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A review on the interactions between engineered nanoparticles with extracellular and intracellular polymeric substances from wastewater treatment aggregates

Huangfu, Xiaoliu, Xu, Yanghui, Liu, Caihong, He, Qiang, Ma, Jun, Ma, Chengxue, Huang, Ruixing
Chemosphere 2019 v.219 pp. 766-783
adsorption, bacteria, biofilm, dissolved oxygen, humic acids, ionic strength, metals, nanoparticles, nucleic acids, oxidation, oxides, pH, polymers, polysaccharides, proteins, redox potential, sewage treatment, sludge, wastewater treatment
Engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) will inevitably enter wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) due to their widespread application; thus, it is necessary to study the migration and transformation of nanoparticles in sewage treatment systems. Extracellular polymeric substances (EPSs) such as polysaccharides, proteins, nucleic acids, humic acids and other polymers are polymers released by microorganisms under certain conditions. Intracellular polymeric substances (IPSs) are microbial substances contained in the body with compositions similar to those of extracellular polymers. In this review, we summarize the characteristics of EPSs and IPSs from sewage-collecting microbial aggregates containing pure bacteria, activated sludge, granular sludge and biofilms. We also further investigate the dissolution, adsorption, aggregation, deposition, oxidation and other chemical transformation processes of nanoparticles, such as metals, metal oxides, and nonmetallic oxides. In particular, the review deeply analyzes the migration and transformation mechanisms of nanoparticles in EPS and IPS matrices, including physical, chemical, biological interactions mechanisms. Moreover, various factors, such as ionic strength, ionic valence, pH, light, oxidation-reduction potential and dissolved oxygen, influencing the interaction mechanisms are discussed. In recent years, studies on the interactions between EPSs/IPSs and nanoparticles have gradually increased, but the mechanisms of these interactions are seldom explored. Therefore, developing a systematic understanding of the migration and transformation mechanisms of ENPs is significant.