Biocompatibility of thermally hydrocarbonized porous silicon nanoparticles and their biodistribution in rats

Luis M. Bimbo, Mirkka Sarparanta, Hélder A. Santos, Anu J. Airaksinen, Ermei Mäkilä, Timo Laaksonen, Leena Peltonen, Vesa-Pekka Lehto, Jouni Hirvonen, Jarno Salonen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

279 Citations (Scopus)


Porous silicon (PSi) particles have been studied for the effects they elicit in Caco-2 and RAW 264.7 macrophage cells in terms of toxicity, oxidative stress, and inflammatory response. The most suitable particles were then functionalized with a novel (18)F label to assess their biodistribution after enteral and parenteral administration in a rat model. The results show that thermally hydrocarbonized porous silicon (THCPSi) nanoparticles did not induce any significant toxicity, oxidative stress, or inflammatory response in Caco-2 and RAW 264.7 macrophage cells. Fluorescently labeled nanoparticles were associated with the cells surface but were not extensively internalized. Biodistribution studies in rats using novel (18)F-labeled THCPSi nanoparticles demonstrated that the particles passed intact through the gastrointestinal tract after oral administration and were also not absorbed from a subcutaneous deposit. After intravenous administration, the particles were found mainly in the liver and spleen, indicating rapid removal from the circulation. Overall, these silicon-based nanosystems exhibit excellent in vivo stability, low cytotoxicity, and nonimmunogenic profiles, ideal for oral drug delivery purposes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3023-3032
Number of pages10
JournalACS Nano
Issue number6
Early online date28 May 2010
Publication statusPublished - 22 Jun 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • administration, oral
  • animals
  • diffusion
  • hot temperature
  • hydrocarbons
  • male
  • nanoparticles
  • organ specificity
  • porosity
  • rats
  • rats, wistar
  • silicon
  • tissue distribution


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