In Vitro Characterization

In vitro assays enable the isolation and analysis of specific biological and mechanistic pathways under controlled conditions. While many in vitro assays for nanomaterials will be similar to those used for traditional drugs, others will address mechanisms more specific to nanoparticles, such as oxidative stress. Noncellular assays measuring processes, such as protein adsorption, will also be an important accompaniment to cell-based assays. For example, monitoring the profile of serum proteins that absorb to nanoparticles in an in vitro environment may further our understanding of how nanoparticles interact with components of the reticuloendothelial system (RES) in vivo.8,9 Additionally, proteomics and toxicogenomics can be employed to potentially identify biomarkers of toxicity related to nanomaterial exposure.10

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