Nanoparticle corona artefacts derived from specimen preparation of particle suspensions

  • Martha Ilett /
  • Omar Matar /
  • Faith Bamiduro /
  • Sergio Sanchez-Segado /
  • Rik Brydson /
  • Andy Brown /
  • Nicole Hondow
Journal ar
Scientific Reports
  • Volumen: 10
  • Número: 1
  • Fecha: 01 diciembre 2020
  • ISSN: 20452322
  • Tipo de fuente: Revista
  • DOI: 10.1038/s41598-020-62253-y
  • Tipo de documento: Artículo
  • Editorial: Nature Research
© 2020, The Author(s).Progress in the implementation of nanoparticles for therapeutic applications will accelerate with an improved understanding of the interface between nanoparticle surfaces and the media they are dispersed in. We examine this interface by analytical scanning transmission electron microscopy and show that incorrect specimen preparation or analysis can induce an artefactual, nanoscale, calcium phosphate-rich, amorphous coating on nanoparticles dispersed in cell culture media. We report that this ionic coating can be induced on five different types of nanoparticles (Au, BaTiO3, ZnO, TiO2 and Fe2O3) when specimen preparation causes a significant rise in pH above physiological levels. Such a pH change reduces ionic solubility in the suspending media to permit precipitation of calcium phosphate. Finally, we demonstrate that there is no indication of a calcium-phosphorus-rich coating on BaTiO3 nanoparticles suspended in culture media when prepared without alteration of the pH of the suspending media and imaged by cryo-STEM. Therefore we recommend that future reports utilising nanoparticles dispersed in cell culture media monitor and report the pH of suspensions during sample preparation.

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