Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Ellen C. England, PhD


For the last decade or so, in vitro toxicology has been studied as a method for determining human toxicity, as well as hazard identification and characterization. One purpose of in vitro studies is to determine the possibility of developing systems in which the toxicity of chemicals can be quantified, without heavy reliance on animal experimentation. Specific data pertaining to cadmium toxicity in humans through use of in vitro methods and models is sparse, at best. There is a need to complete more studies and collect more data to study particular chemicals and their effects and to complete proper evaluation and comparison to in vitro studies on human cells. The need for such data is the overall reason for this thesis research and experimentation. Toxicology in vitro refers to a method of exposing cell tissue directly to the chemical compound under study. In this research, rat liver cells, or hepatocytes, were cultured, exposed to cadmium oxide particles, and analyzed with an MTT assay. Experiments were carried out with doses ranging from 0.001 μg/mL to 2.5 μg/mL for 6, 12, and 24 hours. Two cell densities were also studied for each experiment, 1,000,000 cells/mL and 500,000 cells/mL, in order to ascertain the effects of toxicity on cell density. The research led to the conclusion 1,000,000 cells/mL is more resistant to the toxicant than 500,000 cells/mL and the toxicant is most toxic to the cells after 24 hours.

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