Toxicity of Cerium Oxide Nanoparticles in Human Lung Cancer Cells


With the fast development of nanotechnology, the nanomaterials start to cause people's attention for potential toxic effect. In this paper, the cytotoxicity and oxidative stress caused by 20-nm cerium oxide (CeO2) nanoparticles in cultured human lung cancer cells was investigated. The sulforhodamine B method was employed to assess cell viability after exposure to 3.5, 10.5, and 23.3 μg/ml of CeO2 nanoparticles for 24, 48, and 72 h. Cell viability decreased significantly as a function of nanoparticle dose and exposure time. Indicators of oxidative stress and cytotoxicity, including total reactive oxygen species, glutathione, malondialdehyde, α-tocopherol, and lactate dehydrogenase, were quantitatively assessed. It is concluded from the results that free radicals generated by exposure to 3.5 to 23.3 μg/ml CeO2 nanoparticles produce significant oxidative stress in the cells, as reflected by reduced glutathione and α-tocopherol levels; the toxic effects of CeO2 nanoparticles are dose dependent and time dependent; elevated oxidative stress increases the production of malondialdehyde and lactate dehydrogenase, which are indicators of lipid peroxidation and cell membrane damage, respectively.


Biological Sciences

Second Department

Materials Science and Engineering

Third Department


Keywords and Phrases

Cerium Oxide (Ceo2); Cytotoxicity; Lung Cancer Cells (A549); Nanoparticles; Oxidative Stress; Alpha Tocopherol; Cerium; Free Radical; Glutathione; Lactate Dehydrogenase; Malonaldehyde; Reactive Oxygen Metabolite; Sulforhodamine B; Cancer Cell; Cell Membrane; Cell Viability; Controlled Study; Exposure; Human; Human Cell; Lipid Peroxidation; Materials; Membrane Damage; Nanotechnology; Quantitative Analysis; Alpha-Tocopherol; Cell Line, Tumor; Cell Membrane; Cell Survival; Cerium; Glutathione; Humans; L-Lactate Dehydrogenase; Lipid Peroxidation; Lung Neoplasms; Malondialdehyde; Reactive Oxygen Species

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)


Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version


File Type





© 2006 SAGE Publications Inc., All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Sep 2006