Toxicity of functional nano-micro zinc oxide tetrapods: Impact of cell culture conditions, cellular age and material properties

Heike Papavlassopoulos, Yogendra K. Mishra, Sören Kaps, Ingo Paulowicz, Ramzy Abdelaziz, Mady Elbahri, Edmund Maser, Rainer Adelung, Claudia Röhl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

82 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

With increasing production and applications of nanostructured zinc oxide, e.g., for biomedical and consumer products, the question of safety is getting more and more important. Different morphologies of zinc oxide structures have been synthesized and accordingly investigated. In this study, we have particularly focused on nano-micro ZnO tetrapods (ZnO-T), because their large scale fabrication has been made possible by a newly introduced flame transport synthesis approach which will probably lead to several new applications. Moreover, ZnO-T provide a completely different morphology then classical spherical ZnO nanoparticles. To get a better understanding of parameters that affect the interactions between ZnOT and mammalian cells, and thus their biocompatibility, we have examined the impact of cell culture conditions as well as of material properties on cytotoxicity. Our results demonstrate that the cell density of fibroblasts in culture along with their age, i.e., the number of preceding cell divisions, strongly affect the cytotoxic potency of ZnO-T. Concerning the material properties, the toxic potency of ZnO-T is found to be significantly lower than that of spherical ZnO nanoparticles. Furthermore, the morphology of the ZnO-T influenced cellular toxicity in contrast to surface charges modified by UV illumination or O2 treatment and to the material age. Finally, we have observed that direct contact between tetrapods and cells increases their toxicity compared to transwell culture models which allow only an indirect effect via released zinc ions. The results reveal several parameters that can be of importance for the assessment of ZnO-T toxicity in cell cultures and for particle development.

Original languageEnglish
Article number84983
Number of pages13
JournalPloS one
Volume9
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 Jan 2014
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • HUMAN DERMAL FIBROBLASTS
  • INDUCE OXIDATIVE STRESS
  • ZNO NANOPARTICLES
  • CANCER-CELLS
  • CONTACT INHIBITION
  • TIO2 NANOPARTICLES
  • ESCHERICHIA-COLI
  • APOPTOSIS
  • GROWTH
  • NANOMATERIALS

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