2013 Volume 38 Issue 5 Pages 775-782
Emerging evidence suggests that chronic exposure to DDT and its derivatives is associated with a variety of human disorders such as anemia. The present study demonstrated that p,p′-DDT caused microcystic anemia in a dose-dependent manner (0, 5, 50, and 500 ppm) in the long-term study up to 2 years. To elucidate the mechanism(s) by which p,p′-DDT induces anemia, certain hematological parameters were assessed in rats fed specific doses of p,p′-DDT for 2 weeks, and the effect of lipopolysaccharide on anemia of inflammation was also examined in p,p′-DDT-treated rats. The parameters included the content of hemoglobin per reticulocyte, mean corpuscular volume of reticulocytes and mature erythrocytes, corpuscular hemoglobin concentration mean of mature erythrocytes, and saturation levels of transferrin and iron. During the 2-week treatment period, hypochromic microcytic reticulocytes and hypochromic normocytic mature erythrocytes were observed in p,p′-DDT-treated rats, with no evidence of alteration in plasma iron levels. p,p′-DDT enhanced microcytosis of reticulocytes, as well as mature erythrocytes, which occurred due to severe hypoferremia resulting from anemia of inflammation; however, plasma iron levels were attenuated probably through the inhibition of interleukin-6. Our data suggests that long-term treatment with p,p′-DDT induces microcytic anemia, possibly because of the impairment of iron utility in erythrocytes.