A network perspective reveals decreasing material diversity in studies on nanoparticle interactions with dissolved organic matter

Abstract : Dissolved organic matter (DOM) strongly influences the properties and fate of engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) in aquatic environments. There is an extensive body of experiments on interactions between DOM and ENPs and also larger particles. [We denote particles on the nano-and micrometer scale as particulate matter (PM).] However, the experimental results are very heterogeneous, and a general mechanistic understanding of DOM-PM interactions is still missing. In this situation, recent reviews have called to expand the range of DOM and ENPs studied. Therefore, our work focuses on the diversity of the DOM and PM types investigated. Because the experimental results reported in the literature are highly disparate and difficult to structure, a new format of organizing, visualizing, and interpreting the results is needed. To this end, we perform a network analysis of 951 experimental results on DOM-PM interactions, which enabled us to analyze and quantify the diversity of the materials investigated. The diversity of the DOM-PM combinations studied has mostly been decreasing over the last 25 y, which is driven by an increasing focus on several frequently investigated materials, such as DOM isolated from fresh water, DOM in whole-water samples, and TiO2 and silver PM. Furthermore, there is an underrepresentation of studies into the effect of particle coating on PM-DOM interactions. Finally, it is of great importance that the properties of DOM used in experiments with PM, in particular the molecular weight and the content of aromatic and aliphatic carbon, are reported more comprehensively and systematically.
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Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America , National Academy of Sciences, 2017, 114 (10), pp.E1756-E1765. 〈10.1073/pnas.1608106114〉
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Nicole Sani-Kast, Jérôme Labille, Patrick Ollivier, Danielle Slomberg, Konrad Hungerbühler, et al.. A network perspective reveals decreasing material diversity in studies on nanoparticle interactions with dissolved organic matter. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America , National Academy of Sciences, 2017, 114 (10), pp.E1756-E1765. 〈10.1073/pnas.1608106114〉. 〈hal-01519532〉

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