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Title: Oligomer nanoparticle release from polylactic acid plastics catalysed by gut enzymes triggers acute inflammation
Authors: Wang, Mengjing
Li, Qianqian
Shi, Changzhi
Lv, Jia
Xu, Youdong
Yang, Junjie
Chua, Shae Linn
Jia, Linran
Chen, Huaiwen
Liu, Qian
Huang, Changjin
Huang, Yichao
Chen, Jianmin
Fang, Mingliang
Keywords: Engineering::Environmental engineering
Issue Date: 2023
Source: Wang, M., Li, Q., Shi, C., Lv, J., Xu, Y., Yang, J., Chua, S. L., Jia, L., Chen, H., Liu, Q., Huang, C., Huang, Y., Chen, J. & Fang, M. (2023). Oligomer nanoparticle release from polylactic acid plastics catalysed by gut enzymes triggers acute inflammation. Nature Nanotechnology, 18(4), 403-411.
Project: 04MNP000567C120
Journal: Nature Nanotechnology
Abstract: The health risks of exposure to 'eco-friendly' biodegradable plastics of anthropogenic origin and their effects on the gastrointestinal tract are largely unknown. Here we demonstrate that the enzymatic hydrolysis of polylactic acid microplastics generated nanoplastic particles by competing for triglyceride-degrading lipase during gastrointestinal processes. Nanoparticle oligomers were formed by hydrophobically driven self-aggregation. In a mouse model, polylactic acid oligomers and their nanoparticles bioaccumulated in the liver, intestine and brain. Hydrolysed oligomers caused intestinal damage and acute inflammation. A large-scale pharmacophore model revealed that oligomers interacted with matrix metallopeptidase 12. Mechanistically, high binding affinity (Kd = 13.3 μmol l-1) of oligomers to the catalytic zinc-ion finger domain led to matrix metallopeptidase 12 inactivation, which might mediate the adverse bowel inflammatory effects after exposure to polylactic acid oligomers. Biodegradable plastics are considered to be a solution to address environmental plastic pollution. Thus, understanding the gastrointestinal fates and toxicities of bioplastics will provide insights into potential health risks.
ISSN: 1748-3387
DOI: 10.1038/s41565-023-01329-y
Schools: School of Civil and Environmental Engineering 
School of Materials Science and Engineering 
School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering 
Rights: © 2023 The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Limited. All rights reserved.
Fulltext Permission: none
Fulltext Availability: No Fulltext
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