Prof. Teresa Fernandes


Professor of Environmental Science

School of Life Sciences


Research profile

Roles and responsibilities

Teresa's teaching Interests are:

  • Population and Community Ecology
  • Ecological Assessment
  • Environmental Toxicology
  • Pollution
  • Marine Ecology
  • Aquatic and Coastal Conservation
  • Aquaculture and Fisheries Management
  • Scientific and Numerical Methods
  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Environmental Management

Current Supervision of PhD/MPhil Projects:

Jon Mullinger. The effects of nanoparticles on sediment dwelling organisms. Sponsored by Unilever.

Lauren McWhinnie. The spatial management of marine coastal activities, with a focus on aquaculture.Sponsored by Marine Science Scotland.

Kai Paul. NanoBEE project: Exposure and bioavailability of engineered nanomaterials to environmental model organisms. Sponsored by NERC

Simon Little. Managing risks of Nanomaterials to sediment-dwelling organisms. Sponsored by EC FP7 project MARINA. 

Jonathan Currie. Managing Risks of Nanomaterials to algae.Sponsored by EC FP7 project MARINA. 

Samutrtai Pawitrabhorn. Ecotoxicity of engineered nanomaterials and the pathway of toxic effects in an environmental model, Caenorhabditis elegans. Sponsored by the Thai Government.

Corin Liddle. Behaviour and bioavailability of engineered nanomaterials in static and flowing waters. Sponsored by James Watt studentship.

Florian Mallevre. Assessing ecotoxicity effects of nanomaterials using planktonic and biofilm based bacterial biosensors. Sponsored by James Watt studentship.

Hassien Alnashiri. The Ecotoxicology of Copper Nanoparticles in Marine Mussels. Sponsored by the Saudi Government.

Teresa Fernandes has conducted numerous PhD/MPhil vivas at Universities throughout Europe.


UK research students successfully supervised to PhD:

Elizabeth Cook (1999) Psammechinus miliaris (Gmelin): Factors affecting its Somatic and Gonadal Growth and its Suitability as a Species for Echinoculture. PhD Research Project. Napier University, in collaboration with the Scottish Association for Marine Science, DML, Oban.

Stefan Bolam (1999) The importance of Spatial Patterns in Marine Benthic Population and Benthic Community Investigations. PhD Research Project. Napier University, in collaboration with Aberdeen University.

Hazel Lindsay (2002). Assembly Studies in Rockyshore Communities, Napier University, in collaboration with St Andrews University.

Jonathan Chamberlain (2003). Modelling the Impact of Shellfish Farming. PhD Research Project. Napier University, in collaboration with the Scottish Executive, FRS Marine Laboratory, Aberdeen.

Alex Ford (2005). The effects of endocrine disrupters on marine invertebrates, Napier University, in collaboration with the Scottish Executive FRSML, Aberdeen.

Julian Augley (2007). The importance of intertidal areas as flatfish nursery habitats. Napier University, in collaboration with Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh.

Celine Laurent. (2009) The development of simple models to assess the environmental capacity of coastal waters in relation with aquaculture. Napier University/EU funding through project OAERRE.

Ana Brito (2009). The Development of an Assimilative Capacity Model for the Sustainable Management of Nutrients within the Ria Formosa, Algarve. Sponsored by FCT (Portugal).

Phillip Rosenkranz (2009). Assessment of the effects of nanoparticles in invertebrate biota. Sponsored by CSL/DEFRA.

Fiona Culhane (2012). The use of benthic communities in environmental PHD PROJECTS health assessment. Sponsored by the EU project SPICOSA.

Callum Whyte (2012). An Investigation into the changes in the Phytoplankton Community in Loch Creran, a Scottish Sea loch. Sponsored by the EU project SPICOSA.

Shona O’Rourke (2013). The effects of nanomaterials on aquatic oligochaeta and polychaeta. Sponsored by the EU project NanoImpactNet.

Iain Reid (2013). Assessment of the effects of nanoparticles in aquatic snails. Sponsored by Edinburgh Napier University.

Further information

Professor Teresa Fernandes’s has focused on contaminants in natural systems and their effects on species and communities. She is particularly interested in ecosystem health, links with human health, and management of risk. Specific subjects of her research have included oil, aquaculture, organic enrichment, endocrine disruptors and nanomaterials. Another important aspect of Teresa's research is the management of aquatic and coastal systems, and the integration of science and policy for the sustainable management of natural systems. She has attracted funding from a range of national and international agencies and institutes such as NERC, DEFRA, British Council, European Commission, Danish Government, Portuguese Government, Trusts, Industry.

Currently Teresa co-supervises a team of research fellows and doctoral students, sponsored by the UK Government, Research Councils, Industry and the European Commission (FP6 and FP7). From 2006 to 2009 she was an external scientific expert of the European Commission Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Indentified Health Risks (SCENIHR). Teresa now acts as an external scientific expert on Risk Assessment of the Scientific Committees of the European Commission. She also acts as adviser to the ISO/TC 229 Task Group on Nanotechnology and Sustainability, and to the Irish EPA in the area of Nano ecotoxicology.

Teresa is a national research grant reviewer for the Swiss and French governments, as well as NERC, in the UK. Over the last five years she has organised and chaired Nanotoxicology sessions at the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) Conferences and has been a member of the organising Committees of Nanotoxicology 2008 and 2010 and Environmental Effects of Nanoparticles and Nanomaterials (University of Clemson, USA). Teresa organised the recent meeting of the European Commission Nano Safety Cluster in Edinburgh and is the coordinator of the Cluster Ecotoxicology Working Group.

Teresa is a member of the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, British Ecological Society, Estuarine and Coastal Science Association, Scottish Association for Marine Science. 

She is a grant reviewer for NERC, EPSRC, Leverhulme, the Swiss National Research Programme, The French National Research Council, The Canadian National Research Council and others.