Effects of cold atmospheric plasma on viability of breast (MDA-MB-231) and cervical (Hela) cancer cells

There are many reports published about the use of cold atmospheric plasma in cancer treatment recently. In this way, the selective effects of cold plasma on the breast (MDA-MB-231) and cervical (Hela) cancer cells were studied as a new cancer treatment method.

Materials and Methods

In this study, cold atmospheric pressure plasma was generated using a plasma jet reactor and also optical emission spectroscopy (OES) was used to investigate the free radicals produced by the plasma. Futhermore, the effects of helium and helium-oxygen gas mixtures and the time of plasma radiation on the viability of MDA-MB-231 and Hela cells immediately, 24 and 48 hours after radiation were determined by MTT assay. In this account, in order to investigate the selective effects of plasma, direct treatment method was used to evaluate the viability of normal fibroblast cell line.


The results of optical emission spectroscopy showed that decreasing the sample distance from the plasma jet nozzle and increasing operating voltage increased the free radicals produced by plasma. Increasing the time of direct plasma radiation from one to five minutes reduced the vitality of the cancer cells. The most anti-cancer response was observed 48 hours after plasma irradiation and in the helium-oxygen gas mixture. Also, the results showed that cancer cells are more sensitive than normal fibroblast cells to plasma treatment.


According to the promising results of this study, reducing the viability of cancer cells and fewer toxic effect on normal cells, cold plasma therapy can be considered as a new method for cancer therapy.

Article Type:
Research/Original Article
694 - 701
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