As revealed here via cytotoxicity assays, both PAMAM-coated and citrate-coated AuNps induced cytotoxicity in HepG2 cells or PBMC. A decrease
in cell viability upon incubation with AuNps-citrate and AuNps-PAMAM for both HepG2 and PBMC has been observed using the MTT assay. A change in morphology of HepG2 cells upon AuNps treatment also indicated the toxicity effects (data not shown). The genotoxicity assays employed here, as shown in Table 2 (HepG2 cells) and Table 3 (PBMC), can be related to the nanometric dimensions of AuNps, which may undergo cell uptake (Lewinski et al., 2008). It was evidenced that AuNps-PAMAM and AuNps-citrate induced DNA damage, as an indicative of genotoxicity. This effect is related to the cellular toxicity of gold nanoparticles, LY2835219 chemical structure which in our case is also related to the small size of the particles that easily undergo cell uptake through diffusion, in agreement with Pernodet et al. (2006). Li et al. (2008) demonstrated that serum coated 20 nm AuNps were also able to induce genotoxicity in the form of single-strand this website lesions in DNA in human lung fibroblasts. Our analyses provided convincing evidence of the toxic effect of AuNps, indicating that surface charge or size may be a major determinant of how AuNps impact cellular processes. Furthermore, the DNA damage index for AuNps-PAMAM
and AuNps-Citrate was statistically significant analyzed for HepG2 cells, except at 1.0 μM AuNps-Citrate. The genotoxicity for PBMC was statistically significant only upon incubation with AuNps-PAMAM at 50.0 μM. The tendency of the AuNps to accumulate in the cells nuclei was associated with their small size, which allows the nanoparticles to freely diffuse through pore complex (Zhao
and Nalwa, 2007). Since the comet assay evaluates the reversible DNA damage, our genotoxicity results also suggest that PBMC, a primary cell culture, were less sensitive to DNA damage to a certain extent the nanoparticles than HepG2 cancer cells. The purpose was to analyze the repair system in comet assay evidencing the DNA repair. The use of SSC parameter obtained via flow cytometry has been see more proposed as an efficient way to investigate cell uptake (Suzuki et al., 2007). In our analyses, the uptake of both types of AuNps was monitored by SSC (Table 4), revealing that for HepG2 cells, the relative SSC values were significantly increased (p < 0.05) only for cells incubated with AuNps-PAMAM at 50.0 μM. In contrast, the PBMC exhibited an increase in the SSC values for cells incubated with both types of nanoparticles at 50.0 μM. Furthermore, a significantly increase in SSC was also observed for PBMC upon incubation with AuNps-PAMAM at the lower concentration investigated (1.0 μM).