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Effects of effluent and sludge containing Ag and TiO2 nanoparticles transformed through lab-scale wastewater treatment processes

Effects of effluent and sludge containing Ag and TiO2 nanoparticles transformed through lab-scale wastewater treatment processes

Category
Conference lecture and academic presentation
Abstract
The majority of nanomaterials (NMs) used in industrial and commercial applications are likely to enter the wastewater stream and reach wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs). In Oslo, Norway, the WWTPs receive both municipal and industrial wastewater. The treated effluents are discharged to aquatic recipients and the stabilised sludges are applied on agricultural land, however, the transformation of the particles and the potential hazard they pose in these compartments are poorly understood. The overall goal of this study was to elucidate the behavior of Ag and TiO2 NPs during biological wastewater treatment, and investigate the subsequent effects of transformed particles present in the effluent and sludge relative to their pristine counterparts. A laboratory-scale wastewater treatment system was established and combined with a battery of ecotoxicological assays and characterization techniques. The system was based on activated sludge treatment with a pre-denitrification system and fed with synthetic wastewater spiked daily with 10 µg Ag NPs/L (PVP coated, 25 nm, nanoComposix) and 100 µg TiO2 NPs/L (5 nm, NM-101, JRC) over a period of 5 weeks. Samples from all reactors, including the effluent, were collected weekly and analyzed by sequential filtration and inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) to determine the NP fractionation and partitioning. Transmission electron microscopy and single particle ICP-MS were performed on selected samples. The effects of transformed particles present in the effluents were assessed using a battery of bioassays including freshwater and marine algae (growth inhibition, reactive oxygen species -ROS- formation), crustaceans and in vitro models of relevance for NP toxicity assessment (RTgill-W1 cell line, metabolic activity, epithelial integrity, ROS formation, gene expression). The effects of the aged particles through biosolids application were evaluated using coelomocytes, primary cells involved in immune defense mechanisms, isolated from the exposed earthworms Eisenia fetida. The observed effects were organism-dependent, with bottom feeding organisms and algae being more sensitive. The in vitro models offered a useful tool for the assessment of environmental samples. Through a relevant exposure scenario, this study adds useful pieces to our still fragmentary understanding of the environmental fate of weathered NPs.
Client
  • Norges forskningsråd / 238972
  • Norges forskningsråd / 221391
Language
English
Author(s)
Affiliation
  • Norwegian Institute of Water Research
  • Norwegian Institute of Water Research
  • Norwegian Institute of Bioeconomy Research
  • Norwegian Institute of Water Research
  • University of Oslo
  • SINTEF Ocean / Miljø og nye ressurser
Presented at
7th Norwegian Environmental Toxicology Symposium
Place
Longyearbyen
Date
13.03.2018 - 15.03.2018
Year
2018