Enhanced production of reactive oxygen species by gadolinium oxide nanoparticles under core-inner-shell excitation by proton or monochromatic X-ray irradiation: implication of the contribution from the interatomic de-excitation-mediated nanoradiator effect to dose enhancement.
Seo S-J., Han S-M., Cho J-H., Hyodo K., Zaboronok A., You H., Peach K., Hill MA., Kim J-K.
Core-inner-valence ionization of high-Z nanoparticle atomic clusters can de-excite electrons through various interatomic de-excitation processes, thereby leading to the ionization of both directly exposed atoms and adjacent neutral atoms within the nanoparticles, and to an enhancement in photon-electron emission, which is termed the nanoradiator effect. To investigate the nanoradiator-mediated dose enhancement in the radio-sensitizing of high-Z nanoparticles, the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) was measured in a gadolinium oxide nanoparticle (Gd-oxide NP) solution under core-inner-valence excitation of Gd with either 50 keV monochromatic synchrotron X-rays or 45 MeV protons. This measurement was compared with either a radiation-only control or a gadolinium-chelate magnetic resonance imaging contrast agent solution containing equal amounts of gadolinium as the separate atomic species in which Gd-Gd interatomic de-excitations are absent. Ionization excitations followed by ROS measurements were performed on nanoparticle-loaded cells or aqueous solutions. Both photoexcitation and proton impact produced a dose-dependent enhancement in the production of ROS by a range of factors from 1.6 to 1.94 compared with the radiation-only control. Enhanced production of ROS, by a factor of 1.83, was observed from Gd-oxide NP atomic clusters compared with the Gd-chelate molecule, with a Gd concentration of 48 μg/mL in the core-level photon excitation, or by a factor of 1.82 under a Gd concentration of 12 μg/mL for the proton impact at 10 Gy (p < 0.02). The enhanced production of ROS in the irradiated nanoparticles suggests the potential for additional therapeutic dose enhancements in radiation treatment via the potent Gd-Gd interatomic de-excitation-driven nanoradiator effect.