PBMS study uses bird cell lines to investigate cellular effects of pollutants.

In a recently published paper (1) Dr Kelly Heys (who completed her PhD in collaboration with the PBMS) examined the potential of a bird cell line rather than a more commonly used  human cell line for investigating the in vitro effects of exposure to environmental pollutants.  Kelly compared the response of both cell lines to brominated flame retardants and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).


Kelly’s found the two cell lines differed biochemically and this may influence their susceptibility to environmental contaminants. She concluded that the choice of cell type used in environmental toxicology experiments may be very important, especially when differentiating between potential impacts on birds or on mammals. 


The abstract of the paper can be viewed at:



(1) Heys, K. A., Shore, R. F., Pereira, M. G. and Martin, F. L. (2017), Vibrational biospectroscopy characterizes biochemical differences between cell types used for toxicological investigations and identifies alterations induced by environmental contaminants. Environ Toxicol Chem, 36: 3127–3137. doi:10.1002/etc.3890

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