Optimization and Evaluation of Pretreatment Method for sp-ICP-MS to Reveal the Distribution of Silver Nanoparticles in the Body.


Graduate School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Osaka University, 1-6 Yamadaoka, Suita, Osaka, 565-0871, Japan. [Email]


The prevalent use of engineered nanoparticles (ENPs) has increased our exposure to these particles. The current available analytical techniques fail to simultaneously quantify and analyze the physical properties of ENPs in biological tissues. Therefore, new methods are required to evaluate the exposure conditions to ENPs. Single particle inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (sp-ICP-MS) is an attractive approach that can perform quantitative and qualitative analyses of ENPs. However, the application of this approach for biological samples is limited because of the lack of pretreatment methods for effectively recovering ENPs from biological tissues. In this study, we evaluated various pretreatment methods and identified the optimal pretreatment conditions for sp-ICP-MS analyses of ENPs in biological tissues using silver nanoparticles (nAg) as a model. We screened five reagents as pretreatment solvents (sodium hydroxide, tetramethylammonium hydroxide, nitric acid, hydrochloric acid, and proteinase K). Our results showed that treatment with sodium hydroxide was optimal for detecting nAg in the mouse liver. Moreover, this pretreatment method can be applied to other organs, such as the heart, lung, spleen, and kidney. Finally, we evaluated the applicability of this method by analyzing the quantity and physical properties of silver in the mouse blood and liver, after intravenous administration of nAg or silver ion. Our sp-ICP-MS method revealed that nAg administered into the blood was partially ionized and tended to be distributed in the particle form (approximately 80%) in the liver and in ionic form (approximately 95%) in the blood. In conclusion, we optimized pretreatment strategies for sp-ICP-MS evaluation of ENPs in biological tissues and demonstrated its applicability by evaluating the changes in the physical properties of nAg in the liver and blood. We also showed that partial changes from the particle form to the ionic form of nAg influences their kinetics and distribution when administered to mice.


Engineered nanoparticles,Pretreatment of animal tissues,Risk evaluation,Silver nanoparticles,Single particle inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry,

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