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Journal of Nanomaterials
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 587021, 10 pages
Research Article

Iron Oxide Magnetic Nanoparticles: Characterization and Toxicity Evaluation by In Vitro and In Vivo Assays

1Carol Davila University of Medicine and Pharmacy, 8 Eroii Sanitari, Sector 5, 050474 Bucharest, Romania
2Emergency Hospital Floreasca, Bucharest 5, Calea Floreasca Nr 8, Sector 1, 014461 Bucarest, Romania
3National Institute of Materials Physics, 105 bis Atomistilor, P.O. Box MG 07, 077125 Bucuresti-Magurele, Romania
4Microbiology Department, Faculty of Biology, University of Bucharest, Aleea Portocalelor 1-3, 60101 Bucharest, Romania

Received 21 August 2013; Revised 4 October 2013; Accepted 5 October 2013

Academic Editor: In-Kyu Park

Copyright © 2013 Alina Mihaela Prodan 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.


The aim of this study was to evaluate the biological properties of iron oxide nanoparticles (IO-NPs) obtained in the aqueous suspension. The iron oxide nanoparticles were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). The biocompatibility of the iron oxide was demonstrated by the in vitro quantification of HeLa cells viability using propidium iodide (PI) and fluorescein diacetate (FdA) and the MTT colorimetric assay. The toxicity of small size iron oxide nanoparticles was also evaluated by means of histological examination on male Brown Norway rats after intraperitoneal injection. At the tested concentrations, the nanoparticles proved to be not cytotoxic on HeLa cells. The rat’s behavior, as well as the histopathological aspect of liver, kidney, lung, and spleen tissues at 48 h after intraperitoneal injection did not present any modifications. The in vivo and in vitro assays suggested that the IO-NPs could be further used for developing new in vivo medical applications.