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Phospholipid surfactant adsorption by respirable quartz and in vitro expression of cytotoxicity and DNA damage.

Liu X; Keane MJ; Harrison JC; Cilento EV; Ong T; Wallace WE
Toxicol Lett 1998 Aug; 96-97:77-84
Respirable-sized quartz was treated with a saline dispersion of dipalmitoyl phosphatidylcholine (DPPC), a primary component of pulmonary surfactant, to model the adsorption of phospholipid surfactant onto quartz dust following particle deposition in the bronchoalveolar region of the lung. Control and surfactant-treated dusts were used to challenge lavaged rat pulmonary macrophages in vitro over a 1-week period, to determine the effects of adsorbed surfactant on the expression of quartz cytotoxicity and genotoxicity. DNA damage was determined by the single cell gel electrophoresis 'comet' assay. Untreated quartz induced DNA damage, increasing with dose and with time of incubation of dust with macrophages over a 5 day period. DPPC treatment of quartz suppressed DNA damage through 1 day of macrophage challenge. DNA damage then increased over a 5 day period, to approximately half the positive control (untreated quartz) values. Cytotoxicity was measured by trypan blue dye exclusion and by the Live-Dead fluorescence assay for cell viability. Cytotoxicity of surfactant-treated quartz measured one day after challenge of lavaged macrophages was suppressed to values near those of the negative controls, and then increased over a 1 week incubation period to levels near those expressed by native quartz positive controls. Quartz similarly treated with dioleoyl phosphatidylcholine mixed with DPPC substituted in one acyl group with a boron-containing fluorescent chromophore was used with confocal microscopy to measure particle-associated fluorescent surfactant in cells. Approximately half of the fluorescence intensity was lost over a 1 week period following challenge of lavaged macrophage. Results are discussed in terms of a model of restoration of quartz particle surface toxicity as prophylactic surfactant is removed from particle surface by cellular enzymatic digestion processes.
Dust-analysis; Dust-exposure; Dust-measurement; Dust-particles; Dusts; Bronchial-asthma; Alveolar-cells; Breathing; Pulmonary-congestion; Pulmonary-disorders; Pulmonary-system-disorders; Lung; Lung-burden; Lung-cells; Lung-disorders; Lung-irritants; Quartz-dust; Cell-biology; Cell-metabolism; Particulate-dust; Author Keywords: Quartz; Phospholipid surfactant; Phospholipase; Alveolar macrophage; DNA damage; Cytotoxicity; Fluorescence microscopy
Publication Date
Document Type
Journal Article
Fiscal Year
NIOSH Division
Source Name
Toxicology Letters
Page last reviewed: August 1, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division