Graduate Student Missouri State University Springfield, Missouri, United States
Victoria Davenport (Missouri State University)
InP/ZnS quantum dots (QDs) are an emerging option in QD technologies for uses of fluorescent imaging as well as targeted drug and anticancer therapies based on their customizable properties. In this study we explored effects of InP/ZnS when treated with HeLa cervical cancer cells. We employed XTT viability assays, reactive oxygen species (ROS) analysis, and apoptosis analysis to better understand cytotoxicity extents at different concentrations of InP/ZnS. In addition, we compared the transcriptome profile from the QD-treated HeLa cells with that of untreated HeLa cells to identify changes to the transcriptome in response to the QD. Resulting RNAseq data illustrated the QD mode of action within the cell. Our study determined both IC50 concentration of 69 µg/mL and MIC concentration of 167 µg/mL of InP/ZnS. It was observed via XTT assay that cell viability was decreased significantly at the MIC. Production of superoxide, measured by ROS assay with flow cytometry, was decreased, whereas levels of peroxynitrite increased. Using analysis of apoptosis, we found that induced cell death in the QD-treated samples was shown to be significantly increased when compared to untreated cells. We conclude InP/ZnS QD to decrease cell viability by inducing stress via ROS levels, apoptosis induction, and alteration of transcriptome.