Nano Archive

Oops they did it again! Carbon nanotubes hoax scientists in viability assays

Worle-Knirsch, JM and Pulskamp, K and Krug, HF (2006) Oops they did it again! Carbon nanotubes hoax scientists in viability assays. NANO LETTERS, 6 (6). pp. 1261-1268.

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New materials of emerging technological importance are single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs). Because SWCNTs will be used in commercial products in huge amounts, their effects on human health and the environment have been addressed in several studies. Inhalation studies in vivo and submerse applications in vitro have been described with diverging results. Why some indicate a strong cytotoxicity and some do not is what we report on here. Data from A549 cells incubated with carbon nanotubes fake a strong cytotoxic effect within the MTT assay after 24 h that reaches roughly 50%, whereas the same treatment with SWCNTs, but detection with WST-1, reveals no cytotoxicity. LDH, FACS-assisted mitochondrial membrane potential determination, and Annexin-V/PI staining also reveal no cytotocicity. SWCNTs appear to interact with some tetrazolium salts such as MTT but not with others (such as WST-1, INT, XTT). This interference does not seem to affect the enzymatic reaction but lies rather in the insoluble nature of MTT-formazan. Our findings strongly suggest verifying cytotoxicity data with at least two or more independent test systems for this new class of materials (nanomaterials). Moreover, we intensely recommend standardizing nanotoxicological assays with regard to the material used: there is a clear need for reference materials. MTT-formazan crystals formed in the MTT reaction are lumped with nanotubes and offer a potential mechanism to guide bioremediation and clearance for SWCNTs from ``contaminated'' tissue. SWCNTs are good supporting materials for tissue growth, as attachment of focal adhesions and connections to the cytoskeleton suggest.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Singlewalled nanotube ; Mechanical properties ; Tribology ; Adhesion ; Growth mechanism ; Crystal form ; Reference material ; Experimental design ; Interference ; Cytotoxicity ; Nanostructured materials ; Carbon nanotubes ;
Subjects:Biomedical Science > Nanobiotechnology
Biomedical Science > Nanotechnology for human health
ID Code:2736
Deposited By:Lesley Tobin
Deposited On:20 Jan 2009 12:11
Last Modified:20 Jan 2009 12:11

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