African Journal of
Biochemistry Research

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Biochem. Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0778
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJBR
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 418

Full Length Research Paper

Effect of ferric oxide nanoparticles on microtubules organization

Ali Khaleghian1,2, Gholam Hossein Riazi2, Shahin Ahmadian2, Mahmoud Ghafari2, Marzieh Rezaie1, Akira Takahashi3, Yutaka Nakaya3 and Hossein Nazari13*
1Department of Biochemistry and Hematology, Semnan University of Medical Sciences, Semnan, Iran. 2Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, University of Tehran, 13145-1384, Iran. 3Department of Nutrition and Metabolism, University of Tokushima, Tokushima, Japan.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 14 March 2010
  •  Published: 30 April 2010


Nanoparticles (NPs) are widely used in several manufactured products. The small size of nanoparticles facilitates­ their uptake into cells as well as transcytosis across epithelial cells into blood and lymph circulation to reach different sites, such as the central nervous system. Studies have shown different risks of Fe2O3NPs in the neuronal system and other organs. They are membrane-bound layer aggregates or single particles that could not enter only cells, but also in mitochondria and nuclei. Therefore­, these particles can interact with cytoplasmic proteins­ such as microtubules (MTs). MTs are cytoskeleton proteins that are essential in eukaryotic cells for a variety of functions, such as cellular transport, cell motility and mitosis. MTs play an important role in neurons and to act as a substances transport such as neurotransmitters. Single Fe2O3NPs in cytoplasm can interact­ with these proteins and affect their crucial functions­ in different­ tissues. In this study, we showed the effects of Fe2O3NPs on MTs organization and structure using ultraviolet spectrophotometer and fluorometry. The fluorescent spectroscopy­ showed a significant tubulin conformational­ change in the presence of Fe2O3NPs and the ultraviolet spectroscopy­ results showed that Fe2O3NPs causes MTs depolymerization and decrease turbidity intensity as well as increase spectra emission. The aim of this study was to find the potential risks that Fe2O3NPs pose to human organs and cells for cancer treatment.


Key words: Ferric oxide, tubulin, microtubule, protein­ interaction, nanoparticle.