A comparison of acute and long-term effects of industrial multiwalled carbon nanotubes on human lung and immune cells in vitro

Thurnherr, Tina; Brandenberger, Christina; Fischer, Kathrin; Diener, Liliane; Manser, Pius; Maeder-Althaus, Xenia; Kaiser, Jean-Pierre; Krug, Harald F; Rothen-Rutishauser, Barbara; Wick, Peter (2011). A comparison of acute and long-term effects of industrial multiwalled carbon nanotubes on human lung and immune cells in vitro. Toxicology letters, 200(3), pp. 176-86. Amsterdam: Elsevier 10.1016/j.toxlet.2010.11.012

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The close resemblance of carbon nanotubes to asbestos fibers regarding their high aspect ratio, biopersistence and reactivity increases public concerns on the widespread use of these materials. The purpose of this study was not only to address the acute adverse effects of industrially produced multiwalled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) on human lung and immune cells in vitro but also to further understand if their accumulation and biopersistence leads to long-term consequences or induces adaptive changes in these cells. In contrast to asbestos fibers, pristine MWCNTs did not induce overt cell death in A549 lung epithelial cells and Jurkat T lymphocytes after acute exposure to high doses of this material (up to 30 g/ml). Nevertheless, very high levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and decreased metabolic activity were observed which might affect long-term viability of these cells. However, the continuous presence of low amounts of MWCNTs (0.5 g/ml) for 6 months did not have major adverse long-term effects although large amounts of nanotubes accumulated at least in A549 cells. Moreover, MWCNTs did not appear to induce adaptive mechanisms against particle stress in long-term treated A549 cells. Our study demonstrates that despite the high potential for ROS formation, pristine MWCNTs can accumulate and persist within cells without having major long-term consequences or inducing adaptive mechanisms.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Gastro-intestinal, Liver and Lung Disorders (DMLL) > Clinic of Pneumology

UniBE Contributor:

Rothen-Rutishauser, Barbara

ISSN:

0378-4274

Publisher:

Elsevier

Language:

English

Submitter:

Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:09

Last Modified:

04 May 2014 23:04

Publisher DOI:

10.1016/j.toxlet.2010.11.012

PubMed ID:

21112381

Web of Science ID:

000287216900007

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/1037 (FactScience: 201733)

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