5 years ago

Endocytic pathways involved in PLGA nanoparticle uptake by grapevine cells and role of cell wall and membrane in size selection

Elisa Brasili, Livia Donati, Barbara Baldan, Cleofe Palocci, Gabriella Pasqua, Marco Bramosanti, Alessio Valletta, Laura Chronopoulou


Key message

PLGA NPs’ cell uptake involves different endocytic pathways. Clathrin-independent endocytosis is the main internalization route. The cell wall plays a more prominent role than the plasma membrane in NPs’ size selection.


In the last years, many studies on absorption and cell uptake of nanoparticles by plants have been conducted, but the understanding of the internalization mechanisms is still largely unknown. In this study, polydispersed and monodispersed poly(lactic-co-glycolic) acid nanoparticles (PLGA NPs) were synthesized, and a strategy combining the use of transmission electron microscopy (TEM), confocal analysis, fluorescently labeled PLGA NPs, a probe for endocytic vesicles (FM4-64), and endocytosis inhibitors (i.e., wortmannin, ikarugamycin, and salicylic acid) was employed to shed light on PLGA NP cell uptake in grapevine cultured cells and to assess the role of the cell wall and plasma membrane in size selection of PLGA NPs. The ability of PLGA NPs to cross the cell wall and membrane was confirmed by TEM and fluorescence microscopy. A strong adhesion of PLGA NPs to the outer side of the cell wall was observed, presumably due to electrostatic interactions. Confocal microscopy and treatment with endocytosis inhibitors suggested the involvement of both clathrin-dependent and clathrin-independent endocytosis in cell uptake of PLGA NPs and the latter appeared to be the main internalization pathway. Experiments on grapevine protoplasts revealed that the cell wall plays a more prominent role than the plasma membrane in size selection of PLGA NPs. While the cell wall prevents the uptake of PLGA NPs with diameters over 50 nm, the plasma membrane can be crossed by PLGA NPs with a diameter of 500–600 nm.

Publisher URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00299-017-2206-0

DOI: 10.1007/s00299-017-2206-0

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