[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
Toxicity testing the rapidly growing number of nanomaterials requires large scale use of in vitro systems under the presumption that these systems are sufficiently predictive or descriptive of responses in in vivo systems for effective use in hazard ranking. We hypothesized that improved relationships between in vitro and in vivo models of experimental toxicology for nanomaterials would result from placing response data in vitro and in vivo on the same dose scale, the amount of material associated with cells.Methods
Balb/c mice were exposed nose-only to an aerosol (68.6 nm CMD, 19.9 mg/m3, 4 hours) generated from of 12.8 nm superparamagnetic iron oxide particles (SPIO). Target cell doses were calculated, histological evaluations conducted, and biomarkers of response were identified by global transcriptomics. Representative murine epithelial and macrophage cell types were exposed in vitro to the same material in liquid suspension for four hours and levels of nanoparticle regulated cytokine transcripts identified in vivo were quantified as a function of measured nanoparticle cellular dose.ResultsTarget tissue doses of 0.009-0.4 ¿g SPIO/cm2 in lung led to an inflammatory response in the alveolar region characterized by interstitial inflammation and macrophage infiltration. In vitro, higher target tissue doses of ~1.2-4 ¿g SPIO/ cm2 of cells were required to induce transcriptional regulation of markers of inflammation, CXCL2 & CCL3, in C10 lung epithelial cells. Estimated in vivo macrophage SPIO nanoparticle doses ranged from 1-100 pg/cell, and induction of inflammatory markers was observed in vitro in macrophages at doses of 8-35 pg/cell.Conclusions
Application of target tissue dosimetry revealed good correspondence between target cell doses triggering inflammatory processes in vitro and in vivo in the alveolar macrophage population, but not in the epithelial cells of the alveolar region. These findings demonstrate the potential for target tissue dosimetry to enable the more quantitative comparison of in vitro and in vivo systems and advance their use for hazard assessment and extrapolation to humans. The mildly inflammogentic cellular doses experienced by mice were similar to those calculated for humans exposed to the same material at the existing permissible exposure limit of 10 mg/m3 iron oxide (as Fe).
Particle and Fibre Toxicology 09/2014; 11(1):46. · 6.99 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: S-glutathionylation (SSG) is an important regulatory posttranslational modification on protein cysteine (Cys) thiols, yet the role of specific cysteine residues as targets of modification is poorly understood. We report a novel quantitative mass spectrometry (MS)-based proteomic method for site-specific identification and quantification of S-glutathionylation across different conditions. Briefly, this approach consists of initial blocking of free thiols by alkylation, selective reduction of glutathionylated thiols and covalent capture of reduced thiols using thiol affinity resins, followed by on-resin tryptic digestion and isobaric labeling with iTRAQ (isobaric tags for relative and absolute quantitation) for MS-based identification and quantification. The overall approach was initially validated by application to RAW 264.7 mouse macrophages treated with different doses of diamide to induce glutathionylation. A total of 1071 Cys-sites from 690 proteins were identified in response to diamide treatment, with ∼90% of the sites displaying >2-fold increases in SSG-modification compared to controls. This approach was extended to identify potential SSG- modified Cys-sites in response to H2O2, an endogenous oxidant produced by activated macrophages and many pathophysiological stimuli. The results revealed 364 Cys-sites from 265 proteins that were sensitive to S-glutathionylation in response to H2O2 treatment, thus providing a database of proteins and Cys-sites susceptible to this modification under oxidative stress. Functional analysis revealed that the most significantly enriched molecular function categories for proteins sensitive to SSG modifications were free radical scavenging and cell death/survival. Overall the results demonstrate that our approach is effective for site-specific identification and quantification of SSG-modified proteins. The analytical strategy also provides a unique approach to determining the major pathways and cellular processes most susceptible to S-glutathionylation under stress conditions.
Free Radical Biology and Medicine 12/2013; · 5.27 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Abstract Spontaneous agglomeration of engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) is a common problem in cell culture media which can confound interpretation of in vitro nanotoxicity studies. We created stable agglomerates of iron oxide nanoparticles (IONPs) in conventional culture medium, which varied in hydrodynamic size (276 nm - 1.5 μm) but were composed of identical primary particles with similar surface potentials and protein coatings. Studies using C10 lung epithelial cells show that the dose rate effects of agglomeration can be substantial, varying by over an order of magnitude difference in cellular dose in some cases. Quantification by magnetic particle detection showed that small agglomerates of carboxylated IONPs induced greater cytotoxicity and redox-regulated gene expression when compared to large agglomerates on an equivalent total cellular IONP mass dose basis, whereas agglomerates of amine-modified IONPs failed to induce cytotoxicity or redox-regulated gene expression despite delivery of similar cellular doses. Dosimetry modeling and experimental measurements reveal that on a delivered surface area basis, large and small agglomerates of carboxylated IONPs have similar inherent potency for the generation of ROS, induction of stress-related genes, and eventual cytotoxicity. The results suggest that reactive moieties on the agglomerate surface are more efficient in catalyzing cellular ROS production than molecules buried within the agglomerate core. Because of the dynamic, size and density dependent nature of ENP delivery to cells in vitro the biological consequences of agglomeration are not discernible from static measures of exposure concentration (μg/ml) alone, highlighting the central importance of integrated physical characterization and quantitative dosimetry for in vitro studies. The combined experimental and computational approach provides a quantitative framework for evaluating relationships between the biocompatibility of nanoparticles and their physical and chemical characteristics.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Although the potential human health impacts from exposure to engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) are uncertain, past epidemiological studies have established correlations between exposure to ambient air pollution particulates and the incidence of pneumonia and lung infections. Using amorphous silica and superparamagnetic iron oxide (SPIO) as model high production volume ENPs, we examined how macrophage activation by bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS) or the lung pathogen Streptococcus pneumoniae is altered by ENP pre-treatment. Neither silica nor SPIO treatment elicited direct cytotoxic or pro-inflammatory effects in bone marrow-derived macrophages. However, pre-treatment of macrophages with SPIO caused extensive reprogramming of nearly 500 genes regulated in response to LPS challenge, hallmarked by exaggerated activation of oxidative stress response pathways and suppressed activation of both pro- and anti-inflammatory pathways. Silica pre-treatment altered regulation of only 67 genes, but there was strong correlation with gene sets affected by SPIO. Macrophages exposed to SPIO displayed a phenotype suggesting an impaired ability to transition from a M1 to M2-like activation state, characterized by suppressed IL-10 induction, enhanced TNF production, and diminished phagocytic activity toward S. pneumoniae. Studies in macrophages deficient in scavenger receptor A (SR-A) showed SR-A participates in cell uptake of both the ENPs and S. pneumonia, and co-regulates the anti-inflammatory IL-10 pathway. Thus, mechanisms for dysregulation of innate immunity exist by virtue that common receptor recognition pathways are used by some ENPs and pathogenic bacteria, although the extent of transcriptional reprogramming of macrophage function depends on the physicochemical properties of the ENP after internalization. Our results also illustrate that biological effects of ENPs may be indirectly manifested only after challenging normal cell function. Nanotoxicology screening strategies should therefore consider how exposure to these materials alters susceptibility to other environmental exposures.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In-vitro tests intended for evaluating the potential health effects of magnetic nanoparticles generally require an accurate measure of cell dose to promote the consistent use and interpretation of biological response. Here, a simple low-cost inductive sensor is developed for quickly determining the total mass of magnetic nanoparticles that is bound to the plasma membrane and internalized by cultured cells. Sensor operation exploits an oscillating magnetic field (f(0)=250kHz) together with the nonlinear response of particle magnetization to generate a harmonic signal (f(3)=750kHz) that varies linearly with particulate mass (R(2)>0.999) and is sufficiently sensitive for detecting ∼100ng of carboxyl-coated iron-oxide nanoparticles in under a second. When exploited for measuring receptor-mediated nanoparticle uptake in RAW 264.7 macrophages, results show that the achieved dosimetric performance is comparable with relatively expensive analytical techniques that are much more time-consuming and labor-intensive to perform. The described sensing is therefore potentially better suited for low-cost in-vitro assays that require fast and quantitative magnetic particle detection.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Increasingly, it is recognized that understanding and predicting nanoparticle behavior is often limited by the degree to which the particles can be reliably produced and adequately characterized. Two examples that demonstrate how sample preparation methods and processing history may significantly impact particle behavior are: 1) an examination of cerium oxide (ceria) particles reported in the literature in relation to the biological responses observed and 2) observations related that influence synthesis and aging of ceria nanoparticles. Examining data from the literature for ceria nanoparticles suggests that thermal history is one factor that has a strong influence on biological impact. Thermal processing may alter many physicochemical properties of the particles, including density, crystal structure, and the presence of surface contamination. However, these properties may not be sufficiently recorded or reported to determine the ultimate source of an observed impact. A second example shows the types of difficulties that can be encountered in efforts to apply a well-studied synthesis route to producing well-defined particles for biological studies. These examples and others further highlight the importance of characterizing particles thoroughly and recording details of particle processing and history that too often are underreported.
Surface and Interface Analysis 08/2012; 44(5):882-889. · 1.39 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To understand how integration of multiple data types can help decipher cellular responses at the systems level, we analyzed the mitogenic response of human mammary epithelial cells to epidermal growth factor (EGF) using whole genome microarrays, mass spectrometry-based proteomics and large-scale western blots with over 1000 antibodies. A time course analysis revealed significant differences in the expression of 3172 genes and 596 proteins, including protein phosphorylation changes measured by western blot. Integration of these disparate data types showed that each contributed qualitatively different components to the observed cell response to EGF and that varying degrees of concordance in gene expression and protein abundance measurements could be linked to specific biological processes. Networks inferred from individual data types were relatively limited, whereas networks derived from the integrated data recapitulated the known major cellular responses to EGF and exhibited more highly connected signaling nodes than networks derived from any individual dataset. While cell cycle regulatory pathways were altered as anticipated, we found the most robust response to mitogenic concentrations of EGF was induction of matrix metalloprotease cascades, highlighting the importance of the EGFR system as a regulator of the extracellular environment. These results demonstrate the value of integrating multiple levels of biological information to more accurately reconstruct networks of cellular response.
PLoS ONE 03/2012; 7(3):e34515. · 3.53 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Nanoparticle biological activity, biocompatibility and fate can be directly affected by layers of readily adsorbed host proteins in biofluids. Here, we report a study on the interactions between human blood plasma proteins and nanoparticles with a controlled systematic variation of properties using 18O-labeling and LC-MS-based quantitative proteomics. We developed a novel protocol to both simplify isolation of nanoparticle bound proteins and improve reproducibility. LC-MS analysis identified and quantified 88 human plasma proteins associated with polystyrene nanoparticles consisting of three different surface chemistries and two sizes, as well as, for four different exposure times (for a total of 24 different samples). Quantitative comparison of relative protein abundances was achieved by spiking an 18O-labeled “universal” reference into each individually processed unlabeled sample as an internal standard, enabling simultaneous application of both label-free and isotopic labeling quantification across the entire sample set. Clustering analysis of the quantitative proteomics data resulted in distinctive patterns that classified the nanoparticles based on their surface properties and size. In addition, temporal data indicated that the formation of the stable protein corona was at equilibrium within 5 min. The comprehensive quantitative proteomics results obtained in this study provide rich data for computational modeling and have potential implications towards predicting nanoparticle biocompatibility.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The cellular uptake of engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) is known to involve active transport mechanisms, yet the biological molecules involved are poorly understood. We demonstrate that the uptake of amorphous silica ENPs by macrophage cells, and the secretion of proinflammatory cytokines, is strongly inhibited by silencing expression of scavenger receptor A (SR-A). Conversely, ENP uptake is augmented by introducing SR-A expression into human cells that are normally non-phagocytic. Confocal microscopy analyses show that the majority of single or small clusters of silica ENPs co-localize with SR-A and are internalized through a pathway characteristic of clathrin-dependent endocytosis. In contrast, larger silica ENP agglomerates (>500 nm) are poorly co-localized with the receptor, suggesting that the physical agglomeration state of an ENP influences its cellular trafficking. As SR-A is expressed in macrophages throughout the reticulo-endothelial system, this pathway is likely an important determinant of the biological response to ENPs.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We have investigated macrophage activation using computational analyses of a compendium of transcriptomic data covering responses to agonists of the TLR pathway, Salmonella infection, and manufactured amorphous silica nanoparticle exposure. We inferred regulatory relationship networks using this compendium and discovered that genes with high betweenness centrality, so-called bottlenecks, code for proteins targeted by pathogens. Furthermore, combining a novel set of bioinformatics tools, topological analysis with analysis of differentially expressed genes under the different stimuli, we identified a conserved core response module that is differentially expressed in response to all studied conditions. This module occupies a highly central position in the inferred network and is also enriched in genes preferentially targeted by pathogens. The module includes cytokines, interferon induced genes such as Ifit1 and 2, effectors of inflammation, Cox1 and Oas1 and Oasl2, and transcription factors including AP1, Egr1 and 2 and Mafb. Predictive modeling using a reverse-engineering approach reveals dynamic differences between the responses to each stimulus and predicts the regulatory influences directing this module. We speculate that this module may be an early checkpoint for progression to apoptosis and/or inflammation during macrophage activation.
PLoS ONE 02/2011; 6(2):e14673. · 3.53 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This paper explores some of the fundamental and practical issues related to the behavior of nanoparticles in the environment and their potential impacts on human health. In our research we have explored the reactive behaviors of nanoparticles with contaminants in the environment, how nanoparticle change in response to their environment and time, and how nanoparticles interact with biological systems of various types. It has become apparent that researchers often underestimate the difficulties of preparing and delivering well characterized nanoparticles for specific types of testing or applications. Difficulties arise in areas that range from not understanding what imparts the “nano” character of a particle to not knowing the impacts of minor species on the properties of high surface area materials. Some of our adventures and misadventures serve as examples of some of these issues as they relate to providing well defined particles for biological studies.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The difficulty of directly measuring cellular dose is a significant obstacle to application of target tissue dosimetry for nanoparticle and microparticle toxicity assessment, particularly for in vitro systems. As a consequence, the target tissue paradigm for dosimetry and hazard assessment of nanoparticles has largely been ignored in favor of using metrics of exposure (e.g. μg particle/mL culture medium, particle surface area/mL, particle number/mL). We have developed a computational model of solution particokinetics (sedimentation, diffusion) and dosimetry for non-interacting spherical particles and their agglomerates in monolayer cell culture systems. Particle transport to cells is calculated by simultaneous solution of Stokes Law (sedimentation) and the Stokes-Einstein equation (diffusion).
The In vitro Sedimentation, Diffusion and Dosimetry model (ISDD) was tested against measured transport rates or cellular doses for multiple sizes of polystyrene spheres (20-1100 nm), 35 nm amorphous silica, and large agglomerates of 30 nm iron oxide particles. Overall, without adjusting any parameters, model predicted cellular doses were in close agreement with the experimental data, differing from as little as 5% to as much as three-fold, but in most cases approximately two-fold, within the limits of the accuracy of the measurement systems. Applying the model, we generalize the effects of particle size, particle density, agglomeration state and agglomerate characteristics on target cell dosimetry in vitro.
Our results confirm our hypothesis that for liquid-based in vitro systems, the dose-rates and target cell doses for all particles are not equal; they can vary significantly, in direct contrast to the assumption of dose-equivalency implicit in the use of mass-based media concentrations as metrics of exposure for dose-response assessment. The difference between equivalent nominal media concentration exposures on a μg/mL basis and target cell doses on a particle surface area or number basis can be as high as three to six orders of magnitude. As a consequence, in vitro hazard assessments utilizing mass-based exposure metrics have inherently high errors where particle number or surface areas target cells doses are believed to drive response. The gold standard for particle dosimetry for in vitro nanotoxicology studies should be direct experimental measurement of the cellular content of the studied particle. However, where such measurements are impractical, unfeasible, and before such measurements become common, particle dosimetry models such as ISDD provide a valuable, immediately useful alternative, and eventually, an adjunct to such measurements.
Particle and Fibre Toxicology 01/2010; 7(1):36. · 6.99 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Concerns about the potential adverse health effects of engineered nanoparticles stems in part from the possibility that some materials display unique chemical and physical properties at nanoscales which could exacerbate their biological activity. However, studies that have assessed the effect of particle size across a comprehensive set of biological responses have not been reported. Using a macrophage cell model, we demonstrate that the ability of unopsonized amorphous silica particles to stimulate inflammatory protein secretion and induce macrophage cytotoxicity scales closely with the total administered particle surface area across a wide range of particle diameters (7-500 nm). Whole genome microarray analysis of the early gene expression changes induced by 10- and 500-nm particles showed that the magnitude of change for the majority of genes affected correlated more tightly with particle surface area than either particle mass or number. Gene expression changes that were particle size-specific were also identified. However, the overall biological processes represented by all gene expression changes were nearly identical, irrespective of particle diameter. Direct comparison of the cell processes represented in the 10- and 500-nm particle gene sets using gene set enrichment analysis revealed that among 1009 total biological processes, none were statistically enriched in one particle size group over the other. The key mechanisms involved in silica nanoparticle-mediated gene regulation and cytotoxicity have yet to be established. However, our results suggest that on an equivalent nominal surface area basis, common biological modes of action are expected for nano- and supranano-sized silica particles.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Modern transcriptomics and proteomics enable us to survey the expression of RNAs and proteins at large scales. While these data are usually generated and analyzed separately, there is an increasing interest in comparing and co-analyzing transcriptome and proteome expression data. A major open question is whether transcriptome and proteome expression is linked and how it is coordinated.
Here we have developed a probabilistic clustering model that permits analysis of the links between transcriptomic and proteomic profiles in a sensible and flexible manner. Our coupled mixture model defines a prior probability distribution over the component to which a protein profile should be assigned conditioned on which component the associated mRNA profile belongs to. We apply this approach to a large dataset of quantitative transcriptomic and proteomic expression data obtained from a human breast epithelial cell line (HMEC). The results reveal a complex relationship between transcriptome and proteome with most mRNA clusters linked to at least two protein clusters, and vice versa. A more detailed analysis incorporating information on gene function from the Gene Ontology database shows that a high correlation of mRNA and protein expression is limited to the components of some molecular machines, such as the ribosome, cell adhesion complexes and the TCP-1 chaperonin involved in protein folding.
Matlab code is available from the authors on request.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Extracellular proteins released by mammary epithelial cells are critical mediators of cell communication, proliferation, and organization, yet the actual spectrum of proteins released by any given cell (the secretome) is poorly characterized. To define the set of proteins secreted by human mammary epithelial cells (HMEC), we combined analytical and computational approaches to define a secretome protein set based upon probable biological significance. Analysis of HMEC-conditioned medium by liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry resulted in identification of 889 unique proteins, of which 151 were found to be specifically enriched in the extracellular compartment when compared with a database of proteins expressed in whole HMEC lysates. Additional high mass accuracy analysis revealed 36 proteins whose extracellular abundance increased after treatment with phorbol ester (PMA), a protein kinase C agonist and general secretagogue. Many of the PMA stimulated proteins have been reported to be aberrantly expressed in human cancers and appear to be coregulated as multigene clusters. By inhibiting PMA-mediated transactivation of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), a pathway critically required for normal HMEC function, we found that the secretion of specific matrix metalloproteases was also coordinately regulated through EGFR transactivation. This study demonstrates a tiered strategy by which extracellular proteins can be identified and progressively assigned to classes of increasing confidence and regulatory importance.
Journal of Proteome Research 03/2008; 7(2):558-69. · 5.00 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The rapid growth in the use of in vitro methods for nanoparticle toxicity assessment has proceeded with limited consideration of the unique kinetics of these materials in solution. Particles in general and nanoparticles specifically, diffuse, settle, and agglomerate in cell culture media as a function of systemic and particle properties: media density and viscosity and particle size, shape, charge and density, for example. Cellular dose then is also a function of these factors as they determine the rate of transport of nanoparticles to cells in culture. Here we develop and apply the principles of dosimetry in vitro and outline an approach for simulation of nanoparticle particokinetics in cell culture systems. We illustrate that where equal mass concentrations (mug/ml) imply equal doses for dissimilar materials, the corresponding particle number or surface area concentration doses differ by orders of magnitude. More importantly, when rates of diffusional and gravitational particle delivery are accounted for, trends and magnitude of the cellular dose as a function of particle size and density differ significantly from those implied by "concentration" doses. For example, 15-nm silver nanoparticles appear approximately 4000 times more potent than micron-sized cadmium oxide particles on a cm(2)/ml media basis, but are only approximately 50 times more potent when differences in delivery to adherent cells are considered. We conclude that simple surrogates of dose can cause significant misinterpretation of response and uptake data for nanoparticles in vitro. Incorporating particokinetics and principles of dosimetry would significantly improve the basis for nanoparticle toxicity assessment, increasing the predictive power and scalability of such assays.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The functioning of even a simple biological system is much more complicated than the sum of its genes, proteins and metabolites. A premise of systems biology is that molecular profiling will facilitate the discovery and characterization of important disease pathways. However, as multiple levels of effector pathway regulation appear to be the norm rather than the exception, a significant challenge presented by high-throughput genomics and proteomics technologies is the extraction of the biological implications of complex data. Thus, integration of heterogeneous types of data generated from diverse global technology platforms represents the first challenge in developing the necessary foundational databases needed for predictive modelling of cell and tissue responses. Given the apparent difficulty in defining the correspondence between gene expression and protein abundance measured in several systems to date, how do we make sense of these data and design the next experiment? In this review, we highlight current approaches and challenges associated with integration and analysis of heterogeneous data sets, focusing on global analysis obtained from high-throughput technologies.
Briefings in Functional Genomics and Proteomics 01/2007; 5(4):261-72.