Pooling and Analysis of Published in Vitro Data: A Proof of Concept Study for the Grouping of Nanoparticles

Int J Mol Sci. 2015 Nov 2;16(11):26211-36. doi: 10.3390/ijms161125954.


The study aim was to test the applicability of pooling of nanomaterials-induced in vitro data for identifying the toxic capacity of specific (SiO₂, TiO₂, ZnO, CuO, CeO₂ and carbon nanotubes, [CNT]) nanoparticles (NP) and to test the usefulness for grouping purposes. Publication selection was based on specific criteria regarding experimental conditions. Two relevant biological endpoints were selected; generation of intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) and viability above 90%. The correlations of the ROS ratios with the NP parameters' size, concentration, and exposure time were analysed. The obtained data sets were then analysed with multiple regression analysis of variance (ANOVA) and the Tukey post-hoc test. The results show that this method is applicable for the selected metal oxide NP, but might need reconsideration and a larger data set for CNT. Several statistically significant correlations and results were obtained, thus validating the method. Furthermore, the relevance of the combination of ROS release with a cell viability test was shown. The data also show that it is advisable to compare ROS production of professional phagocytic with non-phagocytic cells. In conclusion, this is the first systematic analysis showing that pooling of available data into groups is a useful method for evaluation of data regarding NP induced toxicity in vitro.

Keywords: CNT; cell viability; intracellular ROS; nanoparticles; phagocytic and non-phagocytic cells; toxicity.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cell Survival
  • Metal Nanoparticles / chemistry
  • Metal Nanoparticles / toxicity
  • Nanoparticles* / chemistry
  • Nanoparticles* / toxicity
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism


  • Reactive Oxygen Species