Gold nanoparticles synthesized using plant extracts with medicinal properties have gained traction in recent years, especially for their use in various biomedical applications. Colloidal stability of these nanoparticles in different environments is critical to retain the expected therapeutic/diagnostic efficacy and toxicological outcome. Any change in the colloidal stability leads to dramatic changes in the physico-chemical properties of the nanoparticles such as size and surface charge, which in turn may alter the biological activity of the particles. Such changes are imminent in physiologically-relevant environment wherein interactions with different biomolecules, such as serum proteins, may modify the overall properties of the nanoparticles. In this regard, we synthesized 15 nm sized gold nanoparticles using curcumin, a plant extract from turmeric root, to evaluate cytotoxicity, uptake, and localization in human prostate cancer cells using cell-culture medium supplemented with or without fetal bovine serum (FBS). The results indicate a dramatic difference in the cytotoxicity and uptake between cells treated with curcumin-functionalized gold nanoparticles (cur-AuNPs) in cell-culture medium with and without serum. The addition of FBS to the medium not only increased the stability of the nanoparticles but also enhanced the biocompatibility (i.e. minimal cytotoxicity for a wide range of cur-AuNP concentrations). We conclude that the presence of serum proteins significantly impact the therapeutic potential of cur-AuNPs.
Gold nanoparticles Curcumin Prostate cancer Serum protein Cytotoxicity Cellular uptake
This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.
This research was financially supported by the Telus Ride for Dad and the Prostate Cancer Fight Foundation. We are thankful to Prof. Jonathan Blay for his help with the phase contrast microscope.
Mahl D, Greulich C, Meyer-Zaika W, Köller M, Epple M (2010) Gold nanoparticles: dispersibility in biological media and cell-biological effect. J Mater Chem 20:6176–6181CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Manju S, Sreenivasan K (2012) Gold nanoparticles generated and stabilized by water soluble curcumin–polymer conjugate: blood compatibility evaluation and targeted drug delivery onto cancer cells. J Colloid Interface Sci 368:144–151CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Moore TL et al (2015) Nanoparticle colloidal stability in cell culture media and impact on cellular interactions. Chem Soc Rev 44:6287–6305CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Nune SK et al (2009) Green nanotechnology from tea: phytochemicals in tea as building blocks for production of biocompatible gold nanoparticles. J Mater Chem 19:2912–2920CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Parida UK, Bindhani BK, Nayak P (2011) Green synthesis and characterization of gold nanoparticles using onion (Allium cepa) extract. World J Nano Sci Eng 1:93CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Priyadarsini KI (2014) The chemistry of curcumin: from extraction to therapeutic agent. Molecules 19:20091–20112CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sanna V et al (2014) Single-step green synthesis and characterization of gold-conjugated polyphenol nanoparticles with antioxidant and biological activities. Int J Nanomed 9:4935Google Scholar
Shukla R et al (2008) Soybeans as a phytochemical reservoir for the production and stabilization of biocompatible gold nanoparticles. Small 4:1425–1436CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sindhu K, Rajaram A, Sreeram K, Rajaram R (2014) Curcumin conjugated gold nanoparticle synthesis and its biocompatibility. RSC Adv 4:1808–1818Google Scholar
Singh C, Baboota RK, Naik PK, Singh H (2012) Biocompatible synthesis of silver and gold nanoparticles using leaf extract of Dalbergia sissoo. Adv Mater Lett 3:279–285CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Singh DK, Jagannathan R, Khandelwal P, Abraham PM, Poddar P (2013) In situ synthesis and surface functionalization of gold nanoparticles with curcumin and their antioxidant properties: an experimental and density functional theory investigation. Nanoscale 5:1882–1893CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sneha K, Sathishkumar M, Lee SY, Bae MA, Yun Y-S (2011) Biosynthesis of Au nanoparticles using cumin seed powder extract. J Nanosci Nanotechnol 11:1811–1814CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sreelakshmi C, Goel N, Datta K, Addlagatta A, Ummanni R, Reddy B (2013) Green synthesis of curcumin capped gold nanoparticles and evaluation of their cytotoxicity. Nanosci Nanotechnol Lett 5:1258–1265CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Teiten M-H, Eifes S, Dicato M, Diederich M (2010) Curcumin—the paradigm of a multi-target natural compound with applications in cancer prevention and treatment. Toxins 2:128–162CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Yallapu MM, Jaggi M, Chauhan SC (2012) Curcumin nanoformulations: a future nanomedicine for cancer. Drug Discov Today 17:71–80CrossRefGoogle Scholar