Disruption of zebrafish (Danio rerio) reproduction upon chronic exposure to TiO2 nanoparticles

Jiangxin Wang, Xiaoshan Zhu, Xuezhi Zhang, Zheng Zhao, Huan Liu, Rajani George, Norma Wilson-Rawls, Yung Chang, Yongsheng Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

156 Scopus citations


As common engineered nanomaterials, TiO2 nanoparticles (nTiO2) are usually perceived as non-toxic, and have already been widely used in many products and applications. Such a perception might have been shaped by some short-term studies that revealed no/low toxicity of nTiO2 to cells and eco-relevant organisms. However, given the ultimate release of nTiO2 into the aquatic environment, which can act as a sink for engineered nanoparticles, their long-term impact on the environment and human health is still a concern and deserves more research efforts. Here, for the first time, we demonstrate that chronic exposure of zebrafish to 0.1mgL-1 nTiO2, can significantly impair zebrafish reproduction. For instance, there was a 29.5% reduction in the cumulative number of zebrafish eggs after 13weeks of nTiO2 exposure. Thus, we provided timely information on indicating a serious risk of reproductive impairment of environments contaminated with low levels of nTiO2 on aquatic organisms, leading to alterations in population dynamics and aquatic ecosystem balance, and thus warrants a careful scrutiny on toxicity assessment of nTiO2, especially their long-term impact.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)461-467
Number of pages7
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2011


  • Acute toxicity
  • Bioaccumulation
  • Chronic toxicity
  • Microarry
  • Nanoparticles
  • Reproduction
  • TiO
  • Zebrafish

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Pollution
  • General Chemistry
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry


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