In vitro toxicity assessment of three hydroxylated fullerenes in human skin cells

Carbon fullerenes possess unique properties and their interactions with bio molecules have widespread applications. Functionalisation of fullerenes with hydroxyl groups (fullerenols) can increase the solubility and potential for cellular interaction, but the health and safety effects of varying degrees of fullerene hydroxylation in biological systems is poorly understood. Existing reports regarding the toxicity and inflammatory potential of fullerenols give conflicting conclusions. To further elucidate the potential for toxicity of fullerenols, human epidermal keratinocytes (HEK) were exposed to fullerenols (low (C60(OH)20), medium (C60(OH)24), and high (C60(OH)32)) at concentrations ranging from 0.000544-42.5 íg/mL for 24 and 48 h. A statistically significant decrease in viability with alamar Blue (aB) was noted only with C60(OH)32 at 42.5 íg/mL after 24 h. Nanoparticle (NP) controls showed minimal NP/assay interference of the three fullerenols with the aB viability assay. Normalised IL-8 concentration for C60(OH)20 was not significantly different from control, while C60(OH)24 and C60(OH)32 showed a significant decrease at 24 and 48 h. These results suggest that different hydroxylation of fullerenes caused no cytotoxicity or inflammation up to 8.55 íg/mL. These findings suggest that extrapolation across similar NP will be dependent upon surface chem. and concentration which may affect the degree of agglomeration and thus biological effects.

Authors: Saathoff J.G.; Inman A.O.; Xia X.R.; Riviere J.E.; Monteiro-Riviere N.A. ;Full Source: Toxicology In Vitro [online computer file] 2011, 25(8), 2105-2112 (Eng) ;