Bioavailability of Nanoscale Metal Oxides TiO2, CeO2, and ZnO to Fish

BD Johnston, TM Scown, J Moger, Susan Cumberland, Mohamed Baalousha, K Linge, R van Aerle, K Jarvis, Jamie Lead, CR Tyler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

214 Citations (Scopus)


Nanoparticles (NPs) are reported to be a potential environmental health hazard. For organisms living in the aquatic environment, there is uncertainty on exposure because of a lack of understanding and data regarding the fate, behavior, and bioavailability of the nanomaterials in the water column. This paper reports on a series of integrative biological and physicochemical studies on the uptake of unmodified commercial nanoscale metal oxides, zinc oxide (ZnO), cerium dioxide (CeO2), and titanium dioxide (TiO2), from the water and diet to determine their potential ecotoxicological impacts on fish as a function of concentration. Particle characterizations were performed and tissue concentrations were measured by a wide range of analytical methods. Definitive uptake from the water column and localization of TiO2 NPS in gills was demonstrated for the first time by use of coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) microscopy. Significant uptake of nanomaterials was found only for cerium in the liver of zebrafish exposed via the water and ionic titanium in the gut of trout exposed via the diet. For the aqueous exposures undertaken, formation of large NP aggregates (up to 3 mu m) occurred and it is likely that this resulted in limited bioavailability of the unmodified metal oxide NIPS in fish.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1144-1151
Number of pages8
JournalEnvironmental Science & Technology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2010


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