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Use of N-acetylcysteine in remediation of silver nanoparticles-contaminated soil: toxicokinetics and toxicodynamics approach on Enchytraeus crypticus

Grant number: 18/24658-9
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Post-doctor
Effective date (Start): March 30, 2019
Effective date (End): June 29, 2019
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Pharmacology
Principal Investigator:Marcelo Bispo de Jesus
Grantee:Monique Culturato Padilha Mendonça
Supervisor abroad: Cornelis Adrianus Maria Van Gestel
Home Institution: Instituto de Biologia (IB). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Local de pesquisa : University Amsterdam (VU), Netherlands  
Associated to the scholarship:16/03765-6 - In vitro and in vivo determination of toxicological profile of nanoformulations, BP.PD


The widespread production and use of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) in consumer and medical products have raised environmental and human health concerns. Once in the environment, the soil is major sinks of AgNPs, and invertebrates are directly exposed to this compound. Currently, there is no effective soil remediation able to prevent or reduce the potential negative effects of silver contamination on living organisms. In previous studies, we have demonstrated that thiol-containing compounds (e.g., N-acetylcysteine (NAC) and reduced glutathione (GSH)) can reverse the toxic effects of AgNPs in the soil invertebrate Enchytraeus crypticus and in the vertebrate Rattus norvegicus (Wistar rats). However, the mechanism of action remains still an open question. In order to advance in the understanding about how these compounds act on the recovery of animals exposed to AgNP-contaminated soil, we are applying for three months leave to be spent in the laboratory of Prof. Cornelis A. M. van Gestel. Prof. van Gestel has extensive experience in standard soil species and toxicokinetics-toxicodynamics models. It is worth mentioning that the long-term goal of this project is to implement the use of E. crypticus in nanoecotoxicological studies, as well as an alternative organism to be applied in toxicological screening tests of new drugs/nanoparticles at our Brazilian laboratory, thus enabling the continuity of this research within the Department of Biochemistry and Tissue Biology, UNICAMP.