Investigation of The Effect of Physicochemical Factors of Water on Bioavailability, Toxicity and the Level of Effectiveness of Metal Nanoparticles in Aquatic Ecosystems

Document Type : Original Article/Regular article


1 Department of Fisheries, Faculty of Natural Resources, University of Tehran, Karaj, Iran

2 Inland Waters Aquaculture Research Center, Iranian Fisheries Science Research Institute (IFSRI), Agriculture Research Education and Extension Organization (AREEO), Bandar-e Anzali, Iran


Aquaculture is known as a growing industry in the world. This important industry provides food and income to local communities. Hence, it plays an important role in the economic development of countries. So far, nanotechnology has been used as an emerging knowledge in many industries, including the aquaculture sector. One of the manifestations of nanotechnology in the aquaculture industry is the use of metal nanoparticles, which is used to feeding aquatic animals, improving water quality and controlling diseases. Although these materials are widely used in aquaculture, the increase in their production and application has raised many concerns about the potential toxicity to human health and the environment. So far, several studies have been conducted on the toxic effects of metal nanoparticles in aquatic environments, but the role of environmental factors in the toxicity of these materials has received less attention. The present study was conducted to investigate the effect of some physicochemical factors of water (including temperature, salinity, oxygen content, water hardness, pH and organic matter) on bioavailability,   toxicity and level of impact of metal nanoparticles in aquatic ecosystems. The findings showed that the factors play an important role in reducing or increasing the effectiveness of pollutants in aquatic ecosystems. Therefore, it is necessary to consider the importance and effectiveness of these factors in studies aimed at evaluating the toxicity of nanoparticles.


رادخواه ع.، ایگدری س. و صادقی‏نژاد ماسوله ا. 1399. بررسی خواص ضد‌میکروبی نانو ذرات نقره (AgNPs) به‏منظور کنترل بیماری‌ها و مدیریت بهداشت در سیستم‌های آبزی‌پروری. مجله آبزیان زینتی، 7(۱): 7-15.
رادخواه ع.، ایگدری س. و موسوی ثابت ح. 1400. مروری بر فواید و مضرات فناوری نانو در صنعت آبزی‌‌پروری. مجله آبزیان زینتی، 8(2): 43-58.

Batchelor-McAuley C., Tschulik K., Neumann C., Laborda E. and Compton R.G. 2014. Why are silver nanoparticles more toxic than bulk silver? Towards understanding the dissolution and toxicity of silver nanoparticles. International Journal of Electrochemical Science, 9(3): 1132–1138.
Bonnail E., Sarmiento A.M., DelValls T.A., Nieto J.M. and Riba I. 2016. Assessment of metal contamination, bioavailability, toxicity and bioaccumulation in extreme metallic environments (Iberian Pyrite Belt) using Corbicula fluminea. Science of the Total Environment, 544: 1031–1044.
Bryan G.W. and Hummerstone L.G. 1971. Adaptation of the polychaete Nereis diversicolor to estuarine sediments containing high concentrations of heavy metals. I. General observations and adaptation to copper. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, 52: 845–863.
Bryan G.W. and Hummerstone L.G. 1973. Adaptation of the polychaete Nereis diversicolor to estuarine sediments containing high concentrations of zinc and cadmium. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom, 53: 839–857.
Bundschuh M., Seitz F., Rosenfeldt R.R. and Schulz R. 2016. Effects of nanoparticles in fresh waters: risks, mechanisms and interactions. Freshwater Biology, 61(12): 2185–2196.
Bundschuh M., Filser J., Lüderwald S., McKee M.S., Metreveli G., Schaumann G.E., Schulz R. and Wagner S. 2018. Nanoparticles in the environment: where do we come from, where do we go to? Environmental Sciences Europe, 30(1): 6.
Buzea C., Pacheco I.I. and Robbie K. 2007. Nanomaterials and nanoparticles: sources and toxicity. Biointerphases, 2: 17–71.
Chen K.L. and Elimelech M. 2007. Influence of humic acid on the aggregation kinetics of fullerene (C60) nanoparticles in monovalent and divalent electrolyte solutions. Journal of Colloid and Interface Science, 309: 126–134.
Fletcher C.R. 1970. The regulation of calcium and magnesium in the brackish water polychaete Nereis diversicolor. Journal of Experimental Biology, 53: 425–443.
Forstner U. and Wittmann G.T.W. 1983. Metal pollution in the aquatic environment. 2nd edition. Volume 2, Springer International Publishing. NewYork, USA.
Garside M. 2019. Global nanotechnology market value 2010-2020. (visited 25 April 2020).
Gheorghe S., Stoica C., Vasile G.G., Nita-Lazar M., Stanescu E. and Lucaciu I.E. 2017. Metals toxic effects in aquatic ecosystems: Modulators of water quality. IntechOpen, 4: 75-87.
Joner E.J., Hartnik T. and Amundsen C.E. 2008. Environmental fate and ecotoxicity of engineered nanoparticles. Report no. TA 2304/2007. Joner E.J., Hartnik T. and Amundsen C.E. (Eds.). Volume 1. Bioforsk Publishing, Ås Municipality, Norway.
Jones J.R.E. 1946. The oxygen consumption of Gasterostens aculeatus L. in toxic solutions. Journal of Experimental Biology, 23: 298-311.
Joo H.S., Kalbassi M.R. and Johari S.A. 2018. Hematological and histopathological effects of silver nanoparticles in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss)-how about increase of salinity? Environmental Science and Pollution Research, 25(16): 15449–15461.
Kalbassi M.R., Salari-joo H. and Johari A. 2011. Toxicity of silver nanoparticles in aquatic ecosystems: salinity as the main cause in reducing toxicity. Iranian Journal of Toxicology, 5(1-2): 436–443.
Khalili Fard J., Jafari S. and Eghbal M.A. 2015. A review of molecular mechanisms involved in toxicity of nanoparticles. Advanced Pharmaceutical Bulletin, 5(4): 447–454.
Kittler S., Greulich C., Diendorf J., Koller M. and Epple M. 2010. Toxicity of silver nanoparticles increases during storage because of slow dissolution under release of silver ions. Chemistry of Materials, 22(16): 4548–4554.
Klaine S.J., Koelmans A.A., Horne N., Carley S., Handy R.D., Kapustka L., Nowack B. and von der Kammer F. 2012. Paradigms to assess the environmental impact of manufactured nanomaterials. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, 31: 3-14..
Koppe P. 1973. Untersuchungen tiber das Verhalten von Inhaltsstoffen der Abwiisser der metallverarbeitenden Industrie im Wasserkreislauf und ihren Einflull. auf die Wasserversorgung. GWF Wasser Abwasser, 114: 170–175.
Krysanov E., Pavlov D., Demidova T. and Dgebuadze Y. 2010. Effect of nanoparticles on aquatic organisms. Biology Bulletin, 37: 406-412.
Li M., Lin D.H. and Zhu L.Z. 2013. Effects of water chemistry on the dissolution of ZnO nanoparticles and their toxicity to Escherichia coli. Environmental Pollution, 173: 97–102.
Lin D.H., Ji J., Long Z.F., Yang K. and Wu F.C. 2012. The influence of dissolved and surfacebound humic acid on the toxicity of TiO2 nanoparticles to Chlorella sp. Water Research, 46(14): 4477–4487.
Liu J.Y. and Hurt R.H. 2010. Ion release kinetics and particle persistence in aqueous nano-silver colloids. Environmental Science and Technology, 44(6): 2169–2175.
Liu W., Long Y., Yin N., Zhao X., Sun C., Zhou Q. and Jiang G. 2016. Engineered nanoparticles and the environment: biophysicochemical processes and toxicity, First edition. Xing, B., Vecitis, C.D. and Senesi, N (eds.). Volume 1. John Wiley & Sons, Inc. New Jersey, USA. 
Lloyd R.M. 1965. Factors that affect the tolerance of fish to heavy metal poisoning. BioI. Problems in Water Pollution, 3rd Seminar 1962. United States Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Washington, USA.
Luis A.I.S., Campos E.V.R., Oliveira J.L. and Fraceto L.F. 2019. Trends in aquaculture sciences: from now to use of nanotechnology for disease control. Reviews in Aquaculture, 11: 119–132.
Márquez J.C.M., Partida A.H., Dosta M.D.C.M., Mejía J.C. and Martínez J.A.B. 2018. Silver nanoparticles applications (AgNPS) in aquaculture. International Journal of Fisheries and Aquatic Studies, 6(2): 5–11.
Naguib M., Mahmoud U.M., Mekkawy I.A. and Sayed A.E.H. 2020. Hepatotoxic effects of silver nanoparticles on Clarias gariepinus; biochemical, histopathological and histochemical studies. Toxicology Reports, 7: 133–141.
Oberdörster G., Oberdörster E. and Oberdörster J. 2005. Nanotechnology: an emerging discipline evolving from studies of ultrafine particles. Environmental Health Perspectives, 113(7): 823–839.
Ottofuelling S., Von Der Kammer F. and Hofmann T. 2011. Commercial titanium dioxide nanoparticles in both natural and synthetic water: comprehensive multidimensional testing and prediction of aggregation behavior. Environmental Science and Technology, 45(23): 10045–10052.
Park J., Kim S., Yoo J., Lee J-S., Park J.W. and Jung J. 2014. Effect of salinity on acute copper and zinc toxicity to Tigriopus japonicus: The difference between metal ions and nanoparticles. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 85(2): 526–531.
Phenrat T., Song J.E., Cisneros C.M., Schoenfelder D.P., Tilton R.D. and Lowry G.V. 2010. Estimating attachment of nano- and submicrometer-particles coated with organic macromolecules in porous media: development of an empirical model. Environmental Science and Technology, 44(12): 4531–4538.
Philippe A. and Schaumann G.E. 2014. Interactions of dissolved organic matter with natural and engineered inorganic colloids: a review. Environmental Science and Technology, 48(16): 8946–8962.
Radkhah A.R. 2017. Introduction to some species of Argulus (Crustacea: Branchiura), parasitic infections in the freshwater fishes. Journal of Applied Sciences and Environmental Management, 21(7): 1268–1271.
Rajkumar K., Kanipandian N. and Thirumurugan R. 2016. Toxicity assessment on haemotology, biochemical and histopathological alterations of silver nanoparticles-exposed freshwater fish Labeo rohita. Applied Nanoscience, 6: 19–29. 
Rana S. and Kalaichelvan P.T. 2013. Ecotoxicity of nanoparticles. International Scholarly Research Notices, 10: 1-11. 
Rather M.A., Sharma R., Aklakur M., Ahmad S., Kumar N., Khan M. and Ramya V.L. 2011. Nanotechnology: a novel tool for aquaculture and fisheries development. A prospective mini-Review. Fisheries and Aquaculture Journal, 16: 1–6.
Reinhard D. and Forstner U. 1976. Metallanreicherungen in Sedimentkernen aus Stauhaltungen des mittleren Neckars. Neues Jahrbuch für Geologie und Paläontologie, 5: 301–320.
Ren C., Hu X. and Zhou Q. 2016. Influence of environmental factors on nanotoxicity and knowledge gaps thereof. NanoImpact, 2: 82–92.
Rispoli F., Angelov A., Badia D., Kumar A., Seal S. and Shah V. 2010. Understanding the toxicity of aggregated zero valent copper nanoparticles against Escherichia coli. Journal of Hazardous Materials, 180(1-3): 212–216.
Schweiger G. 1956. The toxic action of heavy metals salts on fish and organisms . Archive Fishereiwiss: 8: 54-78.
Shah B.H. and Mraz J. 2019. Advances in nanotechnology for sustainable aquaculture and fisheries. Reviews in Aquaculture. Accepted for publication. 
Tabata K. 1969. Studies on the toxicity of heavy metals to aquatic animals and the factors to decrease the toxicity. Bulletin Tokai Regional Fisheries Research Laboratory, 58: 203–261.
Thummabancha K., Onparn N. and Srisapoome P. 2016. Analysis of hematologic alterations, immune responses and metallothionein gene expression in Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) exposed to silver nanoparticles. Journal of Immunotoxicology, 13(6): 909–917.
Torres-Martínez Y., Arredondo-Espinoza E., Puente C., González-Santiago O., Pineda-Aguilar N., Balderas-Rentería I., López I. and Ramírez-Cabrera M.A. 2019. Synthesis of silver nanoparticles using a Mentha spicata extract and evaluation of its anticancer and cytotoxic activity. PeerJ- Life and Environment, 7: 1-13.
Walters C., Pool E. and Somerset V. 2013. Aggregation and dissolution of silver nanoparticles in a laboratory-based freshwater microcosm under simulated environmental conditions. Toxicology and Environmental Chemistry, 95(10): 1690–1701.
Walters C., Pool E. and Somerset V. 2016. Nanotoxicology: A review, toxicology - new aspects to this scientific conundrum. IntechOpen, 1: 20-40.
Whitley L.S. 1968. The resistance of tubificid worms to three common pollutons. Hydrobiologia, 32: 193-205.
Wong S.W.Y. and Leung K.M.Y. 2014. Temperature-dependent toxicities of nano zinc oxide to marine diatom, amphipod and fish in relation to its aggregation size and ion dissolution. Nanotoxicology, 8: 24–35.
Zhang S.J., Jiang Y.L., Chen C.S., Spurgin J., Schwehr K.A., Quigg A. and et al. 2012. Aggregation, dissolution, and stability of quantum dots in marine environments: importance of extracellular polymeric substances. Environmental Science and Technology, 46(16): 8764–8772.
Zhou D.X., Ji Z.X., Jiang X.M., Dunphy D.R., Brinker J. and Keller A.A. 2013. Influence of material properties on TiO2 nanoparticle agglomeration. PLoS ONE, 8(11):1239-1247.
Zitko V. and Carson W.G. 1976. A mechanism of the effects of water hardness on the lethality of heavy metals to fish. Chemosphere, 5: 299-303.
Volume 8, Issue 2 - Serial Number 20
Water, law and ethics
September 2021
Pages 71-90
  • Receive Date: 20 February 2021
  • Accept Date: 04 April 2021
  • First Publish Date: 23 August 2021