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Nanomedicine. 2011 Oct;7(5):588-94. doi: 10.1016/j.nano.2011.01.008. Epub 2011 Feb 26.

Polystyrene nanoparticle trafficking across MDCK-II.

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  • 1Will Rogers Institute Pulmonary Research Center, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California 90033, USA.


Polystyrene nanoparticles (PNP) cross rat alveolar epithelial cell monolayers via non-endocytic transcellular pathways. To evaluate epithelial cell type-specificity of PNP trafficking, we studied PNP flux across Madin Darby canine kidney cell II monolayers (MDCK-II). The effects of calcium chelation (EGTA), energy depletion (sodium azide (NaN(3)) or decreased temperature), and endocytosis inhibitors methyl-β-cyclodextrin (MBC), monodansylcadaverine and dynasore were determined. Amidine-modified PNP cross MDCK-II 500 times faster than carboxylate-modified PNP. PNP flux did not increase in the presence of EGTA. PNP flux at 4 °C and after treatment with NaN(3) decreased 75% and 80%, respectively. MBC exposure did not decrease PNP flux, whereas dansylcadaverine- or dynasore-treated MDCK-II exhibited ∼80% decreases in PNP flux. Confocal laser scanning microscopy revealed intracellular colocalization of PNP with clathrin heavy chain. These data indicate that PNP translocation across MDCK-II (1) occurs via clathrin-mediated endocytosis and (2) is dependent on PNP physicochemical properties. We conclude that uptake/trafficking of nanoparticles (NPs) into/across epithelia depends both on properties of the NPs and on the specific epithelial cell type.

Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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