Layered double hydroxide (LDH) nanomaterials are currently the focus of intense scientific interest due to their potential application in drug and gene delivery research. However, the emerging field of nanotoxicology requires the development of new and more sensitive methodologies to follow the in vivo delivery kinetics as well as the persistence and bioaccumulation of the LDH carriers subsequent to delivery of the payload to the target area. Radioisotopic labeling offers very high detection sensitivity (<10-14 moles) and straightforward quantitation with respect to other labeling techniques. We have shown that incorporation of naturally occurring Co2+ and Ga 3+ cations into the LDH structure has a negligible effect on the physiochemical properties of the pristine nanoparticles. Radiolabeling through dual isomorphous substitution of 57Co2+ and 67Ga3+ into the LDH structure offers the utility to accurately track and also follow the structural dissolution of these nanomaterials over a range of biologically relevant pHs. Radiolabeled-LDH kinetic release profiles in conjunction with transmission electron microscopy and X-ray diffraction studies have revealed that the bulk dissolution of LDH occurs with no preferential leaching of the 57Co2+ or 67Ga3+ metal species from the crystal structure. Furthermore, the present study clearly demonstrates how radiolabeling methodologies described here may be adapted for use in other similar clay systems and allow for the first time noninvasive imaging and monitoring of the fate of nanoparticles.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films