Inhibition of Cancer Cell Proliferation by Carbon Dots Derived from Date Pits at Low-Dose

Yingqiu Xie, Olena Filchakova, Qing Yang, Yerkebulan Yesbolatov, Darkhan Tursynkhan, Aishabibi Kassymbek, Mohamed Bouhrara, Kunjie Wang, Mannix Balanay, Haiyan Fan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Water-soluble fluorescent carbon dots (C-dots) were synthesized through hydrothermal process using date pits pre-treated with phosphoric acid as a carbon source. Transmission electron microscopy showed that the C-dots have an average particle size of 1.1 ± 0.3 nm with a very narrow size distribution. The aqueous solution or the phosphate buffer solution (PBS) of as prepared C-dots exhibits strong fluorescence when excited at 338 nm. The PBS solution of the as prepared C-dots can inhibit growth by as much as 61% as well as migration of human lung cancer (A549), breast cancer (MCF-7) and prostate cancer (PC3) cells at the concentration of 0.1 mg/ml. However, only 14% inhibition was observed for kidney (HEK293) cells at the same dose. In addition, the application of C-dots was found to lead to the increase in thickness of the actin stress fiber, which may inhibit cell migration dynamics. Thus, nanomaterials such as date pits-derived C-dots may be applied as anti-cancer agents.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4079-4083
Number of pages5
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2017


  • Bioimaging
  • Cancer cells
  • Cell inhibition
  • Cell migration
  • Natural carbon dots

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)

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