Effect of zinc oxide nanoparticles on dams and embryo–fetal development in rats

Jeong Sup Hong, Myeong Kyu Park, Min Seok Kim, Jeong Hyeon Lim, Gil Jong Park, Eun Ho Maeng, Jae Ho Shin, Yu Ri Kim, Meyoung Kon Kim, Jong Kwon Lee, Jin A. Park, Jong Choon Kim, Ho Chul Shin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)


This study investigated the potential adverse effects of zinc oxide nanoparticles (ZnOSM20[-] NPs; negatively charged, 20 nm) on pregnant dams and embryo–fetal development after maternal exposure over the period of gestational days 5–19 with Sprague Dawley rats. ZnOSM20(-) NPs were administered to pregnant rats by gavage at 0 mg/kg/day, 100 mg/kg/day, 200 mg/kg/day, and 400 mg/kg/day. All dams were subjected to caesarean section on gestational day 20, and all the fetuses were examined for external, visceral, and skeletal alterations. Toxicity in the dams manifested as significantly decreased body weight at 400 mg/kg/day and decreased liver weight, and increased adrenal glands weight at 200 mg/kg/day and 400 mg/kg/day. However, no treatment-related difference in the number of corpora lutea, the number of implantation sites, the implantation rate (%), resorption, dead fetuses, litter size, fetal deaths, fetal and placental weights, and sex ratio were observed between the groups. Morphological examinations of the fetuses demonstrated no significant difference in the incidences of abnormalities between the groups. No significant difference was found in the Zn content of fetal tissue between the control and high-dose groups. These results showed that a 15-day repeated oral dose of ZnOSM20(-) was minimally maternotoxic at dose of 200 mg/kg/day and 400 mg/kg/day.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)145-157
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Nanomedicine
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Dec 15
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Hong et al.


  • Developmental toxicity
  • Maternal toxicity
  • Nanoparticles
  • Nanotoxicology
  • Teratogenicity
  • Zinc oxide

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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