Search for a biomarker for chronic stress in amphibians


StressChron Framework:

Project code083
Research areaContributing to a more sustainable and animal welfare minded food production
Research topicImproving our understanding of the impact of anthropogenic activities on
the health status of vertebrates in the wild
SpeciesFire salamander (Salamandra salamandra)



The research goal is to find a tissue in amphibians that incorporates glucocorticoids, in particular corticosterone, in time hereby providing a retrospective view on the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis making it the long-sought biomarker for chronic stress in amphibians. Hereto, an ultra-performance liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS/MS) method for quantification of a glucocorticoid profile, as seen in fire salamander (Salamandra salamandra), in various structures was developed in an EN ISO/IEC 17025 regulated environment and analytically validated according the requirements of the Commission Decision No. 2002/657/EC.



Keywords: wildlife, amphibian, biomarker, stress, UPLC-MS/MS, glucocorticoids

Funding: internal

Status: on-going


Ghent University (Aerts J, Martel A, Pasmans F)

Flanders Research Institute for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (Aerts J)



None at present