Bio-camouflage of Anatase Nanoparticles Explored by In Situ High-Resolution Electron Microscopy

Ana R. Ribeiro, Arijita Mukherjee, Xuan Hu, Shayan Shafien, Reza Ghodsi, Kun He, Sara Gemini-Piperni, Canhui Wang, Robert F. Klie, Tolou Shokuhfar, Reza Shahbazian-Yassar, Radovan Borojevic, Luis A. Rochab, and José M. Granjeiro , 2017


While titanium is the metal of choice for most prothetics and inner body devices due to its superior biocompatability, the discovery of Ti-containing species in the adjacent tissue as the result of wear and corrosion has been associated with autoimmune diseases and premature implant failures. Here, we utilize the in-situ liquid cell transmission electron microscopy (TEM) in a liquid flow holder and graphene liquid cells (GLCs) were used to investigate, for the first time, the in situ nano-bio interactions between titanium dioxide nanoparticles and biological medium. This imaging and spectroscopy methodology showed the process of formation of a ionic and proteic bio-camouflage surrounding Ti dioxide (anatase) nanoparticles that facilitates their internalization by bone cells. The in situ understanding of the mechanisms of formation of the bio-camouflage of anatase nanoparticles may contribute for the definition of strategies aimed to the manipulation of these NPs for bone regenerative purposes.

Impact Statement

A combination of SiN LC-TEM and graphene liquid cells were used to study the morphological changes of titanium dioxide agglomerates in the presence of cell culture media.