Effect of Metal Oxide Nanoparticles on Microbial Community Structure and Function in Two Different Soil TypesReport as inadecuate

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Increased availability of nanoparticle-based products will, inevitably, expose the environment to these materials. Engineered nanoparticles ENPs may thus find their way into the soil environment via wastewater, dumpsters and other anthropogenic sources; metallic oxide nanoparticles comprise one group of ENPs that could potentially be hazardous for the environment. Because the soil bacterial community is a major service provider for the ecosystem and humankind, it is critical to study the effects of ENP exposure on soil bacteria. These effects were evaluated by measuring bacterial community activity, composition and size following exposure to copper oxide CuO and magnetite Fe3O4 nanosized <50 nm particles. Two different soil types were examined: a sandy loam Bet-Dagan and a sandy clay loam Yatir, under two ENP concentrations 1%, 0.1%. Results indicate that the bacterial community in Bet-Dagan soil was more susceptible to change due to exposure to these ENPs, relative to Yatir soil. More specifically, CuO had a strong effect on bacterial hydrolytic activity, oxidative potential, community composition and size in Bet-Dagan soil. Few effects were noted in the Yatir soil, although 1% CuO exposure did cause a significant decreased oxidative potential and changes to community composition. Fe3O4 changed the hydrolytic activity and bacterial community composition in Bet-Dagan soil but did not affect the Yatir soil bacterial community. Furthermore, in Bet-Dagan soil, abundance of bacteria annotated to OTUs from the Bacilli class decreased after addition of 0.1% CuO but increased with 1% CuO, while in Yatir soil their abundance was reduced with 1% CuO. Other important soil bacterial groups, including Rhizobiales and Sphingobacteriaceae, were negatively affected by CuO addition to soil. These results indicate that both ENPs are potentially harmful to soil environments. Furthermore, it is suggested that the clay fraction and organic matter in different soils interact with the ENPs and reduce their toxicity.

Author: Sammy Frenk, Tal Ben-Moshe, Ishai Dror, Brian Berkowitz, Dror Minz

Source: http://plos.srce.hr/


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