Nanomaterials: What Are They, Why They Cause Ecotoxicity, and How This Can Be Dealt With?

  • Mahendra RaiEmail author
  • Indarchand Gupta
  • Avinash P. Ingle
  • Jayanta Kumar Biswas
  • Olga V. Sinitsyna


Nanomaterials have been benefiting human by their wide applications in different fields. Till date, many types of natural and engineered nanomaterials have been reported. Each of them has specific characteristics, which are helpful in deciding their use for particular application. Although they are beneficial to the human beings, there is probability of their harmful effects on the ecosystem. After the desired use of the nanomaterials, they are routinely disposed of into the environment either intentionally or unintentionally. This scenario can create the harmful environment for the whole ecosystem. The ecotoxicity of nanomaterials is an imperative point to be considered for the safety of flora and fauna. Hence, with argument on their characteristics and applications, their safety for human and environment should also be considered. Therefore, the present chapter introduces the nanomaterials, encompasses the discussion on major types of nanomaterials, which are being available naturally and others that are synthesized artificially. The parameters which make nanoparticles harmful to ecosystem have also been discussed. Moreover, the special emphasis is given on how the scientific community can deal the situation to avoid the harmful effects of nanoparticles so that it can be beneficial to mankind without causing any damage to ecosystem.


Nanoparticles Engineered nanomaterials Toxic effects Ecotoxicity 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mahendra Rai
    • 1
    Email author
  • Indarchand Gupta
    • 2
  • Avinash P. Ingle
    • 3
  • Jayanta Kumar Biswas
    • 4
  • Olga V. Sinitsyna
    • 5
  1. 1.Nanobiotechnology Laboratory, Department of BiotechnologySGB Amravati UniversityAmravatiIndia
  2. 2.Department of BiotechnologyGovernment Institute of ScienceAurangabadIndia
  3. 3.Department of Biotechnology, Engineering School of LorenaUniversity of Sao PauloLorenaBrazil
  4. 4.Enviromicrobiology, Ecotoxicology and Ecotechnology Research Unit, Department of Ecological StudiesUniversity of KalyaniKalyani, NadiaIndia
  5. 5.Laboratory for Physical Chemistry of PolymersA. N. Nesmeyanov Institute of Organoelement Compounds of Russian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia

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