Cytotoxicity of 1-alkylquinolinium bromide ionic liquids in murine fibroblast NIH 3T3 cells

Martin McLaughlin, Martyn Earle, Manuela Gilea, Brendan Gilmore, Sean Gorman, Kenneth Seddon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


Minimal toxicity data are available for 1-alkylquinolinium bromide ionic liquids. Here, their toxicity to NIH 3T3 murine fibroblast cells, of relevance to their potential antimicrobial application, is presented. Toxicity data, presented by time-point analysis with a particular focus on the immediate toxicity upon short term cellular exposure, indicate a link between the length of the alkyl chain substituent and resultant biological toxicity. 1-Tetradecylquinolinium bromide was found to exhibit cellular toxicity comparable to benzalkonium chloride over all time points tested. By comparison, 1-octylquinolinium bromide initially exerted significantly lower cytotoxicity at one hour; however, toxicity was found to have a cumulative effect over time-course analysis up to three days. This illustrates that alkyl chain components may govern not only overall toxicity, but also the rate of toxicity. Fluorescence microscopy was utilised to examine destabilisation of the plasma membrane by 1 tetradecylquinolinium bromide and benzalkonium chloride after one hour, with membrane destabilisation not observed for 1-octylquinolinium bromide, or the base constituent quinoline.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2794-2800
Number of pages10
JournalGreen Chemistry
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Pollution


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