The impact of human activities in Antarctica on the local fauna was investigated by developing and applying biochemical and molecular genetic techniques to the assessment of the impact of by-products of human activities on a single fish species Trematomus bernacchii. Individual fish were collected from two sites; Winterquarters Bay next to McMurdo Station and Backdoor Bay, Cape Royds next to a ... site of special scientific interest and thus very little impact. Tissue levels of hydrocarbon pollutants (Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH) found in products such as diesel fuel) were measured from samples of bile because when animals are exposed to pollutants the body transfers the toxins to the bile before discharge. Blood samples and morphometric data were collected before dissection and the removal of the gonads and liver for histological analysis and RNA extraction during dissection. Exposure to PAH can induce transcription of the gene P450 1A, the final product of which is an enzyme that assists in the detoxifying process. The extent of gene induction was measured as an indication of the amount of exposure of fish to PAH pollutants present in the environment.