Samples of the moss Pleurozium schreberi were subjected to the nano-ZnO suspension under various conditions and the distribution of the accumulated zinc in their thalli was determined. To assess the presence of the accumulated zinc on the surface of the plant, in the extracellular and intracellular space as well as in the residual fraction, sequential elution technique using distilled water, NiCl2 solution, HNO3 followed by a total decomposition in acid mix was used. Data were then analysed using multiple Analysis of variance in order to identify the most important factors affecting the accumulation and distribution of Zn in the plant. Among all the applied treatments – washing x not washing, irrigation x no irrigation and oven drying x exsiccation at the ambient temperature – washing and irrigation prior to the exposure affected the Zn distribution the most. At the same time, some of the treatments may have been detrimental to the integrity of the moss cells and, hence, alter the observed distribution of Zn in the samples. In terms of total Zn content accumulated in the moss thalli, not washing following by irrigation prior to the exposure is hereby recommended for biomonitoring studies.Keywords: moss, ZnO, nanoparticles, accumulation, sequential elution
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