3 years ago

Remediation of Cadmium Toxicity by Sulfidized Nano-Iron: The Importance of Organic Material

Remediation of Cadmium Toxicity by Sulfidized Nano-Iron: The Importance of Organic Material
Louise M. Stevenson, Roger M. Nisbet, Arturo A. Keller, Adeyemi S. Adeleye, Yalei Zhang, Yiming Su
Nanozerovalent iron (nZVI) is widely used for its ability to remove or degrade environmental contaminants. However, the effect of nZVI-pollutant complexes on organisms has not been tested. We demonstrate the ability of a sulfidized derivative of nZVI (FeSSi) to sorb cadmium (Cd) from aqueous media and alleviate Cd toxicity to a freshwater alga for 32 days. FeSSi particles removed over 80% of the aqueous Cd in the first hour and nearly the same concentration of free Cd remained unbound at the end of the experiment. We found that FeSSi particles with Cd sorbed onto them are an order of magnitude more toxic than FeSSi alone. Further, algal-produced organic material facilitates safer remediation of Cd by FeSSi by decreasing the toxicity of FeSSi itself. We developed a dynamic model to predict the maximum Cd concentration FeSSi can remediate without replacing Cd toxicity with its own. FeSSi can remediate four times as much Cd to phytoplankton populations when organic material is present compared to the absence of organic material. We demonstrate the effectiveness of FeSSi as an environmental remediator and the strength of our quantitative model of the mitigation of nanoparticle toxicity by algal-produced organic material.

Publisher URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acsnano.7b05970

DOI: 10.1021/acsnano.7b05970

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