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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014, Article ID 312901, 9 pages
Research Article

The β-SiC Nanowires (~100 nm) Induce Apoptosis via Oxidative Stress in Mouse Osteoblastic Cell Line MC3T3-E1

1School of Materials Science and Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin 150001, China
2Department of Prosthodontics, School of Stomatology, Harbin Medical University, Harbin 150001, China
3Department of Neurosurgery, The First Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University, Harbin 150001, China
4School of Materials Science and Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology at Weihai, Weihai 264209, China

Received 23 July 2013; Revised 26 November 2013; Accepted 28 November 2013; Published 21 May 2014

Academic Editor: Marcelo Farina

Copyright © 2014 Weili Xie et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Silicon carbide (SiC), a compound of silicon and carbon, with chemical formula SiC, the beta modification (β-SiC), with a zinc blende crystal structure (similar to diamond), is formed at temperature below . β-SiC will be the most suitable ceramic material for the future hard tissue replacement, such as bone and tooth. The in vitro cytotoxicity of β-SiC nanowires was investigated for the first time. Our results indicated that 100 nm long SiC nanowires could significantly induce the apoptosis in MC3T3-E1 cells, compared with 100 μm long SiC nanowires. And 100 nm long SiC nanowires increased oxidative stress in MC3T3-E1 cells, as determined by the concentrations of MDA (as a marker of lipid peroxidation) and 8-OHdG (indicator of oxidative DNA damage). Moreover, transmission electron microscopy (TEM) was performed to evaluate the morphological changes of MC3T3-E1 cells. After treatment with 100 nm long SiC nanowires, the mitochondria were swelled and disintegrated, and the production of ATP and the total oxygen uptake were also decreased significantly. Therefore, β-SiC nanowires may have limitations as medical material.