Gene expression profiling in rat kidney after intratracheal exposure to cadmium-doped nanoparticles

Teresa Coccini, Elisa Roda, Marco Fabbri, Maria Grazia Sacco, Laura Gribaldo, Luigi Manzo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


While nephrotoxicity of cadmium is well documented, very limited information exists on renal effects of exposure to cadmium-containing nanomaterials. In this work, "omics" methodologies have been used to assess the action of cadmium-containing silica nanoparticles (Cd-SiNPs) in the kidney of Sprague-Dawley rats exposed intratracheally. Groups of animals received a single dose of Cd-SiNPs (1 mg/rat), CdCl 2 (400 μg/rat) or 0.1 ml saline (control). Renal gene expression was evaluated 7 and 30 days post exposure by DNA microarray technology using the Agilent Whole Rat Genome Microarray 4x44K. Gene modulating effects were observed in kidney at both time periods after treatment with Cd-SiNPs. The number of differentially expressed genes being 139 and 153 at the post exposure days 7 and 30, respectively. Renal gene expression changes were also observed in the kidney of CdCl 2-treated rats with a total of 253 and 70 probes modulated at 7 and 30 days, respectively. Analysis of renal gene expression profiles at day 7 indicated in both Cd-SiNP and CdCl 2 groups downregulation of several cluster genes linked to immune function, oxidative stress, and inflammation processes. Differing from day 7, the majority of cluster gene categories modified by nanoparticles in kidney 30 days after dosing were genes implicated in cell regulation and apoptosis. Modest renal gene expression changes were observed at day 30 in rats treated with CdCl 2. These results indicate that kidney may be a susceptible target for subtle long-lasting molecular alterations produced by cadmium nanoparticles locally instilled in the lung.

Original languageEnglish
Article number925
JournalJournal of Nanoparticle Research
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Cadmium
  • Intratracheal instillation
  • Microarray
  • Nanoparticles
  • Nanotoxicology
  • Silica
  • Toxicogenomics
  • Translocation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Bioengineering

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