The Effect of Penetratin and Silica Capping Agents on Silver Nanoparticle Cellular Uptake in a Caco-2 cell line
Understanding the biochemical pathway of nanoparticle uptake in human cells has important implications for nanomedicine and occupational health risk assessments. The mechanism of NP uptake in cells remains largely unknown, and studying the pathway of NPs may lead to improvements in nanotechnology and a better understanding of the risks involved with occupational exposure. The hypothesis was that silver nanoparticle uptake is dependent upon its capping agent. The goal was to evaluate the uptake kinetics of two different capping agents on AgNPs and the extent of NP uptake in a Caco-2 cell line. This was done by measuring and comparing the NP mass in the free media, adsorbed to the cell surface, and taken up into the cells. The Caco-2 cells were exposed to AgNPs for 24 hours, the NPs with penetratin and silica capping agents had an 11.54 and 0.97 mean percent of cellular uptake, respectively. AgNPs with a penetratin capping agent had a significantly greater amount of cellular uptake than AgNPs with a silica capping agent, which can be explained by the charge and hydrophobicity of the capping agent. This study is significant because this data helps to understand the kinetics and extent of AgNP uptake in human colorectal adenocarcinoma cells. If we are able to learn the pathway of NPs in cells, then this information can be applied to develop new cancer treatments involving nanotechnology and assess the human health risk of environmental exposures to NPs from sources such as soil and air pollution.