Date of Award

Spring 2015

Document Type


First Advisor

Fakayode,Sayo O.


Pesticides, weed control chemicals, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are cytotoxic, carcinogenic, and toxic chemicals of concern. The toxic effects and health related issues of PAHs in humans necessitate the urgent need to investigate the binding mechanism of PAHs with biological specimen for biomedical diagnosis. This study investigated the binding of three PAHs (anthracene, pyrene, and naphthalene) with human serum albumin (HSA) and bovine serum albumin (BSA), proteins responsible for the delivery of drug molecules and other important metabolites to various targets. Specifically, the influence of the temperature, PAH type, and PAH concentrations on HSA/BSA emission property was investigated. The binding constant (K) and stoichiometry of PAH-HSA/BSA complexes were also determined from the emission data using a modified Stern-Volmer equation. The thermodynamic properties (Gibbs free energy (ΔG), enthalpy (ΔH), and entropy (ΔS)) of PAH-BSA/HSA complexation were also determined from emission data using Van’t Hoff equation. The emission spectra, the calculated K and thermodynamic parameters of PAH-HSA/BSA complexation were found to be PAH and temperature dependent. The large values of the calculated binding constant and ΔG indicated high affinity and strong bindings of PAH with HSA/BSA. The influence of PAHs on triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) cells viability was further investigated. The result of cytotoxicity suggested that the viability of TNBC cells is PAH and concentration dependent.