Effects of Differently Coated Silver Nanoparticles on the Photosynthesis of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii.

Environmental science & technology

PubMedID: 26018638

Navarro E, Wagner B, Odzak N, Sigg L, Behra R. Effects of Differently Coated Silver Nanoparticles on the Photosynthesis of Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Environ Sci Technol. 2015;.
Various factors have been invoked to explain the toxicity of silver nanoparticles (AgNP) to microorganisms including particle size and the nature of stabilizing coatings as well as the amount of dissolved silver occurring in AgNP suspensions. In this study we have assessed the effects of nine differently coated AgNP (chitosan, lactate, polyvinylpyrrolidone, polyethelene glycol, gelatin, sodium dodecylbenzenesulfonate, citrate, dexpanthenol, and carbonate) and AgNO3 on the photosynthesis of the freshwater algae Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. We have thus examined how AgNP effects on algae relate to particle size, measured dissolved silver (Agd), and bioavailable silver (Agbioav). Agbioav was indirectly estimated in toxicity experiments by cysteine-silver complexation at the EC50. The EC50 calculated as a function of measured Agd concentrations showed for some coatings values similar to that of dissolved Ag, whereas other coated AgNP displayed lower EC50 values. In all cases, excess cysteine completely prevented effects on photosynthetic yield, confirming the role of Agd as a cause of the observed effect on the photosynthesis. Toxicity was related neither to particle size nor to the coatings. For all differently coated AgNP suspensions, the EC50 values calculated as a function of Agbioav were comparable to the value of AgNO3. Depending on the coatings Agbioav was comparable to or higher than measured Agd.