Monitoring of psychoactive drug contaminations and investigation of the induced biomolecular changes by mass spectrometry techniques

(NKFI PD 124161, 2017 - 2020, running project)
Coordinator or leader of the project: 
Maász Gábor
Coordinator or leader institution of the project: 
MTA ÖK
Responsible person at MTA ÖK: 
Short description: 

Currently used wastewater treatment technologies in Hungary are not or only partly suited for eliminating many, biologically active pollutants which allows them to enter the environment in their physiologically active state. Anthropogenic pollutants (e.g. psychoactive pharmaceutical agents) mean a significant disturbance for the aquatic ecosystems of shallow lakes such as the Lake Balaton since they influence the physiology of non-target invertebrate species (e.g. Lymnaea stagnalis and additionally, by contaminating the not well isolated water resources, they could affect human life. Most frequently, the disturbed processes are neural, neuronal and the molecular composition of single neurons are modified.

The aim of this project is to understand the neural processes that are altered by psychoactive agents. I plan to investigate the modification of biomolecular profiles that take place in identified neurons of the nervous system and the underlying neuronal processes.

In Hungary, consumption of these drugs is substantial in human drug therapy and an increasing trend can be observed from year to year since they are easily accessible to the public. However, there is limited knowledge available on the prolonged and delayed effects of these therapies. The studies and conclusions may contribute to the clarification and understanding the long-term neural effect of human drug usage as well as to estimating the social consequences.