Uptake and effects of polystyrene nanoplastics in comparison to non-plastic silica nanoparticles on small intestine cells (IPEC-J2)

Anna Ronja Dorothea Binder, Veronika Mussack, Benedikt Kirchner, Michael W. Pfaffl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Nanoplastics smaller than 1 µm accumulate as anthropogenic material in the food chain, but only little is known about their uptake and possible effects on potentially strongly exposed cells of the small intestine. The aim of the study was to observe the uptake of 100 nm polystyrene nanoplastics into a non-tumorigenic small intestine cell culture model (IPEC-J2 cells) and to monitor the effects on cell growth and gene regulation, compared to a 100 nm non-plastic silica nanoparticle reference. The intracellular uptake of both types of nanoparticles was proven via (confocal) fluorescence microscopy and complemented with transmission electron microscopy. Fluorescence microscopy showed a growth phase-dependent uptake of nanoparticles into the cells, hence further experiments included different time points related to epithelial closure, determined via electric cell substrate impedance sensing. No retardations in epithelial closure of cells after treatment with polystyrene nanoparticles could be found. In contrast, epithelial cell closure was partly negatively influenced by silica nanoparticles. An increased production of organic nanoparticles, like extracellular vesicles, was not measurable via nanoparticle tracking analysis. An assessment of messenger RNA by next generation sequencing and subsequent pathway analysis revealed that the TP53 pathway was influenced significantly by the polystyrene nanoparticle treatment. In both treatments, dysregulated mRNAs were highly enriched in the NOTCH signaling pathway compared to the non-particle control.

Original languageEnglish
Article number115147
JournalEcotoxicology and Environmental Safety
Volume262
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2023

Keywords

  • Electric cell-substrate impedance sensing (ECIS)
  • IPEC-J2 cells
  • Nanoplastic
  • Next-generation sequencing (NGS)
  • Polystyrene
  • Silica

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