Researchers Discover the Unique in vivo Transport and Bioavailability of Nanomaterials Bridged by Protein Corona

Data:2021-02-24  |  【 A  A  A 】  |  【Print】 【Close

A research team led by Prof. CHEN Chunying from the National Center for Nanoscience and Technology (NCNST) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), reported the unique protein corona-bridged transport–transformation–bioavailability chain of nanomaterials bearing essential trace elements. This work was published in Nature Nanotechnolog.

Interactions of nanomaterials/nanomedicines with biological milieu and other complex nano-bio interfaces are decisive for their delivery to the target site. Nanomaterials/nanomedicines will encounter complex biological barriers once entering the biosystem. Nanoparticle-blood proteins interaction is the first and key biological barrier. How to reveal the influence of the nanoparticle-protein interaction on the in vivo fate of nanoparticles is still a huge challenge. Therefore, it is absolutely imperative to establish multiscales and highly sensitive in-situ methods to analyze the metaboism and chemical forms of nanomaterials at the tissue, single-cell or even single-molecule level.
The researchers proposed a strategy by integrating multi-disciplinary state-of the art techniques, such as in-situ characterization of protein corona, metabolic analysis methods, proteomics, and molecular dynamics simulations, to study the whole in vivo metabolism and chemical transformation of nanomaterials. As an example, in vivo biological behaviour of two-dimensional transition metal dichalcogenide nanomaterial MoS2 bridged by protein corona was studied systematically.
Specifically, the researchers characterized the distribution and chemical forms of nanomaterials in target tissues and cells in-situ with high sensitivity and resolution by combining several synchrotron radiation-based techniques, i.e., X-ray fluorescence, X-ray absorption near-edge spectroscopy and soft X-ray nano-CT. 
More importantly, the spatial distribution of nanoparticles at single-cell level was realized. Also, the redox, degradation, metabolism and biochemical transformation behaviors of nanomaterials were clarified. This study provides a new understanding of the complex chemical and biological effects and mechanisms regulated by nanoparticle-biological interface.
With the proteomics and molecular dynamics simulations, researcher revealed the interaction mechanism of MoS2 with blood proteins and the functions of protein corona.
It is firstly proved the process and mechanism of the bioavailability of nanomaterials bearing essential trace elements. Nanomaterial-based therapies or diagnostics need to pay more attention to the bioavailability in vivo and the underlying impacts on the effectiveness of drugs when transferring to their biomedical applications.
This work was financially supported by the National Key Research and Development Program of China, the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the Strategic Priority Research Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (B) and Synchrotron Radiation Facilities, etc.


Figure. A protein corona-bridged transport–transformation–bioavailability chain of nanomaterials


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