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Cytotoxic studies of PEG functionalized ZnO Nanoparticles on MCF-7 cancer cells

C. Rodriguez Martinez, J.E. Ramirez Vick, O. Perales, S.P. Singh
University of Puerto Rico Mayaguez, US

Keywords: ZnO, cytotoxicity, PEG, MCF-7


Nanoparticles have shown great promise in biomedical applications. Zinc oxide (ZnO) nanoparticles are being explored for various applications such as sun screen lotion, antimicrobial properties, advanced textiles, photodynamic therapy and electronic devices. We have synthesized ZnO nanoparticle functionalized with polyethylene glycol (PEG) through hydrogen bonding. Stable suspensions of ZnO nanoparticles were produced in ethanol at room-temperature. The nanoparticle size was controlled by addition of n-heptane at different times, which allowed for quick coagulation. The nanoparticle were then functionalized by mixing with an aqueous solution of PEG (MW = 6,000) under constant stirring for 24hrs. The solution was then centrifuged and lyophilized for characterization. X-ray diffraction (XRD) characterization suggests the formation of wurtzite structure of ZnO and broadening of diffraction peaks indicate the formation of the nanoparticles. FTIR studies clearly indicate the functionalization of the ZnO nanoparticle surface with PEG. UV-visible and photoluminescence measurements exhibit the characteristic optical properties of ZnO and indicate the formation of ZnO nanoparticles. The results on the cellular uptake of these nanoparticles by MCF-7 breast cancer cells and their effect on cell viability will be presented.
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