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Title: Significant contribution of metastable particulate organic matter to natural formation of silver nanoparticles in soils
Authors: Huang, Ying-Nan
Qian, Ting-Ting
Dang, Fei
Yin, Yong-Guang
Li, Min
Zhou, Dong-Mei
Keywords: Science::Geology
Silver Nanoparticles
Particulate Organic Matter
Issue Date: 2019
Source: Huang, Y.-N., Qian, T.-T., Dang, F., Yin, Y.-G., Li, M., & Zhou, D.-M. (2019). Significant contribution of metastable particulate organic matter to natural formation of silver nanoparticles in soils. Nature Communications, 10, 3775-. doi:10.1038/s41467-019-11643-6
Series/Report no.: Nature Communications
Abstract: Particulate organic matter (POM) is distributed worldwide in high abundance. Although insoluble, it could serve as a redox mediator for microbial reductive dehalogenation and mineral transformation. Quantitative information on the role of POM in the natural occurrence of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) is lacking, but is needed to re-evaluate the sources of AgNPs in soils, which are commonly considered to derive from anthropogenic inputs. Here we demonstrate that POM reduces silver ions to AgNPs under solar irradiation, by producing superoxide radicals from phenol-like groups. The contribution of POM to the naturally occurring AgNPs is estimated to be 11–31%. By providing fresh insight into the sources of AgNPs in soils, our study facilitates unbiased assessments of the fate and impacts of anthropogenic AgNPs. Moreover, the reducing role of POM is likely widespread within surface environments and is expected to significantly influence the biogeochemical cycling of Ag and other contaminants that are reactive towards phenol-like groups.
DOI: 10.1038/s41467-019-11643-6
Rights: © 2019 The Author(s). This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
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