Skip to main content


International, interdisciplinary breakthrough

Research Achievements

International, interdisciplinary breakthrough

In an international, interdisciplinary project that involved EIGER trainee Kelly Plathe, EIGER PI Mike Hochella, Prof. Frank von der Kammer at the University of Vienna, Austria, and Prof. Martin Hassellov at the University of Goteborg, Sweden, a scientific breakthrough was achieved that is a direct result of what this particular IGERT program makes possible. The research involves the movement of toxic heavy metals in the environment, in this case over hundreds of miles in one of the largest contaminated sites in the United State (the Clark Fork River Superfund Site, Montana). The breakthrough discovery is that the toxic metal transport is in large part made possible by their association with mineral nanoparticles. This is the first time that this has ever been demonstrated in an actual river system. The results have recently been published in the Journal of Environmental Chemistry.