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Evaluation on the toxicity of nanoAg to bovine serum albumin

Liu, Rutao, Sun, Feng, Zhang, Lijun, Zong, Wansong, Zhao, Xingchen, Wang, Li, Wu, Ruolin, Hao, Xiaopeng
Science of the total environment 2009 v.407 no.13 pp. 4184-4188
absorption, amino acids, bovine serum albumin, circular dichroism spectroscopy, electrophoresis, electrostatic interactions, fluorescence, hydrophobicity, light scattering, nanomaterials, skeleton, spectral analysis, toxicity, transmission electron microscopy
Measuring protein damage by nanomaterials may give insight into the mechanisms of toxicity of nanomaterials. The toxic effects of nanoAg on bovine serum albumin (BSA) were thoroughly studied using fluorescence spectroscopy, ultraviolet-visible absorption spectroscopy, resonance light scattering spectroscopy (RLS), circular dichroism spectroscopy (CD) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). NanoAg had obvious toxic effects on BSA: nanoAg could increase the amount of helix and decrease the beta sheet structure, leading to a loosening of the protein skeleton. In the loose structure, internal hydrophobic amino acids are exposed and the characteristic fluorescence of BSA is obviously quenched. When the ratio of nanoAg and BSA increased to 1: 96 (wt/wt), the impact of nanoAg on the spectral properties leveled off. The RLS spectrum, TEM, CD spectra and electrophoresis results showed that BSA had destroyed the double-layer structure of nanoAg and covered its surface, generating a BSA-nanoAg complex held together by van der Waals and electrostatic forces. This paper provides a new perspective and method for determining the toxic effects of nanoAg on biological macromolecules.