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Gavello D.,University of Turin | Gavello D.,Interdepartimental Center for Nanostructured Interfaces and Surfaces | Vandael D.H.F.,University of Turin | Cesa R.,University of Turin | And 20 more authors.
Nanotoxicology | Year: 2012

We studied the effects of multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWCNTs) on the electrophysiological properties of cultured mouse chromaffin cells, a model of spontaneously firing cells. The exposure of chromaffin cells to MWCNTs at increasing concentrations (30-263 μg/ml) for 24 h reduced, in a dose-dependent way, both the cell membrane input resistance and the number of spontaneously active cells (from 80-52%). Active cells that survived from the toxic effects of MWCNTs exhibited more positive resting potentials, higher firing frequencies and unaltered voltage-gated Ca 2+, Na + and K+ current amplitudes. MWCNTs slowed down the inactivation kinetics of Ca 2+-dependent BK channels. These electrophysiological effects were accompanied by MWCNTs internalization, as confirmed by transmission electron microscopy, indicating that most of the toxic effects derive from a dose-dependent MWCNTs-cell interaction that damages the spontaneous cell activity. © 2012 Informa UK, Ltd.

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