1 × 106 epithelial cells were plated in a six-well plate in complete medium and treated with lead nitrate, lead nitrate + free SOD-CAT or lead nitrate + PLGA@SOD-CAT for 24 h. The mitochondrial transmembrane potential was determined with the 5,5′,6,6′-tetrachloro-1,1′,3,3′-tetraethyl benzimidazolyl carbocyanine iodide (JC-1) reagent (1:100). After 20 min incubation, the media were removed and washed with PBS. The fluorescence of the JC-1 monomer (green) and aggregate (red) was measured in a confocal laser scanning microscope (FV 3000, Olympus, USA) with excitation/emission settings at 514/529 nm and 585/590 nm, respectively.

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