[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A simple method for the synthesis of lipophilic Ag NPs have been developed. The coated Ag NPs have been entrapped into a FDA-approved and targetable PEG-based polymeric nanoparticles, and this nanocarrier has been conjugated with the peptide chlorotoxin. Uptake experiments have shown a cell-specific recognition of the Ag-1-PNPs-Cltx on U87MG cell lines in comparison to Balb/3T3. The uptake of Ag into the cells was quantified and an interesting cytotoxic effect (IC50 = 45 μM) has been found on glioblastoma cell lines.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Abstract In this work we investigated the toxicological effects of nude and chemically functionalised (-NH(2), -OH and -COOH groups) multiwall carbon nanotubes (mwCNTs) using immortalised mouse fibroblasts cell line (Balb/3T3) as in vitro model, alternative to the use of animals, to assess basal cytotoxicity, carcinogenic potential, genotoxicity and cell interaction of nanomaterials (NM). Combining in vitro tests such as cell transformation assay and micronucleus with physicochemical and topological analysis, we obtained results showing no cytotoxicity and genotoxicity. Carcinogenic potential and mwCNTs interaction with cells were instead evident. We stressed the importance that different toxicological end points have to be considered when studying NM, therefore, assays able to detect long-term effects, such as carcinogenicity, must be taken into account together with a panel of tests able to detect more immediate effects like basal cytotoxicity or genotoxicity.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Magnetite nanoparticles (Fe3O4 NPs) are manufactured nanomaterials increasingly used in healthcare for different medical applications ranging from diagnosis to therapy. This study deals with the irradiation of Fe3O4 NPs with a proton beam in order to produce 56Co as radiolabel and also with the possible use of nuclear techniques for the quantification of Fe3O4 NPs in biological systems. Particular attention has been focused on the size distribution (in the range of 100 nm) and the surface charge of the NPs characterizing them before and after the irradiation process in order to verify if these essential properties would be preserved during irradiation. Moreover, X-ray diffraction studies have been performed on radioactive and non-radioactive NPs, to assess if major changes in NPs structure might occur due to thermal and/or radiation effects. The radiation emitted from the radiolabels has been used to quantify the cellular uptake of the NPs in in vitro studies. As for the biological applications two cell lines have been selected: immortalized mouse fibroblast cell line (Balb/3T3) and human epithelial colorectal adenocarcinoma cell line (Caco-2). The cell uptake has been quantified by radioactivity measurements of the 56Co radioisotope performed with high resolution γ-ray spectrometry equipment. This study has showed that, under well-established irradiation conditions, Fe3O4 NPs do not undergo significant structural modifications and thus the obtained results are in line with the uptake studies carried out with the same non-radioactive nanomaterials (NMs). Therefore, the radiolabelling method can be fruitfully applied to uptake studies because of the low-level exposure where higher sensitivity is required.
Journal of Nanoparticle Research 12/2011; 13:6707-6713. · 2.28 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The effect of the concentration of cobalt ferrite (CoFe(2)O(4)) nanoparticles (NPs) on their intracellular location and distribution has been explored by synchrotron radiation X-ray and fluorescence microscopy (SR-XRF) monitoring the evolution of NPs elemental composition as well. In cells exposed to low concentrations of CoFe(2)O(4) NPs, the NPs preferentially segregate in the perinuclear region preserving their initial chemical content. At concentrations exceeding 500 μM the XRF spectra indicate the presence of Co and Fe also in the nuclear region, accompanied by sensible changes in the cellular morphology. The increase of the Co/Fe ratio measured in the nuclear compartment indicates that above certain concentrations the CoFe(2)O(4) NPs intracellular distribution could be accompanied by biodegradation resulting in Co accumulation in the nucleus.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We present in this article an outline of some cyclotron-based irradiation techniques that can be used to directly radiolabel industrially manufactured nanoparticles, as well as two techniques for synthesis of labelled nanoparticles using cyclotron-generated radioactive precursor materials. These radiolabelled nanoparticles are suitable for a range of different in vitro and in vivo tracing studies of relevance to the field of nanotoxicology. A basic overview is given of the relevant physics of nuclear reactions regarding both ion-beam and neutron production of radioisotopes. The various issues that determine the practicality and usefulness of the different methods are discussed, including radioisotope yield, nuclear reaction kinetics, radiation and thermal damage, and radiolabel stability. Experimental details are presented regarding several techniques applied in our laboratories, including direct light-ion activation of dry nanoparticle samples, neutron activation of nanoparticles and suspensions using an ion-beam driven activator, spark-ignition generation of nanoparticle aerosols using activated electrode materials, and radiochemical synthesis of nanoparticles using cyclotron-produced isotopes. The application of these techniques is illustrated through short descriptions of some selected results thus far achieved. It is shown that these cyclotron-based methods offer a very useful range of options for nanoparticle radiolabelling despite some experimental difficulties associated with their application. For direct nanoparticle radiolabelling, if care is taken in choosing the experimental conditions applied, useful activity levels can be achieved in a wide range of nanoparticle types, without causing substantial thermal or radiation damage to the nanoparticle structure. Nanoparticle synthesis using radioactive precursors presents a different set of issues and offers a complementary and equally valid approach when laboratory generation of the nanoparticles is acceptable for the proposed studies, and where an appropriate radiolabel can be incorporated into the nanoparticles during synthesis.
Archives of Toxicology 07/2011; 85(7):751-73. · 5.08 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Different in vitro assays are successfully used to determine the relative cytotoxicity of a broad range of compounds. Nevertheless, different research groups have pointed out the difficulty in using the same tests to assess the toxicity of nanoparticles (NPs). In this study, we evaluated the possible use of a microphysiometer, Bionas 2500 analyzing system Bionas GmbH®, to detect in real time changes in cell metabolisms linked to NPs exposure. We focused our work on response changes of fibroblast cultures linked to exposure by cobalt ferrite NPs and compared the results to conventional in vitro assays. The measurements with the microphysiometer showed a cobalt ferrite cytotoxic effect, confirmed by the Colony Forming Efficiency assay. In conclusion, this work demonstrated that the measurement of metabolic parameters with a microphysiometer is a promising method to assess the toxicity of NPs and offers the advantage to follow on-line the cell metabolic changes.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Nowadays, a wide variety of nanoparticles (NPs) are applied in different fields such as medical science and industry. Due to their large commercial volume, the OECD Working Party on Manufactured Nanomaterials (NMs) has proposed to study a set of 14 nanomaterials, one of which being cerium oxide (CeO<sub>2</sub>). In particular, CeO<sub>2</sub> based NPs are widely used in automotive industry, healthcare, and cosmetics. In this paper, we propose a method for the production of radioactive CeO<sub>2</sub> NPs. We demonstrate that they maintain the same physicochemical characteristics as the “cold” ones in terms of size distribution and Zeta potential; we develop a new protocol to assess their cellular interaction in immortalized mouse fibroblast cell line Balb/3T3, a model for the study of basal cytotoxicity and carcinogenic potential induced by chemicals and in the present case by NPs. Experimental result of this work, which shows a quasi-linear concentration-uptake response of cells, can be useful as a reference dose-uptake curve for explaining effects following biological uptake after exposure to CeO<sub>2</sub> NPs.
IEEE Transactions on NanoBioscience 04/2011; · 1.77 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Nanotechnology is an emerging field that involves the development, manufacture and measurement of materials and systems in the submicron to nanometer range. Its development is expected to have a large socio-economical impact in practically all fields of industrial activity. However, there is still a lack of information about the potential risks of manufactured nanoparticles for the environment and for human health. In this work, we studied the cytotoxicity, genotoxicity and morphological transforming activity of cobalt nanoparticles (Co-nano) and cobalt ions (Co(2+)) in Balb/3T3 cells. We also evaluated Co-nano dissolution in culture medium and cellular uptake of both Co-nano and Co(2+). Our results indicated dose-dependent cytotoxicity, assessed by colony-forming efficiency test, for both compounds. The toxicity was higher for Co-nano than for Co(2) after 2 and 24 h of exposure, while dose-effect relationships were overlapping after 72 h. Statistically significant results were observed for Co-nano with the micronucleus test and the comet assay, while for Co(2+) positive results were observed only with the latter. In addition, even when Co-nano was genotoxic (at >1 microM), no evident dose-dependent effect was observed. Concerning morphological transformation, we found a statistically significant increase in the formation of type III foci (morphologically transformed colonies) only for Co-nano. Furthermore, we observed a higher cellular uptake of Co-nano compared with Co(2+).