Mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSNs) represent one of the most promising drug delivery systems. MSNs have attracted considerable attention in recent years both in industry and biomedicine due to their unique properties. Thus, evaluation of the toxic effects of MSNs is necessary before the biomedical and clinical applications. We investigated the in vivo effect of MSNs on the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), antioxidant defenses and histology of the heart and lung. Rats received 25, 50, 100 and 200 mg/kg body weight of synthesized MSNs intraperitoneally for 30 days and samples were collected for analysis. MSNs induced significant increase in serum cardiac function markers, tumor necrosis factor alpha and lipids. MSNs-induced rats exhibited anemia, thrombocytopenia, leukocytosis, significantly increased ROS, malondialdehyde and nitric oxide, and declined antioxidant defenses in the heart and lung of rats. In addition, MSNs induced histological alterations in the heart and lung of rats. In conclusion, our results demonstrated that MSNs induce cardiotoxicity and pulmonary toxicity via excessive generation of ROS, suppressed antioxidants, inflammation and histological alterations. Further investigations are recommended to understand the molecular mechanism underlying the toxic effects of MSNs and to improve the performance of nanomedicine.