Saturday, November 07, 2009

nanoparticles hazardous to dna

The Scientist | Nanoparticles can damage DNA even in cells that are not directly exposed to them, according to an in vitro study published online today (November 5) in Nature Nanotechnology -- raising further questions about the safety of nanomaterials used in clinical therapies.

"DNA damage due to nanoparticles has been described for many types of nanoparticles, but that's done in a primary or direct sense," said Andre Nel, chief of NanoMedicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, who was not involved in the study. "Indirect DNA damage to hazardous nanoparticles is not something that I have seen described before."

Scientists are using nanotechnology to develop delivery systems for drugs and imaging agents, but some studies have suggested these particles may be toxic. Researchers have linked inhalation of nanoparticles or nanotubes to cardoirespiratory disease, for example. Additionally, nanoparticle debris from implants, such as cobalt-chromium (CoCr) alloy particles which can be released from metal-on-metal orthopedic joint replacements, are known to damage human cells in culture.Justify Full