LNNano - Brazilian Nanotechnology National Laboratory

Common tools to comprehensively characterize the toxicological profile of two dimensional materials at cell level

Assessing the Adverse Effects of Two-Dimensional Materials Using Cell Culture-Based Models

Lidiane S. Franquia,b,c,d, Luis A. V. Lunaa,b, Thomas Loreta,b, Diego S. T. Martinezc,d and Cyrill Bussya,b,e,d,f

aNanomedicine lab, Nano-Inflammation Team, School of Health Sciences, Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health, The University of Manchester, Manchester, UK.

bNational Graphene Institute, The University of Manchester, Manchester, M13 9PT, UK.

cBrazilian Nanotechnology National Laboratory (LNNano), Brazilian Center for Research in Energy and Materials (CNPEM), Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil.

dSchool of Technology, University of Campinas (UNICAMP), Limeira, São Paulo, Brazil.

eLydia Becker Institute of Immunology and Inflammation, Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health, The University of Manchester, Manchester, UK.

fThomas Ashton Institute for Risk and Regulatory Research, The University of Manchester, Manchester, UK.


Two dimensional materials (2D materials) are a relatively new class of engineered nanomaterials (ENM) defined by their property of being one or two atoms thick, with atoms arranged in a two dimensional plane. Since 2010, these materials have slowly but consistently progressed from lab bench discoveries to real life products and have now reached the global market. While this transfer from academia to industry has been relatively fast, there remain some concerns as to their safety profiles, which have not been studied as extensively as their properties and applications. Cell culture based assays are currently the most accessible and sustainable methods to evaluate the potential of ENMs to cause harm to humans. They have been developed as alternatives to the costly and time-consuming animal-based assays that were used in the past for safety testing of new chemicals. While some of these assays have proven to be highly reliable to predict 2D material deleterious impacts (after confirmation of similar outcomes in animal models), some assays were revealed to be not applicable for hazard testing of these flat materials due to interference of the materials with reagents, causing misleading results.

This chapter aims to review the latest knowledge and most significant works on the assessment of two dimensional materials potential to induce adverse effects on human health. It highlights the key knowledge achieved so far, not only in terms of negative impact but also solutions identified to make those materials safer or even biocompatible.

Nanotechnology Characterization Tools for Environment, Health, and Safety (Springer – 2019)

Link: https://www.springer.com/gp/book/9783662595992#