Verena Gerstle

Community Ecology & Ecotoxicology
PhD student
Building I, Room 0.03


In 2016, I finished my B.Sc. degree in “Environmental Sciences” at the University of Koblenz-Landau. In my Bachelor’s thesis, I investigated effects of a combination of titanium dioxide nanoparticles and pesticides, organic matter and UV light on the water flea Daphnia magna. After doing research in the field of ecotoxicology, I decided to stay in Landau for the M.Sc. “Ecotoxicology” program and continue to work with anthropogenic stressors. In my internship at the IES in Witterswil (Switzerland) in 2017, I gained expertise in a variety of ecotoxicological tests under GLP, e.g. honey bee acute tests, solitary bee semi-field studies, collembolans, algae and Daphnia acute tests. Additionally, I worked with activated sludge and pesticides under UV light exposure.

During the research for my Master’s thesis, I first worked with amphibians where I exposed juvenile common frogs and common toads to soil contaminated with folpet and glyphosate formulations. I investigated sublethal effects on behavioral and biochemical level.

Afterwards, I got the opportunity to continue the work with amphibians and start a PhD in the SystemLink project funded by the DFG. Since October 2019, I investigate direct and indirect effects of the mosquito control agent Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis on aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, mainly focusing on the food web of amphibian larvae.

Research Interests

  • Amphibian ecotoxicology and ecology
  • Food web ecology and trophic interactions
  • Aquatic ecotoxicology
  • Mosquito control agent Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis
  • Non-target organisms

Current research Project

DFG-Graduiertenkolleg“SystemLink”: Amphibian Ecology – The mosquito control biocide Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti) directly and indirectly affects amphibians and their role in terrestrial ecosystems.

For more information on the project click here.


Adams E, Gerstle V & Brühl CA (2020 submitted): Dermal fungicide exposure at realistic field rates induces lethal and sublethal effects on juvenile European common frogs Rana temporaria. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry

Lüderwald S, Meyer F, Gerstle V, Friedrichs L, Rolfing K, Bakanov N, Schulz R, Bundschuh M (2019): Reduction of pesticide toxicity under field relevant conditions? The interaction of titanium dioxide nanoparticles, UV, and NOM. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry.


Gerstle V, Adams E, &Brühl CA (2019): Lethal and sublethal effects of viticultural pesticides (folpet and glyphosate) on juvenile Rana temporaria. 8thYoung Environmental Scientists Meeting, Ghent, Belgium (Poster presentation).