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Fluorescent nanoparticles present in Coca-Cola and Pepsi-Cola: physiochemical properties, cytotoxicity, biodistribution and digestion studies

www.researchgate.net

By Shen Li, Chengkun Jiang, Haitao Wang, Shuang Cong and Mingqian Tan

Abstract

Foodborne nanoparticles (NPs) have drawn great attention due to human health concerns. This study reports the detection of the presence of fluorescent NPs, about 5 nm, in two of the most popular beverages, Coca-Cola (Coke) and Pepsi-Cola (Pepsi). The NPs contain H, C and O, three elements with a tunable emission and with a quantum yield of 3.3 and 4.3% for Coke and Pepsi, respectively. The presence of sp³-hybridized carbon atoms of alcohols and ethers bonds was confirmed by NMR analysis. The NPs can be taken up by living cells and accumulate within cell membrane and cytoplasm.
Evaluation of the acute toxicity of the NPs revealed that the BALB/c mice appeared healthy after administration of a single dose of 2 g kg⁻¹ body weight. Analysis of glutamate pyruvate transaminase (GPT), glutamic oxaloacetic transaminase (GOT), urea and creatinine showed that there were statistically, but not biologically, significant differences in some of these biochemical parameters between the test and control groups. No obvious organ damage or apparent histopathological abnormality was observed in the tested mice. The biodistribution study in major organs indicated that the NPs were easily accumulated in the digestive tract, and they were able to cross the blood–brain barrier and dispersed in the brain. In vitro digestion of the NPs showed a significant fluorescence quenching of the NPs.
This work represents the first report of foodborne fluorescent NPs present in Coke and Pepsi and provides valuable insights into physicochemical properties of these NPs and their toxicity characteristics both in vitro and in vivo.
The button mushroom (Agaricus bisporus), which makes up 70% of total edible fungi, is a sustainable food source and has traditional health benefits [12,13]. It has several medicinal properties such as antioxidant, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antitumor, and anticancer properties [14][15][16][17][18][19] and is a rich nutritional source for proteins, essential amino acids, minerals, vitamins, polysaccharide, and hydrazine derivatives, including agaritine and gyromitrin [15][16][17][18]. Agaritine in A. bisporus has been linked to reducing oxidative stress, but in some studies with mice, it’s been considered a potential carcinogen due to its ability to produce free radicals [17]. …
 Agaritine in A. bisporus has been linked to reducing oxidative stress, but in some studies with mice, it’s been considered a potential carcinogen due to its ability to produce free radicals [17]. Excessive free radicals can damage cells and contribute to neurodegenerative disorders, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and aging [18]. However, the hydrazine derivatives in mushrooms pose no toxicological risk to humans when consumed in normal amounts. …

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