Cerium oxide (CeO2) and zinc oxide (ZnO) nanoparticles (NPs) are extensively used in a variety of instruments and consumer goods. These NPs are of great concern because of potential toxicity towards human health and the environment. The present work aimed to assess the toxic effects of 10nm CeO2 and ZnO NPs towards the nitrogen fixing bacterium Sinorhizobium meliloti. Toxicological parameters evaluated included UV/Vis measurement of minimum inhibitory concentration, disk diffusion tests, and dynamic growth. Ultra high-resolution scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM) and infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) were utilized to determine the spatial distribution of NPs and macromolecule changes in bacterial cells, respectively. Results indicate that ZnO NPs were more toxic than CeO2 NPs in terms of inhibition of dynamic growth and viable cells counts. STEM images revealed that CeO2 and ZnO NPs were found on bacterial cell surfaces and ZnO NPs were internalized into the periplasmic space of the cells. FTIR spectra showed changes in protein and polysaccharide structures of extra cellular polymeric substances present in bacterial cell walls treated with both NPs. The growth data showed that CeO2 NPs have a bacteriostatic effect, whereas ZnO NPs is bactericidal to S. meliloti. Overall, ZnO NPs were found to be more toxic than CeO2 NPs.
- Extracellular polymeric substances
- Sinorhizobium meliloti
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Environmental Engineering
- Environmental Chemistry
- Waste Management and Disposal
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis