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  • New mechanism of interaction between nanoparticles and pulmonary surfactant
    Author:   | Date:2014-01-02   | Click Rate:    | 【Close

    Interaction between the nanoparticles (NPs) and the pulmonary surfact film, being the first line of host defense, represents the initial bio-nano interaction in the lungs. Such interaction determines the fate of the inhaled NPs and their potential toxicological or therapeutic effects. Due to their small size, a large portion of inhaled NPs can deposit in the distal regions of the lung, at which the aerosolized NPs must interact with the pulmonary surfactant lining layer of alveoli. The complex interaction mechanism depends on the physicochemical properties of the NPs and also on the molecular composition, dynamic surface phase behavior, and monolayer biomechanics of the pulmonary surfactant.

    The researchers (Dr. Guoqing Hu, Mr. Bao Jiao and Dr. Xinghua Shi) from the State Key Laboratory of Nonlinear Mechanics at the Institute of Mechanics, colloraborating with Dr. Yi Zuo's group at Univesity of Hawaii, used combined molecular dynamics simulation and experimental measurement to systematically investigate how hydrophobicity and surface charge of NPs differentially regulate the interaction between the NPs and the natural pulmonary surfactant. The results indicate that interaction with the pulmonary surfactant and formation of lipoprotein corona not only affect the biophysical properties of the pulmonary surfactant film but also play an important role in regulating subsequent biomolecular exchange on NP surfaces, interaction with lung cells, and particle translocation to various organs and tissues. The data therefore suggest that any sutdy of inhalation nanotoxicology or NP-based pulmonary drug delivery should consider this NP-surfactant lipoprotein complex instead of the pristine NPs.

    This study was financially supported by the National Basic Research Program of China (973 Program), National Natural Science Foundation of China and National Science Foundation of USA. More details can be found in ACS Nano (Guoqing Hu, Bao Jiao, Xinghua Shi, Russell P. Valle, Qihui Fan, and Yi Y. Zuo. Physicochemical Properties of Nanoparticles Regulate Translocation across Pulmonary Surfactant Monolayer and Formation of Lipoprotein Corona. ACS Nano, 2013, 7, 10525–10533).

    Figure 1.  Due to their small size, a large portion of inhaled NPs can deposit in the distal regions of the lung, at which the aerosolized NPs must interact with the pulmonary surfactant lining layer of alveoli.

    Figure 2. Computer-simulated interaction between a hydrophobic nanoparticle (NP) of different surface charges and a pulmonary surfactant film under increasing compression. The three columns show the interaction between the pulmonary surfactant film and a cationic NP (in red), a neutral NP (in black), and an anionic NP (in blue), respectively. In each column, the pulmonary surfactant film is compressed into three stages.

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