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Food additive zinc oxide (ZnO) nanoparticles (NPs) are widely used as a Zn supplement in the food and agriculture industries. However, ZnO NPs are directly added to complex food-matrices and orally taken through the gastrointestinal (GI) tract where diverse matrices are present. Hence, the dissolution properties, interactions with bio- or food-matrices, and the ionic/particle fates of ZnO NPs in foods and under physiological conditions can be critical factors to understand and predict the biological responses and oral toxicity of ZnO NPs. In this review, the solubility of ZnO NPs associated with their fate in foods and the GI fluids, the qualitative and quantitative determination on the interactions between ZnO NPs and bio- or food-matrices, the approaches for the fate determination of ZnO NPs, and the interaction effects on the cytotoxicity and oral toxicity of ZnO NPs are discussed. This information will be useful for a wide range of ZnO applications in the food industry at safe levels.


Su-Min Youn, Soo-Jin Choi. Food Additive Zinc Oxide Nanoparticles: Dissolution, Interaction, Fate, Cytotoxicity, and Oral Toxicity. International journal of molecular sciences. 2022 May 28;23(11)

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PMID: 35682753

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