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Polyhydroxy fullerenes (fullerols or fullerenols): beneficial effects on growth and lifespan in diverse biological models

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Recent toxicological studies on carbon nanomaterials, including fullerenes, have led to concerns about their safety. Functionalized fullerenes, such as polyhydroxy fullerenes (PHF, fullerols, or fullerenols), have attracted particular attention due to their water solubility and toxicity. Here, we report surprisingly beneficial and/or specific effects of PHF on model organisms representing four kingdoms, including the green algae Pseudokirchneriella subcapitata, the plant Arabidopsis thaliana, the fungus Aspergillus niger, and the invertebrate Ceriodaphnia dubia. The results showed that PHF had no acute or chronic negative effects on the freshwater organisms. Conversely, PHF could surprisingly increase the algal culture density over controls at higher concentrations (i.e., 72% increase by 1 and 5 mg/L of PHF) and extend the lifespan and stimulate the reproduction of Daphnia (e.g. about 38% by 20 mg/L of PHF). We also show that at certain PHF concentrations fungal growth can be enhanced and Arabidopsis thaliana seedlings exhibit longer hypocotyls, while other complex physiological processes remain unaffected. These findings may open new research fields in the potential applications of PHF, e.g., in biofuel production and aquaculture. These results will form the basis of further research into the mechanisms of growth stimulation and life extension by PHF.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21637768/

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