DNA Damage Following Pulmonary Exposure by Instillation to Low Doses of Carbon Black (Printex 90) Nanoparticles in Mice

Zdenka O. Kyjovska, Nicklas R. Jacobsen, Anne T. Saber, Stefan Bengtson, Petra Jackson, Håkan Wallin, Ulla Birgitte Vogel

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    We previously observed genotoxic effects of carbon black nanoparticles at low doses relative to the Danish Occupational Exposure Limit (3.5 mg/m3). Furthermore, DNA damage occurred in broncho-alveolar lavage (BAL) cells in the absence of inflammation, indicating that inflammation is not required for the genotoxic effects of carbon black. In this study, we investigated inflammatory and acute phase response in addition to genotoxic effects occurring following exposure to nanoparticulate carbon black (NPCB) at even lower doses. C57BL/6JBomTac mice were examined 1, 3, and 28 days after a single instillation of 0.67, 2, 6, and 162 mu g Printex 90 NPCB and vehicle. Cellular composition and protein concentration was evaluated in BAL fluid as markers of inflammatory response and cell damage. DNA strand breaks in BAL cells, lung, and liver tissue were assessed using the alkaline comet assay. The pulmonary acute phase response was analyzed by Saa3 mRNA real-time quantitative PCR. Instillation of the low doses of NPCB induced a slight neutrophil influx one day after exposure. Pulmonary exposure to small doses of NPCB caused an increase in DNA strand breaks in BAL cells and lung tissue measured using the comet assay. We interpret the increased DNA strand breaks occurring following these low exposure doses of NPCB as DNA damage caused by primary genotoxicity in the absence of substantial inflammation, cell damage, and acute phase response. Environ. Mol. Mutagen. 56:41-49, 2015. (c) 2014 The Authors. Environmental and Molecular Mutagenesis published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc. on behalf of Environmental Mutagen Society
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalEnvironmental and Molecular Mutagenesis
    Issue number1
    Pages (from-to)41-49
    Number of pages9
    Publication statusPublished - 2015


    • nanoparticles
    • lung inflammation
    • genotoxicity
    • comet assay


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