Electronic platform for real-time multi-parametric analysis of cellular behavior post-exposure to single-walled carbon nanotubes.

Abstract

Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) implementation in a variety of biomedical applications from bioimaging, to controlled drug delivery and cellular-directed alignment for muscle myofiber fabrication, has raised awareness of their potential toxicity. Nanotubes structural aspects which resemble asbestos, as well as their ability to induce cyto and genotoxicity upon interaction with biological systems by generating reactive oxygen species or inducing membrane damage, just to name a few, have led to focused efforts aimed to assess associated risks prior their user implementation. In this study, we employed a non-invasive and real-time electric cell impedance sensing (ECIS) platform to monitor behavior of lung epithelial cells upon exposure to a library of SWCNTs with user-defined physico-chemical properties. Using the natural sensitivity of the cells, we evaluated SWCNT-induced cellular changes in relation to cell attachment, cell-cell interactions and cell viability respectively. Our methods have the potential to lead to the development of standardized assays for risk assessment of other nanomaterials as well as risk differentiation based on the nanomaterials surface chemistry, purity and agglomeration state.

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