Now showing 1 - 4 of 4
  • Publication
    A Three-Dimensional Cell Culture Platform for Long Time-Scale Observations of Bio-Nano Interactions
    We know surprisingly little about the long-term outcomes for nanomaterials interacting with organisms. To date, most of what we know is derived from in vivo studies that limit the range of materials studied and the scope of advanced molecular biology tools applied. Long-term in vitro nanoparticle studies are hampered by a lack of suitable models, as standard cell culture techniques present several drawbacks, while technical limitations render current three-dimensional (3D) cellular spheroid models less suited. Now, by controlling the kinetic processes of cell assembly and division in a non-Newtonian culture medium, we engineer reproducible cell clusters of controlled size and phenotype, leading to a convenient and flexible long-term 3D culture that allows nanoparticle studies over many weeks in an in vitro setting. We present applications of this model for the assessment of intracellular polymeric and silica nanoparticle persistence and found that hydrocarbon-based polymeric nanoparticles undergo no apparent degradation over long time periods with no obvious biological impact, while amorphous silica nanoparticles degrade at different rates over several weeks, depending on their synthesis method.
      423Scopus© Citations 6
  • Publication
    Ultrathin Silicon Membranes for in Situ Optical Analysis of Nanoparticle Translocation across a Human Blood-Brain Barrier Model
    Here we present a blood-brain barrier (BBB) model that enables high-resolution imaging of nanoparticle (NP) interactions with endothelial cells and the capture of rare NP translocation events. The enabling technology is an ultrathin silicon nitride (SiN) membrane (0.5 μm pore size, 20% porosity, 400 nm thickness) integrated into a dual-chamber platform that facilitates imaging at low working distances (∼50 μm). The platform, the μSiM-BBB (microfluidic silicon membrane-BBB), features human brain endothelial cells and primary astrocytes grown on opposite sides of the membrane. The human brain endothelial cells form tight junctions on the ultrathin membranes and exhibit a significantly higher resistance to FITC-dextran diffusion than commercial membranes. The enhanced optical properties of the SiN membrane allow high-resolution live-cell imaging of three types of NPs, namely, 40 nm PS-COOH, 100 nm PS-COOH, and apolipoprotein E-conjugated 100 nm SiO2, interacting with the BBB. Despite the excellent barrier properties of the endothelial layer, we are able to document rare NP translocation events of NPs localized to lysosomal compartments of astrocytes on the "brain side" of the device. Although the translocation is always low, our data suggest that size and targeting ligand are important parameters for NP translocation across the BBB. As a platform that enables the detection of rare transmission across tight BBB layers, the μSiM-BBB is an important tool for the design of nanoparticle-based delivery of drugs to the central nervous system.
      570Scopus© Citations 22
  • Publication
    Understanding intracellular nanoparticle trafficking fates through spatiotemporally resolved magnetic nanoparticle recovery
    The field of nanomedicine has the potential to be a game-changer in global health, with possible applications in prevention, diagnostics, and therapeutics. However, despite extensive research focus and funding, the forecasted explosion of novel nanomedicines is yet to materialize. We believe that clinical translation is ultimately hampered by a lack of understanding of how nanoparticles really interact with biological systems. When placed in a biological environment, nanoparticles adsorb a biomolecular layer that defines their biological identity. The challenge for bionanoscience is therefore to understand the evolution of the interactions of the nanoparticle–biomolecules complex as the nanoparticle is trafficked through the intracellular environment. However, to progress on this route, scientists face major challenges associated with isolation of specific intracellular compartments for analysis, complicated by the diversity of trafficking events happening simultaneously and the lack of synchronization between individual events. In this perspective article, we reflect on how magnetic nanoparticles can help to tackle some of these challenges as part of an overall workflow and act as a useful platform to investigate the bionano interactions within the cell that contribute to this nanoscale decision making. We discuss both established and emerging techniques for the magnetic extraction of nanoparticles and how they can potentially be used as tools to study the intracellular journey of nanomaterials inside the cell, and their potential to probe nanoscale decision-making events. We outline the inherent limitations of these techniques when investigating particular bio-nano interactions along with proposed strategies to improve both specificity and resolution. We conclude by describing how the integration of magnetic nanoparticle recovery with sophisticated analysis at the single-particle level could be applied to resolve key questions for this field in the future.
      105Scopus© Citations 3
  • Publication
    Differential Recognition of Nanoparticle Protein Corona and Modified Low-Density Lipoprotein by Macrophage Receptor with Collagenous Structure
    Key practical challenges such as understanding the immunological processes at the nanoscale and controlling the targeting and accumulation of nano-objects in vivo now further stimulate efforts to underpin phenomenological knowledge of the nanoscale with more mechanistic and molecular insight. Thus, the question as to what constitutes nanoscale biological identity continues to evolve. Certainly nanoparticles in contact with a complex biological milieu develop a biological identity, differing from the original nanomaterial, now referred to as the "biomolecular corona". However, this surface-adsorbed layer of biomolecules may in some circumstance lead to different forms of receptor-particle interactions not evident only from the identity of the surface-adsorbed biomolecules and hard to predict or detect by current physicochemical methods. Here we show that scavenger receptors may recognize complex as yet unidentified biomolecular surface layer motifs, even when no current physicochemical analysis is capable of doing so. For instance, fluorescently labeled SiO nanoparticles in a biological milieu are strongly recognized by the macrophage receptor with collagenous structure (MARCO) in even dense biological media (human serum) apparently using a form of binding with which most of the MARCO's known ligands (e.g., LPS, modified LDL) fail to compete. Such observations may suggest the need for a much stronger emphasis on nanoscale receptor-corona and other biomolecular interaction studies if one wishes to unravel how biomolecular recognition drives outcomes in the nanoscale biological domain. 2
      54Scopus© Citations 50