Plasma-induced selectivity in bone cancer cells death


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Abstract

BackgroundCurrent therapies for bone cancers - either primary or metastatic – are difficult to implement and unfortunately not completely effective. An alternative therapy could be found in cold plasmas generated at atmospheric pressure which have already demonstrated selective anti-tumor action in a number of carcinomas and in more relatively rare brain tumors. However, its effects on bone cancer are still unknown.MethodsHerein, we employed an atmospheric pressure plasma jet (APPJ) to validate its selectivity towards osteosarcoma cell line vs. osteoblasts & human mesenchymal stem cells.ResultsCytotoxicity following direct interaction of APPJ with cells is comparable to indirect interaction when only liquid medium is treated and subsequently added to the cells, especially on the long-term (72 h of cell culture). Moreover, following contact of the APPJ treated medium with cells, delayed effects are observed which lead to 100% bone cancer cell death through apoptosis (decreased cell viability with incubation time in contact with APPJ treated medium from 24 h to 72 h), while healthy cells remain fully viable and unaffected by the treatment.ConclusionsThe high efficiency of the indirect treatment indicates that an important role is played by the reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS) in the gaseous plasma stage and then transmitted to the liquid phase, which overall lead to lethal and selective action towards osteosarcoma cells. These findings open new pathways for treatment of metastatic bone disease with a minimally invasive approach.Graphical abstractHighlightsCold atmospheric pressure plasmas generate various ROS & RNS that can diffuse to liquid media.The plasma treatment unveiled effective lethal and selective action towards osteosarcoma cells.Indirect effects through plasma-treated liquid media point out the important role of the ROS and RNS.Osteosarcoma cells undergo apoptosis following cold plasma treatment.Healthy Mesenchymal Stem Cells and Osteoblasts remain fully viable after the treatment.

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