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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2014, 15(4), 6072-6085; doi:10.3390/ijms15046072

Comparative Pulmonary Toxicity of Two Ceria Nanoparticles with the Same Primary Size

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Received: 12 February 2014 / Revised: 25 March 2014 / Accepted: 27 March 2014 / Published: 10 April 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanotoxicology and Lung Diseases)
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Ceria nanoparticles (nano-ceria) have recently gained a wide range of applications, which might pose unwanted risks to both the environment and human health. The greatest potential for the environmental discharge of nano-ceria appears to be in their use as a diesel fuel additive. The present study was designed to explore the pulmonary toxicity of nano-ceria in mice after a single exposure via intratracheal instillation. Two types of nano-ceria with the same distribution of a primary size (3–5 nm), but different redox activity, were used: Ceria-p, synthesized by a precipitation route, and Ceria-h, synthesized by a hydrothermal route. Both Ceria-p and Ceria-h induced oxidative stress, inflammatory responses and cytotoxicity in mice, but their toxicological profiles were quite different. The mean size of Ceria-p agglomerates was much smaller compared to Ceria-h, thereby causing a more potent acute inflammation, due to their higher number concentration of agglomerates and higher deposition rate in the deep lung. Ceria-h had a higher reactivity to catalyzing the generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS), and caused two waves of lung injury: bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) inflammation and cytotoxicity in the early stage and redox-activity-evoked lipid peroxidation and pro-inflammation in the latter stage. Therefore, the size distribution of ceria-containing agglomerates in the exhaust, as well as their surface chemistry are essential characteristics to assess the potential risks of using nano-ceria as a fuel additive.
Keywords: nano-ceria; pulmonary toxicity; agglomerates; size distribution; surface chemistry nano-ceria; pulmonary toxicity; agglomerates; size distribution; surface chemistry
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Peng, L.; He, X.; Zhang, P.; Zhang, J.; Li, Y.; Zhang, J.; Ma, Y.; Ding, Y.; Wu, Z.; Chai, Z.; Zhang, Z. Comparative Pulmonary Toxicity of Two Ceria Nanoparticles with the Same Primary Size. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2014, 15, 6072-6085.

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