Send to

Choose Destination
J BUON. 2019 Jan-Feb;24(1):338-346.

The influence of nano-TiO2 on metabolic activity, cytotoxicity and ABCB5 mRNA expression in WM-266-4 human metastatic melanoma cell line.

Author information

University Medical Centre Maribor, Maribor, Slovenia.



There is no clear evidence on whether sunscreens and personal care products containing UV-filters like titanium dioxide (TiO2) are protective against or may be a contributing factor in melanoma development. Extensive studies have shown that TiO2 can cause cell toxicity under in vitro and in vivo conditions. The transmembrane protein ABCB5 is closely linked to tumorigenicity, progression and disease recurrence of diverse human malignancies, including melanoma. Accordingly, the aim of the present study was to investigate in vitro any potential influence of nanosized TiO2 (nano-TiO2) on metastatic melanoma cells' metabolic activity, cytotoxicity and ABCB5 mRNA expression.


The human metastatic melanoma cell line WM-266-4 (ATCC) was used to obtain dose- and time-dependent responses. We used the MTT and LDH assays to measure metabolic activity of selected cells and cytotoxicity. Real-time quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) was performed and gene expression ratios were calculated for the target (ABCB5) and the reference (LDHA) gene. Standard statistical tests were used for analysis in SPSS and Excell.


Our results suggest decreased metastatic melanoma cells' metabolic activity, increased cytotoxicity and increased ABCB5 mRNA expression after 24 and 48 hrs as compared to control (untreated) cells (p<0.05). Thus, we showed that nano-TiO2 might influence cells' invasiveness and aggressiveness.


We show for the first time that ABCB5 expression in metastatic melanoma cells might be affected by nano-TiO2 exposure. In addition, nano-TiO2 as a sunscreen ingredient might play a role in metastatic melanoma progression.


Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center