Specifically Formed Corona on Silica Nanoparticles Enhances Transforming Growth Factor β1 Activity in Triggering Lung Fibrosis
datasetposted on 13.01.2017, 00:00 by Zhenzhen Wang, Chunming Wang, Shang Liu, Wei He, Lintao Wang, JingJing Gan, Zhen Huang, Zhenheng Wang, Haoyang Wei, Junfeng Zhang, Lei Dong
A corona is a layer of macromolecules formed on a nanoparticle surface in vivo. It can substantially change the biological identity of nanomaterials and possibly trigger adverse responses from the body tissues. Dissecting the role of the corona in the development of a particular disease may provide profound insights for understanding toxicity of nanomaterials in general. In our present study, we explored the capability of different silica nanoparticles (SiNPs) to induce silicosis in the mouse lung and analyzed the composition of coronas formed on these particles. We found that SiNPs of certain size and surface chemistry could specifically recruit transforming growth factor β1 (TGF-β1) into their corona, which subsequently induces the development of lung fibrosis. Once embedded into the corona on SiNPs, TGF-β1 was remarkably more stable than in its free form, and its fibrosis-triggering activity was significantly prolonged. Our study meaningfully demonstrates that a specific corona component on a certain nanoparticle could initiate a particular pathogenic process in a clinically relevant disease model. Our findings may shed light on the understanding of molecular mechanisms of human health risks correlated with exposure to small-scale substances.