DNA Oxidative Damage as a Sensitive Genetic Endpoint to Detect the Genotoxicity Induced by Titanium Dioxide Nanoparticles


The genotoxicity of nanomaterials has attracted great attention in recent years. As a possible occupational carcinogen, the genotoxic effects and underlying mechanisms of titanium dioxide nanoparticles (TiO2 NPs) have been of particular concern. In this study, the effect of TiO2 NPs (0, 25, 50 and 100 µg/mL) on DNA damage and the role of oxidative stress were investigated using human bronchial epithelial cells (BEAS-2B) as an in vitro model. After detailed characterization, the cytotoxicity of TiO2 NPs was detected. Through transmission electron microscopy (TEM), we found that TiO2 NPs entered the cytoplasm but did not penetrate deep into the nucleus of cells. The intracellular levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) significantly increased in a dose-dependent manner and the ratios of GSH/GSSG also significantly decreased. The results of the normal comet assay were negative, while the Fpg-modified comet assay that specifically detected DNA oxidative damage was positive. Meanwhile, N-acetyl-L-cysteine (NAC) intervention inhibited the oxidative stress and genotoxicity induced by TiO2 NPs. Therefore, it was suggested that TiO2 NPs could induce cytotoxicity, oxidative stress and DNA oxidative damage in BEAS-2B cells. DNA oxidative damage may be a more sensitive genetic endpoint to detect the genotoxicity of TiO2 NPs.

Authors: Zhangjian Chen, Jiaqi Shi, Yi Zhang, Shuo Han, Jiahe Zhang, Guang Jia
; Full Source: Nanomaterials (Basel, Switzerland) 2022 Jul 29;12(15):2616. doi: 10.3390/nano12152616.