumulation of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) including deca-BDE and hexabromocyclododecanes (HBCDs) in harbor seals from the northwest Atlantic. Environment International, 44, 1-6.
  • Vanden Berghe, M., Weijs, L., Habran, S., Das, K., Bugli C., Rees, J.F., Pomeroy, P., Covaci, A., Debier, C., 2012. Selective transfer of persistent organic pollutants and their metabolites in grey seals during lactation. Environment International, 46, 6-15.
  • Vanden Berghe, M., Weijs, L., Habran, S., Das, K., Bugli, C., Pillet, S., Rees, J.F., Pomeroy, P., Covaci, A., Debier, C., 2012. Effects of polychlorobiphenyls, polybromodiphenylethers, organochlorine pesticides and their metabolites on vitamin A status in lactating grey seals. Environmental Research, 120, 18-26.
  • Weijs L, Yang RSH, Das K, Blust R, Covaci A., 2013. Application of Bayesian population PBPK modeling and Markov chain Monte Carlo simulations to pesticide kinetics studies in protected marine mammals: DDT, DDE, DDD in harbour porpoises. Environmental Science & Technology, 47, 4365-4374.
  • Weijs L, Tibax D, Roach AC, Manning TM, Chapman JC, Edge K, Blust R, Covaci A, 2013. Assessing levels of halogenated organic compounds in mass-stranded long-finned pilot whales (Globicephala melas) from Australia. Science of the Total Environment, 461-462, 117-125.
  • Dupont A, Siebert U, Covaci A, Weijs L, Eppe G, Debier C, De Pauw-Gillet MC, Das K, 2013. Potential relationships between blood background contaminants and in vitro lymphoproliferative responses in free-ranging adult harbour seals (Phoca vitulina) from the North Sea. Aquatic Toxicology, 142-143, 210-220.
  • Weijs L, Roach AC, Yang RSH, McDougall R, Lyons M, Housand C, Tibax D, Manning TM, Chapman JC, Edge K, Covaci A, Blust R, 2014. Lifetime PCB 153 bioaccumulation and pharmacokinetics in pilot whales: Bayesian population PBPK modeling and Markov chain Monte Carlo simulations. Chemosphere, 94, 91-96.