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The effects of magnetite (Fe3O4) nanoparticles on electroporation-induced inward currents in pituitary tumor (GH3) cells and in RAW 264.7 macrophages

Authors Liu YC, Wu PC, Shieh DB, Wu SN

Received 3 December 2011

Accepted for publication 2 February 2012

Published 27 March 2012 Volume 2012:7 Pages 1687—1696


Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Yen-Chin Liu1, Ping-Ching Wu2, Dar-Bin Shieh2–5, Sheng-Nan Wu3,6,7

1Department of Anesthesiology, 2Institute of Oral Medicine and Department of Stomatology, 3Department of Physiology, National Cheng Kung University Hospital, College of Medicine, 4Advanced Optoelectronic Technology Center, 5Center for Micro/Nano Science and Technology, National Cheng Kung University, 6Innovation Center for Advanced Medical Device Technology, National Cheng Kung University, 7Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, National Cheng Kung University Medical College, Tainan, Taiwan

Aims: Fe3O4 nanoparticles (NPs) have been known to provide a distinct image contrast effect for magnetic resonance imaging owing to their super paramagnetic properties on local magnetic fields. However, the possible effects of these NPs on membrane ion currents that concurrently induce local magnetic field perturbation remain unclear.
Methods: We evaluated whether amine surface-modified Fe3O4 NPs have any effect on ion currents in pituitary tumor (GH3) cells via voltage clamp methods.
Results: The addition of Fe3O4 NPs decreases the amplitude of membrane electroporation-induced currents (IMEP) with a half-maximal inhibitory concentration at 45 µg/mL. Fe3O4 NPs at a concentration of 3 mg/mL produced a biphasic response in the amplitude of IMEP, ie, an initial decrease followed by a sustained increase. A similar effect was also noted in RAW 264.7 macrophages.
Conclusion: The modulation of magnetic electroporation-induced currents by Fe3O4 NPs constitutes an important approach for cell tracking under various imaging modalities or facilitated drug delivery.

Keywords: iron oxide, ion current, free radical

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