To compare heat generation under an AC magnetic field for inducing cancer cell death, CoFe2O4 and Fe3O4 nanoparticles with a diameter of ∼10 nm were synthesized by hydrolysis in an aqueous solution containing the metal chlorides iron(III) chloride and cobalt(II) or iron(II) chloride, with spermine or N,N'-bis(3-aminopropyl)butane-1,4-diamine, as a base and a protective reagent. Both CoFe2O4 and Fe3O4 nanoparticles were incorporated into human breast cancer MCF-7 cells; the nanoparticles exhibited little toxicity on the cells. When the cells containing nanoparticles were subjected to an AC magnetic field, MCF-7 cell death was induced by heat generated from ∼10-nm CoFe2O4 nanoparticles but not from ∼10-nm Fe3O4 nanoparticles. An increase in coercivity derived from the substitution of Fe2+ with Co2+ facilitated the ability of the nanoparticles to induce cell death in human breast cancer cells under an AC magnetic field.
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