Micro- and Nanoplastics Breach the Blood–Brain Barrier (BBB): Biomolecular Corona’s Role Revealed

Kopatz, Verena and Wen, Kevin and Kovács, Tibor and Keimowitz, Alison S. and Pichler, Verena and Widder, Joachim and Vethaak, A. Dick and Hollóczki, Oldamur and Kenner, Lukas (2023) Micro- and Nanoplastics Breach the Blood–Brain Barrier (BBB): Biomolecular Corona’s Role Revealed. NANOMATERIALS, 13 (8). No-1404. ISSN 2079-4991

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Humans are continuously exposed to polymeric materials such as in textiles, car tires and packaging. Unfortunately, their break down products pollute our environment, leading to widespread contamination with micro- and nanoplastics (MNPs). The blood–brain barrier (BBB) is an important biological barrier that protects the brain from harmful substances. In our study we performed short term uptake studies in mice with orally administered polystyrene micro-/nanoparticles (9.55 µm, 1.14 µm, 0.293 µm). We show that nanometer sized particles—but not bigger particles—reach the brain within only 2 h after gavage. To understand the transport mechanism, we performed coarse-grained molecular dynamics simulations on the interaction of DOPC bilayers with a polystyrene nanoparticle in the presence and absence of various coronae. We found that the composition of the biomolecular corona surrounding the plastic particles was critical for passage through the BBB. Cholesterol molecules enhanced the uptake of these contaminants into the membrane of the BBB, whereas the protein model inhibited it. These opposing effects could explain the passive transport of the particles into the brain.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: polystyrene; micro-/nanoplastic; blood–brain barrier; biomolecular corona; computational uptake modeling
Subjects: Q Science / természettudomány > QD Chemistry / kémia > QD02 Physical chemistry / fizikai kémia
R Medicine / orvostudomány > RS Pharmacy and materia medica / gyógyszerészet, gyógyászati eszközök
Depositing User: MTMT SWORD
Date Deposited: 28 Sep 2023 07:59
Last Modified: 28 Sep 2023 07:59

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