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Toxicity Assessment of Nano-TiO2 Exposure on Nitrogen-Fixing Cyanobacteria

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Better understanding of the potential environmental impact of engineered nanomaterials is prerequisite for further advancement of nanotechnology. This study investigated the impact of nano-TiO2 exposure on primary producer algal cell-Anabaena variabilis. The combination of modern analytical techniques such as Atomic Force Microscope, Transmission Electron Microscopy and Raman microscopy allowed for both qualitative and quantitative evaluation of various impacts of nano-TiO2M on algal cells in terms of effects on growth, nitrogen fixation rate, cell surface properties alteration, intracellular structure changes and migration and bioaccumulation of the NM. Alterations in cell surface, membrane and key functional biomolecules (cyanophycin granules) and oxidative stress observed are most likely important causes of nitrogen fixation and bacterial growth inhibition. In addition, the ability of aggregated nanomaterials to dissipate overtime into smaller size and to penetrate through cell membranes suggested that internalization can occur in cyanobacteria.
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Keywords: Anabaena variabilis; Ecotoxicity; Nano Titanium Dioxide; Nanomaterials

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2010-01-01

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