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Biogenic Cyanide Production Promotes Dissolution of Gold Nanoparticles in Soil
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Environmental Science and Analytical Chemistry. Carnegie Mellon University, United States.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6532-866X
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Number of Authors: 82019 (English)In: Environmental Science and Technology, ISSN 0013-936X, E-ISSN 1520-5851, Vol. 53, no 3, p. 1287-1295Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Gold nanoparticles (Au NPs) are often used to study the physiochemical behavior and distribution of nanomaterials in natural systems because they are assumed to be inert under environmental conditions, even though Au can be oxidized and dissolved by a common environmental compound: cyanide. We used the cyanogenic soil bacterium, Chromobacterium violaceum, to demonstrate that quorum-sensing-regulated cyanide production could lead to a high rate of oxidative dissolution of Au NPs in soil. After 7 days of incubation in a pH 7.0 soil inoculated with C. violaceum, labile Au concentration increased from 0 to 15%. There was no observable dissolution when Au NPs were incubated in abiotic soil. In the same soil adjusted to pH 7.5, labile Au concentration increased up to 29% over the same time frame. Furthermore, we demonstrated that Au dissolution required quorum-sensing-regulated cyanide production in soil by inoculating the soil with different cell densities and using a quorum-sensing-deficient mutant of C. violaceum, CV026. Au NP dissolution experiments in liquid media coupled with mass spectrometry analysis confirmed that biogenic cyanide oxidized Au NPs to soluble Au(CN)(2)(-). These results demonstrate under which conditions biologically enhanced metal dissolution can contribute to the overall geochemical transformation kinetics of nanoparticle in soils, even though the materials may be inert in abiotic environments.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. Vol. 53, no 3, p. 1287-1295
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Environmental Engineering Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
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URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-166546DOI: 10.1021/acs.est.8b05884ISI: 000458220600026PubMedID: 30590926OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-166546DiVA, id: diva2:1293409
Available from: 2019-03-04 Created: 2019-03-04 Last updated: 2019-03-04Bibliographically approved

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McGivney, EricLowry, Gregory V.Casman, Elizabeth
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