PVP-coated silver nanoparticles and silver ions induce reactive oxygen species, apoptosis and necrosis in THP-1 monocytes

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  • Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Center
  • Institute of Environmental and Occupational Medicine
  • The Department og Pulmunary Medicine
The objective of the present study was to investigate the toxicity of silver nanoparticles (Ag NPs) in vitro. Silver ions (Ag+) have been used in medical treatments for decades whereas Ag NPs have been used in a variety of consumer products within recent years. This study was undertaken to compare the effect of well characterized, PVP-coated Ag NPs (69 nm ± 3 nm) and Ag+ in a human monocytic cell line (THP-1). Characterization of the Ag NPs was conducted in both stock suspension and cell media with or without serum and antibiotics. By using the flowcytometric annexin V/propidium iodide (PI) assay, both Ag NPs and Ag+ were shown to induce apoptosis and necrosis in THP-1 cells depending on dose and exposure time. Furthermore, the presence of apoptosis could be confirmed by the TUNEL method. A number of studies have implicated the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in cytotoxicity mediated by NPs. We used the fluorogenic probe, 2′,7′-dichlorofluorescein to assess the levels of intracellular ROS during exposure to Ag NPs and Ag+. A drastic increase in ROS levels could be detected after 6–24 h suggesting that oxidative stress is an important mediator of cytotoxicity caused by Ag NPs and Ag+.
Original languageEnglish
JournalToxicology Letters
Volume190
Issue2
Pages (from-to)156-162
Number of pages7
ISSN0378-4274
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 28 Oct 2009

    Research areas

  • silver, nanoparticles, apoptosis, reactive oxygen species, monocytes

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