Phytotoxicity of silver nanoparticles to Lemna minor L.

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The use of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) in commercial products has increased significantly in recent years. Although there has been some attempt to determine the toxic effects of AgNPs, there is little information on aquatic plants which have a vital role in ecosystems. This study reports the use of Lemna minor L. clone St to investigate the phytotoxicity of AgNPs under modified OECD test conditions. AgNPs were synthesised, characterised and subsequently presented to the L. minor. Results showed that inhibition of plant growth was evident after exposure to small (∼20 nm) and larger (∼100 nm) AgNPs at low concentrations (5 μg L(-1)) and this effect became more acute with a longer exposure time. There was a linear dose-response relationship after 14 d exposure. Using predicted environmental concentrations for wastewaters it was found that AgNPs may pose a significant potential risk to the environment.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1511-1519
Number of pages9
JournalEnvironmental Pollution
Publication statusPublished - 28 Mar 2011