John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

A miniaturized solid contact test with Arthrobacter globiformis for the assessment of the environmental impact of silver nanoparticles

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Silver nanoparticles (Ag‐NPs) are widely applied nowadays for their antibacterial activity. Their increasing use in consumer products implies that they will find their way into the environment via waste water treatment plants. It was the aim of the present study to compare the ecotoxicological impact of two differently designed Ag‐NPs using the solid contact test for the bacterial strain Arthrobacter globiformis. In addition, a miniaturized version of this test system was established which requires only small‐sized samples, since Ag‐NPs are produced in small quantities during the design level. The results demonstrate that the solid contact test can be performed in 24‐well microplates and that the miniaturized test system fulfills the validity criterion. Ag‐NP spiked soils show a concentration dependent reduction of the Arthrobacter dehydrogenase activity for both Ag‐NPs and silver‐ions (Ag+). The toxic effect of the investigated Ag‐NPs on the bacterial viability differs for one order of magnitude and can be related to the release of dissolved Ag+. The release of dissolved Ag+ can be attributed to particle size and surface area, respectively, and/or to the fact that Ag‐NPs are either in metallic or oxide form. Environ Toxicol Chem © 2014 SETAC

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