Journal of Soils and Sediments

, Volume 11, Issue 8, pp 1408–1417

The impact of iron oxide magnetic nanoparticles on the soil bacterial community

  • Shiying He
  • Youzhi Feng
  • Hongxuan Ren
  • Yu Zhang
  • Ning Gu
  • Xiangui Lin
SOILS, SEC 5 • SOIL AND LANDSCAPE ECOLOGY • RESEARCH ARTICLE

DOI: 10.1007/s11368-011-0415-7

Cite this article as:
He, S., Feng, Y., Ren, H. et al. J Soils Sediments (2011) 11: 1408. doi:10.1007/s11368-011-0415-7

Abstract

Purpose

Iron oxide magnetic nanoparticles (IOMNPs) have numerous exciting applications due to their unique chemical and physical properties. With increased applications of engineered nanostructures, releases of such materials to soil are undoubtedly inevitable. Their potential environmental risks have attracted increasing concern. One area of concern is their effect on microorganisms, which are important components of ecosystems.

Materials and methods

In this work, the effect of IOMNPs (Fe3O4 and γ-Fe2O3) on the soil bacterial community has been studied with molecular approaches and enzyme analyses. The community structure and population size were analysed using molecular-based methods, including PCR-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis and real-time quantitative PCR based on the universal bacterial biomarker, the 16S rRNA gene sequence fragment for the bacterial variable V3 region. In addition, plate counting was conducted to validate the results of molecular methods. Four enzyme activities (dehydrogenase, urease, invertase and phosphatase) involved in cycling the main biologically important nutrients (C, N and P) were measured.

Results and discussion

Our analysis revealed that the addition of IOMNPs could potentially stimulate some bacterial growth and change the soil bacterial community structure, although bacterial abundance does not change. Based on molecular fingerprinting and sequencing analysis, several potential IOMNPs-stimulated bacteria were related to Actinobacteria, such as Duganella, Streptomycetaceae or Nocardioides. Meanwhile, soil urease and invertase activities significantly increased under IOMNPs amendment, which could be a consequence of the changes in the bacterial community.

Conclusions

Molecular evidence suggests that IOMNP addition may facilitate C and N cycling in soil by influencing soil bacterial community. These findings are of great help towards building a comprehensive understanding of the potential impact of nanoparticles on the environment.

Keywords

DGGE Iron oxide magnetic nanoparticles Soil bacterial community 

Supplementary material

11368_2011_415_MOESM1_ESM.doc (1.4 mb)
ESM 1(DOC 1385 kb)

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shiying He
    • 1
  • Youzhi Feng
    • 2
  • Hongxuan Ren
    • 3
  • Yu Zhang
    • 1
  • Ning Gu
    • 1
  • Xiangui Lin
    • 2
  1. 1.Jiangsu Laboratory for Biomaterials and Devices, School of Biological Science and Medical EngineeringSoutheast UniversityNanjingPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory of Soil and Sustainable Agriculture, Institute of Soil ScienceChinese Academy of SciencesNanjingPeople’s Republic of China
  3. 3.National Center for Nanoscience and Technology of ChinaBeijingPeople’s Republic of China

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