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A Different Protein Corona Cloaks “True-to-Life” Nanoplastics with Respect to Synthetic Polystyrene Nanobeads

submitted on 26.04.2021, 20:47 and posted on 28.04.2021, 13:25 by Serena Ducoli, Stefania Federici, Roland Nicsanu, Andrea Zendrini, Claudio Marchesi, Lucia Paolini, Annalisa Radeghieri, Paolo Bergese, Laura Eleonora Depero
Given the complexity of separating nanoplastics from environmental samples, studies have usually been conducted using synthetic polystyrene nanobeads. By mechanical fragmentation in cryogenic conditions of daily-life plastic items, we produced “true-to-life” nanoplastics (T2LNPs), that promises to give a true insight into the interaction with biological systems. T2LNPs have been fully characterized by Fourier transform Infrared spectroscopy and by Atomic Force Microscopy. They result in populations of spheroidal nanoparticles with a broad multimodal size distribution. The mandatory need for a representative sample to evaluate the potential effects of nanoparticles on human health and the environment is demonstrated by the different protein corona identified on T2LNPs and synthetic polystyrene nanobeads upon incubation with human plasma.


PON “R&I” 2014-2020: SIRIMAP—SIstemi di Rilevamento dell’Inquinamento MArino da Plastiche e successivo recupero-riciclo (No. ARS01_01183, CUP D86C18000520008)

National Interuniversity Consortium of Materials Science and Technology (INSTM) through internal funds


Email Address of Submitting Author


University of Brescia



ORCID For Submitting Author


Declaration of Conflict of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.