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Differential effect of silver nanoparticles on the microbiome of adult and developing planaria
Bijnens, K.; Thijs, S.; Leynen, N.; Stevens, V.; McAmmond, B.; Van Hamme, J.; Vangronsveld, J.; Artois, T.; Smeets, K. (2021). Differential effect of silver nanoparticles on the microbiome of adult and developing planaria. Aquat. Toxicol. 230: 105672.
In: Aquatic Toxicology. Elsevier Science: Tokyo; New York; London; Amsterdam. ISSN 0166-445X; e-ISSN 1879-1514, more
Peer reviewed article  

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Author keywords
    Silver nanoparticles; Planarians; Microbiome; Regeneration and development; Toxicity

Authors  Top 
  • Stevens, V., more
  • McAmmond, B.
  • Van Hamme, J.

    Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) are widely incorporated in household, consumer and medical products. Their unintentional release via wastewaters raises concerns on their environmental impact, particularly for aquatic organisms and their associated bacterial communities. It is known that the microbiome plays an important role in its host’s health and physiology, e.g. by producing essential nutrients and providing protection against pathogens. A thorough understanding of the effects of AgNPs on bacterial communities and on their interactions with the host is crucial to fully assess AgNP toxicity on aquatic organisms. Our results indicate that the microbiome of the invertebrate Schmidtea mediterranea, a freshwater planarian, is affected by AgNP exposure at the tested 10 μg/ml concentration. Using targeted amplification of the bacterial 16S rRNA gene V3–V4 region, two independent experiments on the microbiomes of adult worms revealed a consistent decrease in Betaproteobacteriales after AgNP exposure, mainly attributed to a decrease in Curvibacter and Undibacterium. Although developing tissues and organisms are known to be more sensitive to toxic compounds, three independent experiments in regenerating worms showed a less pronounced effect of AgNP exposure on the microbiome, possibly because underlying bacterial community changes during development mask the AgNP induced effect. The presence of a polyvinyl-pyrrolidone (PVP) coating did not significantly alter the outcome of the experiments compared to those with uncoated particles. The observed variation between the different experiments underlines the highly variable nature of microbiomes and emphasises the need to repeat microbiome experiments, within and between physiological states of the animal.

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