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Honolulu, HI, United States, 2006/08/14 - A new study by Swedish researchers shows that gold nano spheres activate human antigen presenting dendritic cells (DCs) to induce proliferation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC)..
The study shows that gold nano spheres with a diameter of 7 nm, produced in a conventional laboratory surrounding, activate human antigen presenting dendritic cells (DCs) to induce proliferation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC), mixed with either allergenic or autologous DCs. This effect was found to be due to endotoxin (lipopolysaccharide, LPS) contamination of the nanoparticles. When particles were produced in a controlled way eliminating endotoxin contamination, the activation of the DCs did not take place.
Dr. Susanne Gabrielsson from the Clinical Allergy Research Unit at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, explained these findings to Nanowerk: "Pure gold nanoparticles do not affect the "sentinels of the immune system" – DCs. Thus, our results support the suitability of gold nanoparticles as inert carriers for use in biomedical applications. Our findings also emphasize the importance of combining knowledge within materials science with that of biomedicine when generating new advanced materials, to avoid misinterpretation of results."
"At present, nanoscience focuses mainly on the search for new materials and techniques, and safety and biomolecular aspects are often postponed for future studies" says Gabrielsson." Contaminants, such as LPS, as found in our study, may lead to erroneous conclusions that cause developers to abandon what might be a promising material. If LPS or other adjuvants are to be used, they need to be applied in a controlled manner. "
In a new paper, titled "The Importance of an Endotoxin-Free Environment during the Production of Nanoparticles Used in Medical Applications" Gabrielsson, together with first author Helen Vallhov and colleagues from Stockholm University and the Royal Institute of Technology, explain the problem of LPS contamination of nano particles and describe ways to reduce contamination.
Read the full article on the Nanowerk website.
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By Michael Berger, Copyright 2006 Nanowerk LLC