The wonder material graphene has numerous potential applications in nanoelectronics, biomedicine, storage devices, etc. Synthesis of graphene is highly challenging due to the toxic chemicals used and its low yield. In the present study, a facile green route for synthesis of reduced graphene oxide (rGO) was carried out using ascorbic acid as reducing agent. rGO was stabilized using Pluronic P123 polymer to give Pluronic stabilized reduced graphene oxide (rGO-P) and gave superior yield (15 mg graphene oxide yielded ˜13 mg rGO-P). Despite the potential neuroscience applications of graphene, the impending toxicological outcome upon interaction with neurons is not well understood. Here, differentiated PC-12 neuron-like cells exposed to rGO-P showed a dose-dependent cytotoxicity. Membrane disruption and cytoskeletal integrity remained uncompromised after 24 h exposure. Oxidative stress in PC-12 was evident due to an increase in ROS generation in dose and time-dependent manner. In vivo acute toxicity was assessed in mice administered with 10 mg/kg body weight of rGO-P. There were no evident changes in behaviour, motor function or other morphological changes. In conclusion, rGO-P was successfully synthesized and provided superior yield. Even though in vitro toxicity testing showed dose-dependent toxicity, in vivo toxic effect was not apparent.
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School of Environment and Technology