Accumulation and elimination of iron oxide nanomaterials in zebrafish (Danio rerio) upon chronic aqueous exposure

Yang Zhang , Lin Zhu , Ya Zhou , Jimiao Chen


Received May 04, 2014,Revised August 21, 2014, Accepted , Available online April 23, 2015

Volume 27,2015,Pages 223-230

A 52-day continuous semi-static waterborne exposure (test media renewed daily) regimen was employed to investigate the accumulation and elimination profiles of two iron oxide nanomaterials (nano-Fe2O3 and nano-Fe3O4) in zebrafish (Danio rerio). Adult zebrafish were exposed to nanomaterial suspensions with initial concentrations of 4.0 and 10.0 mg/L for 28 days and then were moved to clean water for 24 days to perform the elimination experiment. Fe content was measured in fish body and feces to provide data on accumulation and elimination of the two iron oxide nanomaterials in zebrafish. The experiment revealed that: (1) high accumulation of nano-Fe2O3 and nano-Fe3O4 were found in zebrafish, with maximum Fe contents, respectively, of 1.32 and 1.25 mg/g for 4.0 mg/L treatment groups and 1.15 and 0.90 mg/g for 10.0 mg/L treatment groups; (2) accumulated nanoparticles in zebrafish can be eliminated efficiently (the decrease of body burden of Fe conforms to a first-order decay equation) when fish were moved to nanoparticle-free water, and the elimination rates ranged from 86% to 100% by 24 days post-exposure; and (3) according to analysis of Fe content in fish excrement in the elimination phase, iron oxide nanomaterials may be adsorbed via the gastrointestinal tract, and stored for more than 12 days.

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