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Nanomaterials 2016, 6(11), 208; doi:10.3390/nano6110208

Oral Toxicity and Intestinal Transport Mechanism of Colloidal Gold Nanoparticle-Treated Red Ginseng

1
Division of Applied Food System, Major of Food Science and Technology, Seoul Women’s University, Seoul 01797, Korea
2
SMNANOBIO Co., Ltd., Daejeon 34028, Korea
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Graham Bonwick and Catherine S. Birch
Received: 4 September 2016 / Revised: 29 October 2016 / Accepted: 3 November 2016 / Published: 11 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nanomaterials in Food Safety)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1286 KB, uploaded 11 November 2016]   |  

Abstract

(1) Background: Application of nanotechnology or nanomaterials in agricultural food crops has attracted increasing attention with regard to improving crop production, quality, and nutrient utilization. Gold nanoparticles (Au-NPs) have been reported to enhance seed yield, germination rate, and anti-oxidant potential in food crops, raising concerns about their toxicity potential. In this study, we evaluated the oral toxicity of red ginseng exposed to colloidal Au-NPs during cultivation (G-red ginseng) in rats and their intestinal transport mechanism. (2) Methods: 14-day repeated oral administration of G-red ginseng extract to rats was performed, and body weight, hematological, serum biochemical, and histopathological values were analyzed. An in vitro model of human intestinal follicle-associated epithelium (FAE) and an intestinal epithelial monolayer system were used for intestinal transport mechanistic study. (3) Results: No remarkable oral toxicity of G-red ginseng extract in rats was found, and Au-NPs did not accumulate in any organ, although Au-NP transfer to G-red ginseng and some increased saponin levels were confirmed. Au-NPs were transcytozed by microfold (M) cells, but not by a paracellular pathway in the intestinal epithelium. (4) Conclusion: These findings suggest great potential of Au-NPs for agricultural food crops at safe levels. Further study is required to elucidate the functional effects of Au-NPs on ginseng and long-term toxicity. View Full-Text
Keywords: gold nanoparticle; red ginseng; oral toxicity; transport mechanism gold nanoparticle; red ginseng; oral toxicity; transport mechanism
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Bae, S.-H.; Yu, J.; Go, M.-R.; Kim, H.-J.; Hwang, Y.-G.; Choi, S.-J. Oral Toxicity and Intestinal Transport Mechanism of Colloidal Gold Nanoparticle-Treated Red Ginseng. Nanomaterials 2016, 6, 208.

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