Acute toxicity and biodistribution of different sized titanium dioxide particles in mice after oral administration

Toxicol Lett. 2007 Jan 30;168(2):176-85. doi: 10.1016/j.toxlet.2006.12.001. Epub 2006 Dec 9.


In order to evaluate the toxicity of TiO(2) particles, the acute toxicity of nano-sized TiO(2) particles (25 and 80nm) on adult mice was investigated compared with fine TiO(2) particles (155nm). Due to the low toxicity, a fixed large dose of 5g/kg body weight of TiO(2) suspensions was administrated by a single oral gavage according to the OECD procedure. In 2 weeks, TiO(2) particles showed no obvious acute toxicity. However, the female mice showed high coefficients of liver in the nano-sized (25 and 80nm) groups. The changes of serum biochemical parameters (ALT/AST, LDH) and pathology (hydropic degeneration around the central vein and the spotty necrosis of hepatocytes) of liver indicated that the hepatic injury was induced after exposure to mass different-sized TiO(2) particles. In addition, the nephrotoxicity like increased BUN level and pathology change of kidneys was also observed in the experimental groups. The significant change of serum LDH and alpha-HBDH in 25 and 80nm groups showed the myocardial damage compared with the control group. However, there are no abnormal pathology changes in the heart, lung, testicle (ovary), and spleen tissues. Biodistribution experiment showed that TiO(2) mainly retained in the liver, spleen, kidneys, and lung tissues, which indicated that TiO(2) particles could be transported to other tissues and organs after uptake by gastrointestinal tract.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomarkers
  • Body Weight / drug effects
  • Female
  • Intubation, Gastrointestinal
  • Kidney / metabolism
  • Kidney / pathology
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Liver / pathology
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred ICR
  • Particle Size
  • Spleen / metabolism
  • Spleen / pathology
  • Tissue Distribution
  • Titanium / metabolism
  • Titanium / pharmacokinetics*
  • Titanium / toxicity*


  • Biomarkers
  • titanium dioxide
  • Titanium