Ecophysiology Lab

In the last decade, the field of animal evolutionary ecology has taken a new perspective by considering the physiological mechanisms that promote and constrain the adaptation of organisms to the environment. Our lab is born with this mission in mind: conducting measurements of different physiological responses and components in the lab to allow evolutionary ecologists to add an eco-physiological perspective to their work.

We work for researchers from the MNCN, but also accept commissions from other external researchers in Spain and abroad. Our lab’s equipment includes:

  • Microplate spectrophotometer (Biotek) with visible light, UV and infrared, as well as temperature control and plate shaking
  • Real-time thermocycler (Biorad)
  • Distilled water fountain
  • Optical microscopes equipped with digital camera (Olimpus and Nikon)
  • Spectrophotometer and deuterium-halogen light source (Avantes)
  • Techne simple concentrator by N2 streams
  • Several refrigerated centrifuges (for tubes and  microtubes)
  • Magnetic and orbital shakers (tubes and plates)
  • Fume hood for working with solvents
  • Shaking water bath
  • Sonicating bath
  • Precision scales
  • pHmeter
  • Incubators




Our technique portfolio also includes protocols that rely on other services of the MNCN such as the Chromatography Lab, in which HPLC is used to determine carotenoids or malondialdehyde (a marker of oxidative stress).

The lab allows the extraction of different kinds of analyts from a variety of biological matrixes both by liquid and solid phase. Assays are performed through a series of techniques including enzyme immunoassays, liquid and gas chromatography and electrophoresis. This is a non-exhaustive list of analyts measured at the lab:

  • Steroid hormones (corticosteroids, androgens, estrogens)
  • Carotenoids, vitamins and other antioxidants
  • Pheromones and other volatile compounds
  • Markers of oxidative stress
  • Antibiotics and other pollutants
  • Immunoglobulins
  • Stress proteins
  • Humoral immunity estimates
  • Telomere length (rtPCR)
  • DNA degradation (comet tests)






Técnico del laboratorio: Fernando Riñones Pascual

Responsable científico: Diego Gil