Profiling of sub‐lethal in vitro effects of multi‐walled carbon nanotubes reveals changes in chemokines and chemokine receptors
Journal article, 2021

Engineered nanomaterials are potentially very useful for a variety of applications, but studies are needed to ascertain whether these materials pose a risk to human health. Here, we studied three benchmark nanomaterials (Ag nanoparticles, TiO2 nanoparticles, and multi‐walled carbon nanotubes, MWCNTs) procured from the nanomaterial repository at the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission. Having established a sub‐lethal concentration of these materials using two human cell lines representative of the immune system and the lungs, respectively, we performed RNA sequencing of the macrophage‐like cell line after exposure for 6, 12, and 24 h. Downstream analysis of the transcriptomics data revealed significant effects on chemokine signaling pathways. CCR2 was identified as the most significantly upregulated gene in MWCNT‐exposed cells. Using multiplex assays to evaluate cytokine and chemokine secretion, we could show significant effects of MWCNTs on several chemokines, including CCL2, a ligand of CCR2. The results demonstrate the importance of evaluating sub‐lethal concentrations of nanomaterials in relevant target cells.




Multi‐walled carbon nanotubes



Sandeep Keshavan

Karolinska Institutet

Fernando Torres Andón

Karolinska Institutet

Humanitas Research Hospital

Universidade de Santiagode Compostela

Audrey Gallud

Chalmers, Biology and Biological Engineering, Chemical Biology

Karolinska Institutet

Wei Chen

Southern University of Science and Technology

Max Delbruck Center for Molecular Medicine

Knut Reinert

Freie Universität Berlin

Lang Tran

Institute Of Occupational Medicine

Bengt Fadeel

Karolinska Institutet


20794991 (eISSN)

Vol. 11 4 883

Subject Categories

Cell Biology


Immunology in the medical area





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