Ocular biocompatibility evaluation of hydroxyl-functionalized graphene

Mimi Lin, Ruitao Zou, Haiyan Shi, Shanshan Yu, Xiaojian Li, Rui Guo, Lu Yan, Guoxing Li, Yong Liu*, Liming Dai

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


We have presented our recent efforts on genotoxicity and intraocular biocompatibility of hydroxylated graphene (G-OH) prepared by ball milling. We have previously demonstrated that the as-synthesized G-OH could be considered as an excellent alternative for graphene oxide which had been applied widely. Following our last report on G-OH, we carried out detailed studies on genotoxicity and in vivo biocompatibility of G-OH in this work. Less than 5% enhanced caspase-3 level was observed for cells exposed to more than 50 μg/mL G-OH over 72 h, suggesting G-OH caused cell apoptosis was slight. The G-OH induced DNA damage was also found to be mild since expression of p53 and ROS regeneration level was quite low even at high concentration of G-OH over a long time. Cell viability was found to be higher than 90% with 50 μg/mL G-OH and 80% with 100 μg/mL G-OH using flow cytometry. Comet results suggested that less than 5% tail could be found with 100 μg/mL G-OH. TEM results confirmed that G-OH could penetrate into and out of the cytoplasm by means of endocytosis and exocytosis without causing damage on cell membranes. In vivo biocompatibility of G-OH was studied by intravitreal injection of G-OH into rabbits. The ocular fundus photography results showed that G-OH could be diffused in the vitreous body gradually without any damage caused. Injection of G-OH had caused few damages on eyesight related functions such as intraocular pressure, electroretinogram and histological structures of the retina.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)300-308
Number of pages9
JournalMaterials Science and Engineering C
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Caspase-3
  • Comet assay
  • Electroretinography (ERG)
  • Flow cytometry
  • Hydroxyl-functionalized graphene (G-OH)
  • Intraocular pressure (IOP)
  • Reactive oxygen species (ROS)
  • Western blot


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