Use of a modified Allium test with nano TiO2
Extensive production and wide application of TiO2 nanoparticles has stimulated research on its potential biological effects on different groups of organisms but the interaction of TiO2 nanoparticles with higher plants remains poorly understood. We have studied the effect of TiO2 nanoparticles on Allium cepa using a modification of the conventional Allium test with nanoparticles suspended in distilled water as opposed to growth medium. Nanoparticulate TiO2 was found to have low toxic potential and the mitotic index was among the most sensitive measures of the effect of nano-TiO2. We conclude that modified Allium test is suitable to provide comparative data on the biological potential of a variety of nanoparticles and could be used in a tiered approach to nanotoxicity testing.