Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 26, Issue 26, pp 27470–27481 | Cite as

Genetic and systemic toxicity induced by silver and copper oxide nanoparticles, and their mixture in Clarias gariepinus (Burchell, 1822)

  • Olusegun I. Ogunsuyi
  • Opeoluwa M. Fadoju
  • Olubukola O. Akanni
  • Okunola A. Alabi
  • Chibuisi G. Alimba
  • Sebastien Cambier
  • Santhana Eswara
  • Arno C. Gutleb
  • Oluwatosin A. Adaramoye
  • Adekunle A. BakareEmail author
Research Article


Unanticipated increase in the use of silver (Ag) and copper oxide (CuO) nanoparticles (NPs) due to their antimicrobial properties is eliciting environmental health concern because of their coexistence in the aquatic environment. Therefore, we investigated the genetic and systemic toxicity of the individual NPs and their mixture (1:1) using the piscine micronucleus (MN) assay, haematological, histopathological (skin, gills and liver) and hepatic oxidative stress analyses [malondialdehyde (MDA), reduced glutathione (GSH), superoxide dismutase (SOD) and catalase (CAT)] in the African mud catfish, Clarias gariepinus. The fish were exposed to sublethal concentrations (6.25–100.00 mg/L) of each NP and their mixture for 28 days. Both NPs and their mixture induced significant (p < 0.05) increase in MN frequency and other nuclear abnormalities. There was significant decrease in haemoglobin concentration, red and white blood cell counts. Histopathological lesions observed include epidermal skin cells and gill lamellae hyperplasia and necrosis of hepatocytes. The levels of MDA, GSH and activities of SOD and CAT were impacted in C. gariepinus liver following the exposure to the NPs and their mixture. Interaction factor analysis of data indicates antagonistic genotoxicity and oxidative damage of the NPs mixture. These results suggest cytogenotoxic effects of Ag NPs, CuO NPs and their mixture via oxidative stress in Clarias gariepinus.


Clarias gariepinus Nanoparticles Cytogenotoxicity Haematology Histopathology Oxidative stress 



The authors would like to acknowledge the University of Ibadan Postgraduate College teaching and research assistantship award given to Olusegun I. Ogunsuyi. The cooperation between the institutions in Nigeria and Luxembourg was initiated at the “Meet the expert” initiative session during the Society of Toxicology (SOT) 2017 annual conference in Baltimore, USA. The authors would like to thank Jean-Luc Biagi from the electron microscopy platform (MRT, LIST, Luxembourg) for his valuable help on the acquisition of the SEM pictures.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Olusegun I. Ogunsuyi
    • 1
  • Opeoluwa M. Fadoju
    • 1
  • Olubukola O. Akanni
    • 2
  • Okunola A. Alabi
    • 3
  • Chibuisi G. Alimba
    • 1
  • Sebastien Cambier
    • 4
  • Santhana Eswara
    • 5
  • Arno C. Gutleb
    • 4
  • Oluwatosin A. Adaramoye
    • 2
  • Adekunle A. Bakare
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Cell Biology and Genetics Unit, Department of ZoologyUniversity of IbadanIbadanNigeria
  2. 2.Drug Metabolism and Toxicology Research Laboratory, Department of BiochemistryUniversity of IbadanIbadanNigeria
  3. 3.Department of BiologyFederal University of TechnologyAkureNigeria
  4. 4.Environmental Research and Innovation (ERIN) DepartmentLuxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST)BelvauxLuxembourg
  5. 5.Material Research and Technology (MRT) DepartmentLuxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST)BelvauxLuxembourg

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