Archives of Toxicology

, Volume 87, Issue 6, pp 1067–1073

Nanosized copper oxide induces apoptosis through oxidative stress in podocytes


  • Jing Xu
    • College of MedicineNankai University
  • Zhigui Li
    • College of MedicineNankai University
  • Pengjuan Xu
    • College of MedicineNankai University
  • Lu Xiao
    • College of MedicineNankai University
    • College of MedicineNankai University
Inorganic Compounds

DOI: 10.1007/s00204-012-0925-0

Cite this article as:
Xu, J., Li, Z., Xu, P. et al. Arch Toxicol (2013) 87: 1067. doi:10.1007/s00204-012-0925-0


Nanosized copper oxide (nano-CuO) has been widely used in many fields. Recent studies have shown that nano-CuO has toxic effects on various organs, but the effects of nano-CuO on kidney remain unclear. The aim of this study was to assess whether nano-CuO can induce the apoptosis of podocytes. The result of 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay indicated that nano-CuO decreased podocyte viability in a concentration-dependent and time-dependent manner. The apoptotic assay by flow cytometry showed that nano-CuO induced podocyte apoptosis significantly. Meanwhile, the result of flow cytometric assay gave a clear indication that nano-CuO increased reactive oxygen species (ROS) level. The measurement of superoxide dismutase (SOD) and malondialdehyde (MDA) showed that nano-CuO decreased SOD and increased MDA levels in podocytes. These results may provide basic information for the safe application of nano-CuO in the future.


Nanosized copper oxidePodocytesApoptosisROSSODMDA

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© Springer-Verlag 2012