Time-Dependent Subcellular Distribution and Effects of Carbon Nanotubes in Lungs of Mice

Carsten Købler, Sarah S. Poulsen, Anne T. Saber, Nicklas R. Jacobsen, Hakan Wallin, Carole L. Yauk, Sabina Halappanavar, Ulla Birgitte Vogel, Klaus Qvortrup, Kristian Mølhave

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    Abstract

    Background and Methods
    Pulmonary deposited carbon nanotubes (CNTs) are cleared very slowly from the lung, but there is limited information on how CNTs interact with the lung tissue over time. To address this, three different multiwalled CNTs were intratracheally instilled into female C57BL/6 mice: one short (850 nm) and tangled, and two longer (4 mu m and 5.7 mu m) and thicker. We assessed the cellular interaction with these CNTs using transmission electron microscopy (TEM) 1, 3 and 28 days after instillation.
    Results
    TEM analysis revealed that the three CNTs followed the same overall progression pattern over time. Initially, CNTs were taken up either by a diffusion mechanism or via endocytosis. Then CNTs were agglomerated in vesicles in macrophages. Lastly, at 28 days post-exposure, evidence suggesting CNT escape from vesicle enclosures were found. The longer and thicker CNTs more often perturbed and escaped vesicular enclosures in macrophages compared to the smaller CNTs. Bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) showed that the CNT exposure induced both an eosinophil influx and also eosinophilic crystalline pneumonia.
    Conclusion
    Two very different types of multiwalled CNTs had very similar pattern of cellular interactions in lung tissue, with the longer and thicker CNTs resulting inmore severe effects in terms of eosinophil influx and incidence of eosinophilic crystalline pneumonia (ECP).
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalPLOS ONE
    Volume10
    Issue number1
    Number of pages17
    ISSN1932-6203
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

    Bibliographical note

    © 2015 Købler et al.
    This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License

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