Effects of green-synthesized silver nanoparticles on lung cancer cells in vitro and grown as xenograft tumors in vivo

Yan He, Zhiyun Du, Shijing Ma, Yue Liu, Dongli Li, Huarong Huang, Sen Jiang, Shupeng Cheng, Wenjing Wu, Kun Zhang, Xi Zheng

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108 Scopus citations


Silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) have now been recognized as promising therapeutic molecules and are extending their use in cancer diagnosis and therapy. This study demonstrates for the first time the antitumor activity of green-synthesized AgNPs against lung cancer in vitro and in vivo. Cytotoxicity effect was explored on human lung cancer H1299 cells in vitro by MTT and trypan blue assays. Apoptosis was measured by morphological assessment, and nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) transcriptional activity was determined by a luciferase reporter gene assay. The expressions of phosphorylated stat3, bcl-2, survivin, and caspase-3 were examined by Western blot analysis. AgNPs showed dose-dependent cytotoxicity and stimulation of apoptosis in H1299 cells. The effects on H1299 cells correlated well with the inhibition of NF-κB activity, a decrease in bcl-2, and an increase in caspase-3 and survivin expression. AgNPs significantly suppressed the H1299 tumor growth in a xenograft severe combined immunodeficient (SCID) mouse model. The results demonstrate the anticancer activities of AgNPs, suggesting that they may act as potential beneficial molecules in lung cancer chemoprevention and chemotherapy, especially for early-stage intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1879-1887
Number of pages9
JournalInternational journal of nanomedicine
StatePublished - 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biophysics
  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery
  • Organic Chemistry


  • Antitumor
  • Cytotoxicity
  • H1299
  • Lung cancer
  • Silver nanoparticles


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