Exposing living organisms to nanoparticulates is potentially hazardous, in particular when it takes place during embryogenesis. In this investigation, we have studied the effects of 50-nm-uncoated polystyrene nanoparticles (PSNPs) as a model to investigate the suitability of their possible future employments. We have used the standardized Frog Embryo Teratogenesis Assay-Xenopus test during the early stages of larval development of Xenopus laevis, and we have employed either contact exposure or microinjections. We found that the embryos mortality rate is dose dependent and that the survived embryos showed high percentage of malformations. They display disorders in pigmentation distribution, malformations of the head, gut and tail, edema in the anterior ventral region, and a shorter body length compared with sibling untreated embryos. Moreover, these embryos grow more slowly than the untreated embryos. Expressions of the mesoderm markers, bra (T-box Brachyury gene), myod1 (myogenic differentiation1), and of neural crest marker sox9 (sex SRY (determining region Y-box 9) transcription factor sox9), are modified. Confocal microscopy showed that the nanoparticles are localized in the cytoplasm, in the nucleus, and in the periphery of the digestive gut cells. Our data suggest that PSNPs are toxic and show a potential teratogenic effect for Xenopus larvae. We hypothesize that these effects may be due either to the amount of NPs that penetrate into the cells and/or to the "corona'' effect caused by the interaction of PSNPs with cytoplasm components. The three end-points of our study, i.e., mortality, malformations, and growth inhibition, suggest that the tests we used may be a powerful and flexible bioassay in evaluating pollutants in aquatic embryos.
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11051-015-2876-x|
|Codice identificativo ISI:||WOS:000352230300004|
|Codice identificativo Scopus:||2-s2.0-84922311737|
|Titolo:||Polystyrene nanoparticles affect Xenopus laevis development|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|