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On the fauna

Acute and chronic toxicity on Fauna?

According to the species (crustaceans, fish's, soil organisms,…), the exposure pathways (ingestion, direct contact with the skin, gills,…) to organisms are different. The soil organisms such as worms are exposed by direct contact or by ingestion of soil particles. The aquatic vertebrates, for example fish's, may be subject to nanomaterials across the epithelial cells of the skin and of the gills.

The main parameters indicating acute and chronic toxicity are respectively the CL50 (lethal dose 50) and the NOEC (No Observed Effect Concentration):

  • CL50: concentration necessary to kill 50% of the organisms which are exposed after a specified exposure duration,
  • NOEC: threshold below which the effects in time are not observed.

Oryzias latipes and hyalella azteca.

Many studies focus on fauna impact of nanomaterials, sometimes contradictory from one author to another one, show for a large part that nanomaterials may induce malformations, an increase of the mortality, an alteration of genes or of the reproduction [M.A. Maurer Jones et al., Analytical Chemistry 85 (2013) 3036-3049 / E. Artells et al., Plos One 8 (2013) / S.W.Y. Wong et al., Reviews in Nanoscience and Nanotechnology 2 (2013) 79-105 / L. Song et al., Chemosphere 139 (2015) 181-189].

The observed effects depend for example on the shape of the nanoparticles, of the chemical nature or of the coating [K.W.H. Kwok et al., Aquatic Toxicology 120-121 (2012) 59-66].

The phenomena of dissolution, of aggregation and of sedimentation of nanomaterials are modulators of toxic effects [D.W. Xiong et al., Science of the Total Environment 409 (2011) 1444-1452 / T.A. Xia et al., ACS Nano 5 (2011) 1223-1235].