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Chen J.,Northeast Normal University | Dou R.,Northeast Normal University | Yang Z.,Northeast Normal University | Wang X.,Northeast Normal University | And 4 more authors.
Nanotoxicology | Year: 2016

In this study, the toxicity of water-soluble carbon nanodots (C-dots) to maize (Zea mays L.) and their uptake and transport in plants were investigated. After exposed in sand matrix amended with 0–2000 mg/L C-dots for 4 weeks, we found that the phytotoxicity of C-dots was concentration-dependent. C-dots at 250 and 500 mg/L showed no toxicity to maize. However, 1000 and 2000 mg/L C-dots significantly reduced the fresh weight of root by 57% and 68%, and decreased the shoot fresh weight by 38% and 72%, respectively. Moreover, in maize roots, the exposure of C-dots at 2000 mg/L significantly increased the H2O2 content and lipid peroxidation (6.5 and 1.65 times higher, respectively), as well as, the antioxidant enzymes activities, up to 2, 1.5, 1.9 and 1.9 times higher for catalase, ascorbate peroxidase, guaiacol peroxidase and superoxide dismutase, respectively. On the other hand, C-dots were observed in detached root-cap cells, cortex and vascular bundle of roots and mesophyll cells of leaves through fluorescence microscopy analysis, suggesting that C-dots were absorbed and translocated systemically in maize. Remarkably, a certain amount of C-dots were excreted out from leaf blade. To our knowledge, this is the first study combined phenotypic observation with physiologic responses and bioaccumulation and translocation analysis of C-dots to investigate their effect and fate in maize. © 2016 Taylor & Francis.

Yang Z.,Northeast Normal University | Chen J.,Northeast Normal University | Dou R.,Northeast Normal University | Gao X.,Northeast Normal University | And 3 more authors.
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health | Year: 2015

In this study, the phytotoxicity of seven metal oxide nanoparticles (NPs)—titanium dioxide (nTiO2), silicon dioxide (nSiO2), cerium dioxide (nCeO2), magnetite (nFe3O4), aluminum oxide (nAl2O3), zinc oxide (nZnO) and copper oxide (nCuO)—was assessed on two agriculturally significant crop plants (maize and rice). The results showed that seed germination was not affected by any of the seven metal oxide NPs. However, at the concentration of 2000 mg L-1, the root elongation was significantly inhibited by nCuO (95.73% for maize and 97.28% for rice), nZnO (50.45% for maize and 66.75% for rice). On the contrary, minor phytotoxicity of nAl2O3 was only observed in maize, and no obvious toxic effects were found in the other four metal oxide NPs. By further study we found that the phytotoxic effects of nZnO, nAl2O3 and nCuO (25 to 2000 mg L-1) were concentration dependent, and were not caused by the corresponding Cu2+, Zn2+ and Al3+ ions (0.11 mg L-1, 1.27 mg L-1 and 0.74 mg L-1, respectively). Furthermore, ZnO NPs (<50 nm) showed greater toxicity than ZnO microparticles (MPs) (<5 μm) to root elongation of both maize and rice. Overall, this study provided valuable information for the application of engineered NPs in agriculture and the assessment of the potential environmental risks. © 2015 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

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