Polydopamine-coated FeCo nanocubes (PDFCs) were successfully synthesized and tested under microwave irradiation of 2.45 GHz frequency and 0.86 W/cm2 power. These particles were found to be non-toxic in the absence of irradiation, but gained significant toxicity upon irradiation. Interestingly, no increase in relative heating rate was observed when the PDFCs were irradiated in solution, eliminating nanoparticle (NP)-induced thermal ablation as the source of toxicity. Based on these studies, we propose that microwave-induced redox processes generate the observed toxicity. © 2015 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.