Dr Divina Navarro

Dr Divina Navarro
 Position Affiliate Lecturer
 Org Unit School of Agriculture, Food and Wine
 Email divina.navarro@adelaide.edu.au
 Telephone +61 8 8313 8587
 Location Prescott (CSIRO) ,   Waite
  • Biography/ Background


    2015-PRESENT, Lecturer, University of Adelaide (School of Agriculture, Food, and Wine)

    2015-PRESENT, Research Scientist, CSIRO Land and Water (Environmental Contaminant Mitigation and Technologies Program, Contaminant Biogeochemistry and Environmental Toxicology)

    2016, (1-31 March) Visiting Professor University of the Philippines Diliman, College of Science, Institute of Chemistry (under the Visiting Professor Program of the UP-OVPAA)

    2011-2015, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, CSIRO Land and Water (Advanced Materials and Capability Platform-NanoSafety, Contaminant Chemistry and Ecotoxicology)

    2003-2006, Instructor, University of the Philippines, Diliman (Department of Chemistry)

  • Qualifications


    2011, PhD Chemistry, University at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY
    2003, BSc Chemistry, University of the Philippines, Los Baños

  • Awards & Achievements

     2011 Graduate Student Award in Environmental Chemistry. American Chemical Society, Division of Environmental Chemistry

    2010 C. Ellen Gonter Environmental Chemistry Award, Graduate Student Paper Award. American Chemical Society, Division of Environmental Chemistry


  • Research Interests

    Fields of Specialisation

    • Environmental Chemistry
    • Analytical Chemistry


    Areas of Research Interest

    • Fate and behaviour of contaminants
    • Risk assessment and safety of nanomaterials
    • Applications of nanotechnology in agriculture and remediation


    Visit my website/blog here --> Environmental_Nano

    Hear about my research: Sounds of science


    What do I do?
    I study environmental contaminants:

    • How they get into the environment? 
    • What happens to them? 
    • How do they behave under relevant environmental conditions? 
    • How do they evolve or transform? 

    Over the past years, my research interests have been on nanomaterials. These are examples of contaminants of emerging concern. I have been investigating the fate and behaviour of these materials in the environment, particularly, nanomaterials based on silver, carbon (e.g. fullerenes), quantum dots, and metal oxides. These are studies that are necessary in the assessment of their potential environmental risks.

    Why I think it matters?
    Assessment of environmental risks is important in making sure that applications of nanotechnology is developed and utilised safely. By doing these studies, we help regulatory bodies come up with appropriate rules and guidelines to protect us and the environment. 

    Why do I do it?
    I decided to pursue research in environmental chemistry because I think we owe it to ourselves (and to the next generations) to take care of the environment that we live in. I "research" because I enjoy the scientific process...thinking of a problem, having a hypothesis, designing experiments, followed by conducting experiments to test our hypothesis.

    What am I doing now?
    I have now also started to do research in using nanomaterials for applications in remediation and agriculture. I want to use what I have (so far) learned on the environmental implications of nanomaterials in contributing to the development of these applications with safety in mind.

  • Publications

    Google ScholarHERE

    *Navarro, D.A., Kookana, R.S., McLaughlin, M.J., Kirby, J.K., Fullerol as a pathway for mineralisation of fullerenes in biosolid-amended soils. Environmental Science and Technology Letters. doi:10.1021/acs.estlett.5b00292

    *Doolette, C.L., McLaughlin, M.J., Kirby, J.K., Navarro, D.A., Bioavailability of silver and silver sulfide nanoparticles to lettuce (Lactuca sativa): Effect of agricultural amendments on plant uptake. Journal of Hazardous Materials. Accepted.

    *Navarro, D.A., Kirby, J.K., McLaughlin, M.J., Waddington, L., Kookana, R.S., 2014. Remobilisation of silver and silver sulphide nanoparticles in soils. Environmental Pollution 193, 102-110.

    Wegst-Uhrich, S.R., Navarro, D.A., Zimmerman, L., *Aga, D.S., 2014. Assessing antibiotic sorption in soil: a literature review and new case studies on sulfonamides and macrolides. Chemistry Central Journal 8, 5.

    *Clabeaux, B.L., Navarro, D.A., Aga, D.S., Bisson, M.A., 2013. Combined effects of cadmium and zinc on growth, tolerance, and metal accumulation in Chara australis and enhanced phytoextraction using EDTA. Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety 98, 236-243.

    *Navarro, D.A., Kookana, R.S., Kirby, J.K., Martin, S.M., Shareef, A., Du, J., McLaughlin, M.J., 2013. Behaviour of fullerenes (C60) in the terrestrial environment: Potential release from biosolids-amended soils. Journal of Hazardous Materials 262, 496-503.

    *Batley, G.E., Halliburton, B., Kirby, J.K., Doolette, C.L., Navarro, D., McLaughlin, M.J., Veitch, C., 2013. Characterization and ecological risk assessment of nanoparticulate CeO2 as a diesel fuel catalyst. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry 32, 1896-1905.

    Navarro, D.A., Bisson, M.A., *Aga, D.S., 2012. Investigating uptake of water-dispersible CdSe/ZnS quantum dot nanoparticles by Arabidopsis thaliana plants. Journal of Hazardous Materials 211, 427-435.

    Navarro, D.A., Depner, S.W., Watson, D.F., *Aga, D.S., *Banerjee, S., 2011. Partitioning behavior and stabilization of hydrophobically coated HfO2, ZrO2, and HfxZr1-xO2 nanoparticles with natural organic matter reveal differences dependent on crystal structure. Journal of Hazardous Materials 196, 302-310.

    Navarro, D.A., Banerjee, S., Watson, D.F., *Aga, D.S., 2011. Differences in soil mobility and degradability between water-dispersible CdSe and CdSe/ZnS quantum dots. Environmental Science & Technology 45, 6343-6349.

    News Release

    Featured: Nature Nanotechnology “Our choice from the recent literature” 2011, 6, 461

    *Clabeaux, B.L., Navarro, D.A., Aga, D.S., Bisson, M.A., 2011. Cd tolerance and accumulation in the aquatic macrophyte, Chara australis: potential use for charophytes in phytoremediation. Environmental Science & Technology 45, 5332-5338.

    Akaighe, N., MacCuspie, R.I., Navarro, D.A., Aga, D.S., Banerjee, S., Sohn, M., *Sharma, V.K., 2011. Humic acid-induced silver nanoparticle formation under environmentally relevant conditions. Environmental Science & Technology 45, 3895-3901.

    Navarro, D.A., Banerjee, S., *Aga, D.S., *Watson, D.F., 2010. Partitioning of hydrophobic CdSe quantum dots into aqueous dispersions of humic substances: Influence of capping-group functionality on the phase-transfer mechanism. Journal of Colloid and Interface Science 348, 119-128.

    Navarro, D.A., Watson, D.F., *Aga, D.S., *Banerjee, S., 2009. Natural organic matter-mediated phase transfer of quantum dots in the aquatic environment. Environmental Science & Technology 43, 677-682.

    Featured: Chemical and Engineering News, Jan. 19, 2009, Quantum Dot Behavior in the Environment

    Navarro, D.A., *Kookana, R.S., Kirby, J.K. and McLaughlin, M.J. (2013) Risk assessment considerations for potential agriculture and veterinary nanomaterials: Chapter 4 - Environmental risk characterisation. CSIRO, Australia. *CSIRO contact
    FINAL APVMA document on Regulatory considerations for nanotechnology: HERE
  • Professional Associations

    • American Chemical Society
    • Society of Ecotoxicology and Chemistry
      • Nanotechnology Advisory Group Steering Committee 2015
    • Soil Science Australia


The information in this directory is provided to support the academic, administrative and business activities of the University of Adelaide. To facilitate these activities, entries in the University Phone Directory are not limited to University employees. The use of information provided here for any other purpose, including the sending of unsolicited commercial material via email or any other electronic format, is strictly prohibited. The University reserves the right to recover all costs incurred in the event of breach of this policy.

Entry last updated: Wednesday, 5 Sep 2018

To link to this page, please use the following URL:  https://www.adelaide.edu.au/directory/divina.navarro