Journal of Chinese Pharmaceutical Sciences ›› 2017, Vol. 26 ›› Issue (6): 395-403.DOI: 10.5246/jcps.2017.06.043

• Original articles •     Next Articles

The impact of Rho GTPases on the cell uptake of single-walled carbon nanohorns

Hongzhe Fu, Jiafang Song, Ge Song, Siyang Song, Zhipu Fan, Anpu Yang, Bing He, Wenbing Dai, Hua Zhang, Xueqing Wang, Qiang Zhang*   

  1. State Key Laboratory of Natural and Biomimetic Drugs, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Peking University Health Science Center, Beijing 100191, China
  • Received:2017-04-28 Revised:2017-05-18 Online:2017-06-29 Published:2017-05-26
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  • Supported by:

    National Basic Research Program of China (973 Program, Grant No. 2015CB932100) and National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 81130059).


Rho GTPases play an important role on the regulation of cytoskeleton, which can affect the cell morphogenesis, cell migration, endocytosis and vesicle transport by controlling the growth and maintenance of microfilaments and microtubules. It has been known that regulation of cell cytoskeleton is inseparable from the cell uptake of nano-medicine or nano-drug delivery systems. However, only few studies have focused on the impacts of Rho GTPases on cell uptake of nano-medicine or nano-drug delivery systems. This study selected single-walled carbon nanohorns (SWCNHs), which have emerged as promising drug delivery systems, to explore the impacts of Rho GTPases on cell uptake of nano-drug delivery systems. SWCNHs were oxidized with concentrated nitric acid and prepared into nano dispersion by ultrasonic dispersion. Confocal laser scanning microscope (CLSM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) were used to observe the cell uptake and intracellular distribution of nanoparticles after incubated A549 cells with the dispersion mentioned above. Mechanism of cell uptake was assessed using various inhibitors. The results showed that the cell uptake of oxSWCNHs was significantly reduced when RhoA was inhibited. The oxSWCNHs were internalized through clathrin-mediated endocytosis and mainly positioned in lysosomes of A549 cells.

Key words: Rho GTPases, Single-walled carbon nanohorns, A549 cells, Cell uptake

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