Functional Nanoparticles for Environmental Contaminants Removal and Agricultural Application

A special issue of Coatings (ISSN 2079-6412). This special issue belongs to the section "Environmental Aspects in Colloid and Interface Science".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 September 2023) | Viewed by 24232

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College of Ecology and Environment, Nanjing Forestry University, Nanjing 210037, China
Interests: environmental science; environmental contaminants; PAHs; nanoparticles
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Sustainably providing a safe and secure food supply will be a significant challenge in the coming years and the field of nanotechnology is well positioned to have a tremendous positive impact on these efforts. The potential benefits are numerous, including enhancement of food quality and safety, reduction of environmental waste and agricultural inputs, and the absorption of nanoscale nutrients from soil. The application of nanotechnology could also better enable plants to respond to a changing environment. Nanotechnology can also play an important role in crop productivity through the control of nutrient availability and utilization, as well as through mediating nutritional status in the presence of biotic and abiotic stress. Nanoscale platforms can also be used to monitor water quality parameters, including for pesticide residue presence, in efforts to promote the sustainable development of agriculture. Nanomaterials have tremendously diverse functionality and as such, it is difficult to deliver a general assessment of crop health and environmental risks. For example, although dose is clearly one of the most important factors differentiating benefit from toxicity, factors such as environmental conditions and species sensitivity can dramatically shift that dividing line. In addition, the properties (other than size) of nanoparticles that influence toxicity include chemical composition, shape, surface structure, surface charge, and the extent of particle aggregation (clumping) or disaggregation. For this reason, even nanomaterials of the same chemical composition having different sizes or shapes can exhibit different toxicity or benefit. There is also a general lack of understanding of how transformation processes in biotic and abiotic media influence overall nanomaterial activity. Regardless, nanotechnology applications in the agricultural sector have been a topic of intense interest and many argue a key factor for sustainable development. To explore this important topic, we are assembling a special issue of Coatings to encourage researchers and to provide them with a platform to publish their novel studies on the topic “Functional Nanoparticles for Environmental Contaminants Removal and Agricultural Application.”

The theme of this special issue broadly includes (but is not limited to):

  • Nano-fertilizers, nano-fertilizers refer to a series of products in nanometer regime that delivers nutrients to crops. For example, encapsulation inside nanomaterials coated with a thin protective polymer film or in the form of particles or emulsions of nanoscale dimensions;
  • Nano-pesticides, Nano-pesticides or nano plant protection products represent an emerging technological development that, in relation to pesticide use, could offer a range of benefits including increased efficacy, durability, and a reduction in the amounts of active ingredients that need to be used;
  • Nano-biosensors for soil–plant systems, nano-biosensors are usually built on the nanoscale to obtain process and analyze the data at the level of atomic scale; the applications include detection of analytes like urea, glucose, pesticides etc., monitoring of metabolites and detection of various microorganisms/pathogens;
  • Nanomaterials for environmental remediation, nanomaterials show a better performance in environmental remediation than other conventional techniques because of their high surface area (surface-to-volume ratio) and their associated high reactivity.

Prof. Dr. Yu Shen
Guest Editor

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Published Papers (13 papers)

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Editorial

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5 pages, 205 KiB  
Editorial
Special Issue: Functional Nanoparticles for Environmental Contaminants Removal and Agricultural Application
by Ran Tao, Mengmeng Kong, Yinlong Zhang and Yu Shen
Coatings 2023, 13(9), 1633; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings13091633 - 18 Sep 2023
Viewed by 785
Abstract
Currently, increasing demands are being placed on agricultural production, presented with the challenge of finding sustainable ways to meet the needs of the world’s growing population [...] Full article

Research

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15 pages, 7467 KiB  
Article
A Novel Magnetic Fluorescent Fe3O4@ZnS@MPS Nanosensor for Highly Sensitive Determination and Removal of Ag+
by Yan Gao, Xin Chen, Ping Xu, Jie Chen, Shihua Yu, Zhigang Liu and Xiaodan Zeng
Coatings 2023, 13(9), 1557; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings13091557 - 06 Sep 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 729
Abstract
A novel magnetic fluorescent nanoprobe (Fe3O4@ZnS@MPS(MFNPs)) was synthesized, which recognized and cooperated with Ag+ ions, and a rapid method for detecting Ag+ was established in solution. It was found by fluorescence spectroscopy analysis that the MFNPs could [...] Read more.
A novel magnetic fluorescent nanoprobe (Fe3O4@ZnS@MPS(MFNPs)) was synthesized, which recognized and cooperated with Ag+ ions, and a rapid method for detecting Ag+ was established in solution. It was found by fluorescence spectroscopy analysis that the MFNPs could detect Ag+ in PBS solution and, upon addition of Ag+ ions, the fluorescence (FL) of MFNPs could be quenched significantly. The sensor has a low limit of detection (LOD) of 7.04 µM for Ag+. The results showed that MFNPs were extremely specific and sensitive for the quantitative detection of Ag+ over a wide pH range. Then, the recognition mechanism between MFNPs and guest Ag+ was explored via measures of infrared spectroscopy and electron microscopy. It was speculated that the oxygen atoms in the sulfonic acid group cooperated with Ag+ to form a synergistic complexation. The assay was successfully used to determine the content of Ag+ in real samples. Full article
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12 pages, 3215 KiB  
Article
The Application of Carotenoid-Coated Chitosan Nanoparticles to Reduce the PAHs Stress on Spinach Growth
by Jin Zhang, Menghan Cui, Ran Tao, Yifan Yao, Jiangang Han and Yu Shen
Coatings 2023, 13(8), 1404; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings13081404 - 10 Aug 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 835
Abstract
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) pose risks to human and animal health, and their accumulation in crops is a concern for the food chain in the environment. Nanoparticles (NPs) have shown potential for chemical delivery and can be used to enhance plant resistance to [...] Read more.
Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) pose risks to human and animal health, and their accumulation in crops is a concern for the food chain in the environment. Nanoparticles (NPs) have shown potential for chemical delivery and can be used to enhance plant resistance to PAHs. In this study, carotenoid-coated chitosan nanoparticles (CCNPs) loaded with β-carotene were prepared and applied to spinach grown in PAH-contaminated soil. The size of the CCNPs varied based on reaction conditions with temperature, TPP, and pH, with sizes ranging from 260 to 682 nm. After four weeks of treatment, the spinach showed varying growth responses depending on the specific CCNP treatment. The treatment with CCNPs prepared at 20 °C, pH 6, and 10 mg/mL TPP resulted in the best spinach growth, while the treatment at 40 °C, pH 6, and a TPP concentration of 20 mg/mL hindered growth; and the growth ration increased by over 47.4% compared to the normal growing spinach, the final biomass reached 2.53 g per plant. In addition, phenanthrene (PHE) and pyrene (PYR) predominantly accumulated more in the spinach roots, with variations depending on the specific CCNP treatment. The exogenous application of CCNPs can reduce the PAH transfer to the shoots. The bioconcentration factors and transfer factors of PYR and PHE reduced differential movement within the spinach plants, and the spinach prefers PYR to PHE in biological accumulation. This study offers a new understanding of the mechanisms underlying NPs and PAHs interactions and NP’s implications for crop protection and food safety. Full article
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12 pages, 2940 KiB  
Article
Heterogeneous Fenton-like Catalyzation of Nanoscale Schwertmannite for Sulfamethoxazole Degradation
by Xiaoqing Meng, Lin Wang, Ying Yang, Yuqi Song and Cansheng Yuan
Coatings 2023, 13(6), 1097; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings13061097 - 14 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2615
Abstract
Sulfamethoxazole (SMX) contamination in large quantities of wastewater can cause potential environmental problems. Due to difficulty in degrading SMX by natural processes, it is necessary to develop a novel technology to solve this problem. Advanced oxidation processes (AOPs) have been identified as methods [...] Read more.
Sulfamethoxazole (SMX) contamination in large quantities of wastewater can cause potential environmental problems. Due to difficulty in degrading SMX by natural processes, it is necessary to develop a novel technology to solve this problem. Advanced oxidation processes (AOPs) have been identified as methods with a high potential to treat recalcitrant organic pollutants. The nanoscale schwertmannite (nano-SWT) was prepared with an indoor-temperature synthesis method facilitated by polyvinylpyrrolidone (PVP). In this study, we performed a reaction of the nano-SWT materials with Fenton-like catalysts for SMX degradation in hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) media. The findings showed that the nano-SWT prepared by addition of 0.1 g·L−1 PVP (nano-SWT-n, n = 0.1) could degrade 92.5% of the SMX within 90 min at indoor temperature, which was due to the nano-SWT providing abundant reaction sites at the solid/solution interfaces. Additionally, SMX could be highly mineralized with 75% TOC removal and H2O2 was efficiently utilized during the nano-SWT/H2O2 process. In addition, after six cycles of Fenton-like degradation, the nano-SWT remained stable and reusable as a Fenton-like catalyst for SMX degradation. The nano-SWT performed well as a catalyst for SMX degradation. Additionally, this work provides a feasible environmental purification approach for the efficient degradation of SMX through the use of nanoscale schwertmannite as a catalyst in heterogeneous Fenton-like systems. Full article
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15 pages, 4709 KiB  
Article
N-Rich Algal Sludge Biochar for Peroxymonosulfate Activation toward Sulfadiazine Removal
by Chao Liu, Zhenxiang Chen, Ruiqin Kang, Jing Wang, Qingwei Lu, Tao Wang, Dayong Tian, Ying Xu, Zhan Wang and Huiping Ding
Coatings 2023, 13(2), 431; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings13020431 - 14 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1205
Abstract
The fabrication of a green, high activity and low-cost carbon-based catalyst capable of activating new oxidant (peroxymonosulfate, PMS) for contaminants abatement is needed. In this research, we prepared novel N-doped biochars via one-step pyrolysis of algal sludge without external nitrogen sources. The obtained [...] Read more.
The fabrication of a green, high activity and low-cost carbon-based catalyst capable of activating new oxidant (peroxymonosulfate, PMS) for contaminants abatement is needed. In this research, we prepared novel N-doped biochars via one-step pyrolysis of algal sludge without external nitrogen sources. The obtained ASBC800 possessed the largest specific surface area (SBET = 145.596 m2 g−1) and thus it displayed the best catalytic performance, as revealed by the effective elimination of sulfadiazine (SDZ, >95% within 70 min) with 0.2 g L−1 ASBC800 and 0.5 mM PMS. Both radical species (e.g., SO4•−, and OH), and nonradical regime (1O2 and electron-transfer) contributed to SDZ oxidation, in which ASBC800 played essential roles in activating PMS, accumulating SDZ, and regulating electron shuttle from SDZ to ASBC800-PMS*. Overall, this work not only provides a novel strategy for the synthesis of N-rich and cost-effective biochar but also promotes the development and application of carbon-based functional materials in environmental remediation. Full article
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12 pages, 2333 KiB  
Article
The Role of Biochar Nanoparticles Performing as Nanocarriers for Fertilizers on the Growth Promotion of Chinese Cabbage (Brassica rapa (Pekinensis Group))
by Ruiping Yang, Jiamin Shen, Yuhan Zhang, Lin Jiang, Xiaoping Sun, Zhengyang Wang, Boping Tang and Yu Shen
Coatings 2022, 12(12), 1984; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings12121984 - 18 Dec 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1849
Abstract
Chinese cabbage (Brassica rapa) belongs to the Pekinensis Group and is grown annually as a salad crop. It is one of the most important food crops in Eastern Asia and the most widely grown vegetable in China, accounting for more one-quarter [...] Read more.
Chinese cabbage (Brassica rapa) belongs to the Pekinensis Group and is grown annually as a salad crop. It is one of the most important food crops in Eastern Asia and the most widely grown vegetable in China, accounting for more one-quarter of the total annual vegetable consumption in northern parts of the country. It is reported that nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) fertilizations play important roles in the physio-morphological traits and yields of Chinese cabbage. However, N, P, and K use in agriculture continues to increase. Excessive application of fertilizers has a harmful impact on the environment. Yet how to improve the irrigation effects on Chinese cabbage growth is still limited. In this study, we firstly selected biochar nanoparticles (BNPs) prepared from corn straw, which had been air-dried and heated in a muffle furnace at 350 °C for 120 min, with K (potassium sulfate), N (calcium nitrate tetrahydrate), and P (sodium dihydrogen phosphate dihydrate) fertilizers. Then, a screening experiment (Experiment I) was performed via the response model to find the best solution for Chinese cabbage growth. Treatment with 2 g/kg of N and 2 g/kg of K for 4 weeks was the optimum application to promote Chinese cabbage growth. Then, a comparison experiment (Experiment II) was carried out to test the best formula for Chinese cabbage growth with or without BNPs. After co-irrigation with N and K for 4 weeks, treatment with a combination of 2 g/kg of BNPs, 2 g/kg of N, and 2 g/kg of K was the optimum formula for Chinese cabbage growth. Plant biomass increased by more than 1796.86% and 32.80%, respectively, in two combined treatments of BNPs and fertilizers as compared to the control treatment. After the addition of BNPs, Chinese cabbage height (aboveground) and the dry weight of belowground biomass in the N + K treatment increased to 10.97% and 20.48%, respectively. These results suggest that BNPs have great potential as a nanocarrier for fertilization as they are highly efficient (over 50% increase), reducing fertilizer use while promoting plant growth. The use of BNPs as a nanocarrier for fertilizers represents a step toward more environmentally friendly agriculture. Full article
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11 pages, 3156 KiB  
Article
Sedum Plumbizincicola Derived Functional Carbon for Activation of Peroxymonosulfate to Eliminate Bisphenol A: Performance and Reaction Mechanisms
by Chao Liu, Zhenxiang Chen, Ruiqin Kang, Yongsheng Niu, Wenhui Su, Xiaolong Wang, Dayong Tian and Ying Xu
Coatings 2022, 12(12), 1892; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings12121892 - 05 Dec 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1071
Abstract
Carbon-based functional materials are deemed to be excellent candidates to adsorb contaminants from wastewater, yet their catalytic roles in advanced oxidation processes (AOPs) are still ambiguous. Therefore, four functional carbons (SPFCx) were fabricated in this study under various pyrolysis temperatures by using Sedum [...] Read more.
Carbon-based functional materials are deemed to be excellent candidates to adsorb contaminants from wastewater, yet their catalytic roles in advanced oxidation processes (AOPs) are still ambiguous. Therefore, four functional carbons (SPFCx) were fabricated in this study under various pyrolysis temperatures by using Sedum plumbizincicola (SP) residues (a kind of phytoremediation plant) as the precursors. Notably, SPFC800 exhibited the best adsorption capacity (qe = 26.081 mg g−1) toward bisphenol A (BPA) due to its having the largest specific surface area (121.57 m2 g−1). By injecting peroxymonosulfate (PMS, 5.0 mM), BPA (10 mg L−1) could be completely removed within 70 min. More importantly, the BPA removal was stable and effective even in complex wastewater. Interestingly, radicals played minor roles in the SPFC800/PMS system, while nonradical mechanisms (i.e., 1O2 and electron-transfer regime) were responsible for the BPA elimination, which was verified by quenching tests, solvent exchange experiments (H2O2→D2O), and electrochemical experiments. Overall, this work may provide a facile and green method for BPA contaminated-wastewater purification and promote the application of AOPs in environmental remediation. Full article
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18 pages, 1542 KiB  
Article
A Comparison of the Effects of Several Foliar Forms of Magnesium Fertilization on ‘Superior Seedless’ (Vitis vinifera L.) in Saline Soils
by Sally F. Abo El-Ezz, Lo’ay A. A., Nadi Awad Al-Harbi, Salem Mesfir Al-Qahtani, Hitham M. Allam, Mohamed A. Abdein and Zinab A. Abdelgawad
Coatings 2022, 12(2), 201; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings12020201 - 03 Feb 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1955
Abstract
Magnesium (Mg) is the most essential element constituent in chlorophyll molecules that regulates photosynthesis processes. The physiological response of ‘Superior Seedless’ grapes was evaluated under different foliar magnesium fertilization such as sulfate magnesium (MgSO4·7 H2O), magnesium disodium EDTA (Mg-EDTA), [...] Read more.
Magnesium (Mg) is the most essential element constituent in chlorophyll molecules that regulates photosynthesis processes. The physiological response of ‘Superior Seedless’ grapes was evaluated under different foliar magnesium fertilization such as sulfate magnesium (MgSO4·7 H2O), magnesium disodium EDTA (Mg-EDTA), and magnesium nanoparticles (Mg-NPs) during the berry development stages (flowering, fruit set, veraison, and harvest). In general, the ‘Superior Seedless’ vine had a higher performance in photosynthesis with Mg-NPs application than other forms. The Fy/Fm ratio declined rapidly after the fruit set stage; then, it decreased gradually up until the harvesting stage. However, both MgSO4 and Mg-EDTA forms showed slight differences in Fv/Fm ratio during the berry development stages. The outcomes of this research suggest that the Fv/Fm ratio during the growth season of the ‘Superior Seedless’ vine may be a good tool to assess magnesium fertilization effects before visible deficiency symptoms appear. Mg-NPs are more effective at improving ‘Superior Seedless’ berry development than the other magnesium forms. These findings suggest that applying foliar Mg-NPs to vines grown on salinity-sandy soil alleviates the potential Mg deficiency in ‘Superior Seedless’ vines and improves bunches quality. Full article
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18 pages, 3534 KiB  
Article
The Effects of Several Metal Nanoparticles on Seed Germination and Seedling Growth: A Meta-Analysis
by Huanhuan Guo, Yong Liu, Jidai Chen, Yan Zhu and Zihan Zhang
Coatings 2022, 12(2), 183; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings12020183 - 31 Jan 2022
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2936
Abstract
Using the proper means to improve seed germination is of great significance in agriculture and forestry. Here, a meta-analysis was used to examine whether metal nanoparticle treatments have a specific effect on the seed germination and seedling growth of agricultural species. Using the [...] Read more.
Using the proper means to improve seed germination is of great significance in agriculture and forestry. Here, a meta-analysis was used to examine whether metal nanoparticle treatments have a specific effect on the seed germination and seedling growth of agricultural species. Using the Web of Science (1950–2021), PubMed (1950–2021), and Scopus (1950–2021) databases, a paper search was conducted using the following items (“nanoparticles” and “seed germination”, “nanomaterials” and “seed germination”) to filter the references in the title, abstract, and keywords of the published articles. The results indicated that nanoparticle (NP) treatments had a significantly positive effect on the final germination percentage (FGP), with a mean difference (MD) (that is, the overall effect) of 1.97 (0.96, 2.98) for the silver (Ag)-NP subgroup, 1.21 (0.34, 2.09) for the other-NP subgroup, 1.40 (0.88, 1.92) for the total based on the NP types, 1.47 (0.85, 2.09) for the “Concentrations: <50 mg/L” subgroup, and 1.40 (0.88, 1.92) for the total based on the NP concentrations. Similarly, root length (RL) was positively and significantly affected by NP treatment, with an MD (95% CI) of 0.92 (0.76, 1.09) for the zinc (Zn)-NP subgroup, 0.79 (0.65, 0.92) for the other-NP subgroup, 0.82 (0.72, 0.93) for the total based on the NP types, 0.90 (0.77, 1.04) for the “Concentrations: ≤50 mg/L” subgroup, 0.80 (0.60, 0.99) for the “Concentrations: >50 mg/L” subgroup, and 0.82 (0.72, 0.93) for the total based on the NP concentrations. However, there was no statistical correlation between the nanoparticle concentrations and shoot length (SL), due to the inclusion of zero in the 95% CI of the overall effect. Therefore, Ag-NPs could increase the FGP more than other-NPs, while Zn-NPs enhanced RL more. Moreover, NPs at lower concentrations could improve the FGP and RL of crop species to a larger extent than NPs at higher concentrations. This meta-analysis can provide a reference for the nanoparticle treatment technology utilization in agricultural and forest seeds. Full article
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11 pages, 4210 KiB  
Article
Effect of Copper Nanoparticles and Ions on Epididymis and Spermatozoa Viability of Chinese Soft-Shelled Turtles Pelodiscus sinensis
by Li Yang, Yating Wei, Shuai Gao, Qifei Wang, Jiaqi Chen, Boping Tang and Xunguang Bian
Coatings 2022, 12(2), 110; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings12020110 - 19 Jan 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1553
Abstract
Copper nanoparticles (CuNPs) have been widely used in various industrial and commercial applications, which become a potential threat to aquatic organisms. Nevertheless, their potential toxicity to the epididymis and sperm remains little known. In this study, we evaluated the effect of CuNPs and [...] Read more.
Copper nanoparticles (CuNPs) have been widely used in various industrial and commercial applications, which become a potential threat to aquatic organisms. Nevertheless, their potential toxicity to the epididymis and sperm remains little known. In this study, we evaluated the effect of CuNPs and copper ions (CuSO4) on the spermatozoa viability, epididymal structure, antioxidant enzyme activity, and inflammatory cytokines in cauda epididymis of the Chinese soft-shelled turtle. Results showed that the spermatozoa viability of Chinese soft-shelled turtles decreased significantly with an increase in CuNPs or Cu ions concentrations. The epithelial cells of the epididymal duct of the Chinese soft-shelled turtles with the treatment of 5 mg kg−1 CuNPs were slightly swollen, and the connective tissue between the epididymal ducts was loose. The epithelial structure of the epididymal tube was severely damaged with an increase in Cu ion concentrations. Compared to the control, the antioxidative enzymes activities and the expression of IL-1β, TNF-α, and IL-6 mRNA in the epididymis significantly increased with the treatment of CuNPs or CuSO4. The present study revealed that Cu ions exert more harmful effect on the epididymis and spermatozoa viability of Chinese soft-shelled turtles than copper nanoparticles. Full article
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15 pages, 4372 KiB  
Article
β-Cyclodextrin-Modified Mesoporous Silica Nanoparticles with Photo-Responsive Gatekeepers for Controlled Release of Hexaconazole
by Hua Pan, Wenjing Li, Litao Wu, Weilan Huang and Fang Zhang
Coatings 2021, 11(12), 1489; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings11121489 - 02 Dec 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2924
Abstract
In the present research, photo-responsive controlled-release hexaconazole (Hex) nanoparticles (Nps) were successfully prepared with azobenzene (Azo)-modified bimodal mesoporous silica (BMMs), in which β-cyclodextrin (β-CD) was capped onto the BMMs-Azo surface via host–guest interactions (Hex@BMMs/Azo/β-CD). Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) confirmed that the nanoparticles had [...] Read more.
In the present research, photo-responsive controlled-release hexaconazole (Hex) nanoparticles (Nps) were successfully prepared with azobenzene (Azo)-modified bimodal mesoporous silica (BMMs), in which β-cyclodextrin (β-CD) was capped onto the BMMs-Azo surface via host–guest interactions (Hex@BMMs/Azo/β-CD). Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) confirmed that the nanoparticles had a spherical structure, and their average diameter determined by dynamic light scattering (DLS) was found to be 387.2 ± 3.8 nm. X-ray powder-diffraction analysis and N2-adsorption measurements indicated that Hex was loaded into the pores of the mesoporous structure, but the structure of the mesoporous composite was not destroyed. The loading capacity of Hex@BMMs/Azo/β-CD nanoparticles for Hex was approximately 27.3%. Elemental components of the nanoparticles were characterized by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and electron dispersive spectroscopy (EDS). Ultraviolet–visible-light (UV–Vis) absorption spectroscopy tests showed that the azophenyl group in BMMs-Azo undergoes effective and reversible cis-trans isomerization under UV–Vis irradiation. Hex@BMMs/Azo/β-CD Nps exhibited excellent light-sensitive controlled-release performance. The release of Hex was much higher under UV irradiation than that in the dark, which could be demonstrated by the bioactivity test. The nanoparticles also displayed excellent pH-responsive properties, and the sustained-release curves were described by the Ritger–Peppas release kinetic model. BMMs nanocarriers had good biological safety and provided a basis for the development of sustainable agriculture in the future. Full article
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11 pages, 1390 KiB  
Article
Synergic Effect of Microorganism and Colloidal Biochar-Based Organic Fertilizer on the Growth and Fruit Quality of Tomato
by Shiguo Gu, Fei Lian, Hanyue Yang, Yaru Han, Wei Zhang, Fan Yang and Jie Gao
Coatings 2021, 11(12), 1453; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings11121453 - 26 Nov 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1929
Abstract
It is well known that carbon-based organic fertilizer can effectively promote crop growth and improve nutrient utilization efficiency. However, little is known about the effect of microorganisms on the nutrient availability of carbon-based organic fertilizer. To elucidate the contribution of microorganisms to the [...] Read more.
It is well known that carbon-based organic fertilizer can effectively promote crop growth and improve nutrient utilization efficiency. However, little is known about the effect of microorganisms on the nutrient availability of carbon-based organic fertilizer. To elucidate the contribution of microorganisms to the agricultural benefit of colloidal biochar-based fertilizer, a 5-month pot experiment was conducted to study the effect of different combinations of Methyltrophic bacillus, colloidal biochar, and organic fertilizer on physical–chemical properties of soil, plant growth, physiological-biochemical reactions, yield, and quality of tomato. The results show that the addition of Methyltrophic bacillus effectively promoted the availability of soil nutrients (such as nitrate nitrogen and available potassium) and increased soil cation exchange capacity; meanwhile, it significantly increased the content of chlorophyll-a (9.42–27.41%) and promoted the net photosynthetic rate (10.86–13.73%) and biomass of tomato fruit (17.84–26.33%). The contents of lycopene, vitamin C, total sugar, and soluble sugar in the fruits treated by the ternary combination of Methyltrophic bacillus, colloidal biochar, and organic fertilizer increased by 58.40%, 46.53%, 29.45%, and 26.65%, respectively. The above results demonstrate that the addition of beneficial microorganisms could further improve the performance of biochar-based fertilizer on plant growth, yield, and fruit quality of tomato. This information provides evidence for the promising performance of microorganism-supported biochar organic fertilizer in agricultural applications. Full article
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Review

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25 pages, 2464 KiB  
Review
Current Progress and Open Challenges for Combined Toxic Effects of Manufactured Nano-Sized Objects (MNO’s) on Soil Biota and Microbial Community
by Bismillah Mubeen, Ammarah Hasnain, Jie Wang, Hanxian Zheng, Syed Atif Hasan Naqvi, Ram Prasad, Ateeq ur Rehman, Muhammad Amir Sohail, Muhammad Zeeshan Hassan, Muhammad Farhan, Muhammad Altaf Khan and Mahmoud Moustafa
Coatings 2023, 13(1), 212; https://doi.org/10.3390/coatings13010212 - 16 Jan 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2529
Abstract
Soil is a porous matrix containing organic matter and minerals as well as living organisms that vary physically, geographically, and temporally. Plants choose a particular microbiome from a pool of soil microorganisms which helps them grow and stay healthy. Many ecosystem functions in [...] Read more.
Soil is a porous matrix containing organic matter and minerals as well as living organisms that vary physically, geographically, and temporally. Plants choose a particular microbiome from a pool of soil microorganisms which helps them grow and stay healthy. Many ecosystem functions in agrosystems are provided by soil microbes just like the ecosystem of soil, the completion of cyclic activity of vital nutrients like C, N, S, and P is carried out by soil microorganisms. Soil microorganisms affect carbon nanotubes (CNTs), nanoparticles (NPs), and a nanopesticide; these are called manufactured nano-objects (MNOs), that are added to the environment intentionally or reach the soil in the form of contaminants of nanomaterials. It is critical to assess the influence of MNOs on important plant-microbe symbiosis including mycorrhiza, which are critical for the health, function, and sustainability of both natural and agricultural ecosystems. Toxic compounds are released into rural and urban ecosystems as a result of anthropogenic contamination from industrial processes, agricultural practices, and consumer products. Once discharged, these pollutants travel through the atmosphere and water, settling in matrices like sediments and groundwater, potentially rendering broad areas uninhabitable. With the rapid growth of nanotechnology, the application of manufactured nano-objects in the form of nano-agrochemicals has expanded for their greater potential or their appearance in products of users, raising worries about possible eco-toxicological impacts. MNOs are added throughout the life cycle and are accumulated not only in the soils but also in other components of the environment causing mostly negative impacts on soil biota and processes. MNOs interfere with soil physicochemical qualities as well as microbial metabolic activity in rhizospheric soils. This review examines the harmful effect of MNOs on soil, as well as the pathways used by microbes to deal with MNOs and the fate and behavior of NPs inside the soils. Full article
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