1-phenyl-2-(1-pyrrolidinyl)-1-pentanone (α-PVP) is a new designer drug of the cathinone type. People who have taken drugs containing α-PVP or other synthetic cathinone reportedly lose consciousness, develop difficulty breathing, and at worst case, die. However, the mechanism underlying α-PVP-induced neurotoxicity is unknown. The objective of the present study was to investigate the effect of α-PVP on the central nervous system (CNS) and compare its neurotoxicity with that of methamphetamine (METH) in mice. Balb/c male mice (8 weeks old) were orally administered α-PVP (25 mg/kg) or METH (5 mg/kg). α-PVP induced a significant increase in locomotor activity, which occurred earlier than locomotor activity induced by METH. This increase was inhibited by the D1 receptor antagonist SCH23990 (50 µg/kg, i.p.) and the D2 receptor antagonist sulpiride (50 mg/kg, i.m.). The extracellular concentration of dopamine (DA) in the striatum, determined by in vivo microdialysis increased immediately after α-PVP administration. These results suggest that α-PVP stimulates DA release, causing an increase in locomotor activity, and that this stimulatory effect of α-PVP on CNS is mediated, at least in part, by the D1 and D2 receptors.
The Pig-a mutation assay is becoming one of the major experimental procedures used to assess in vivo genotoxicity. The assay allows simple in vivo analysis and enables gene mutations in the hematopoietic system to be measured using high throughput flow cytometry. Previously, we demonstrated that X-irradiation increased the Pig-a mutant frequencies in red blood cells (RBCs) of mice in a radiation dose-dependent manner. In this study, to understand how RBCs with Pig-a mutation induced by X-irradiation persist, we compared Pig-a mutant frequencies between irradiated C57BL/6J (p53+/+) mice and irradiated p53 homozygous knockout (p53-/-) mice by using the RBC Pig-a assay. After the peak in radiation-induced Pig-a mutant frequencies, a gradual decrease in mutant frequencies in irradiated p53-/-mice was observed, while irradiated p53+/+mice had a rapid decrease, which suggests that RBCs with Pig-a mutation are eliminated normally in irradiated p53+/+mice but not in irradiated p53-/- mice due to lack of p53 function. In addition, we also found that the p53 function affected the regulation of Pig-a mutagenesis in aging mice. Our results suggest that p53 function, distinct types of mutation, and the life span of RBCs play key roles in the persistence of Pig-a mutation in the hematopoietic system of RBCs after irradiation.
We previously showed that nucleotide P2 receptor agonists such as ATP and UTP amplify γ-ray-induced focus formation of phosphorylated histone H2A variant H2AX (γH2AX), which is considered to be an indicator of DNA damage so far, by activating purine P2Y6 and P2Y12 receptors. Therefore, we hypothesized that these P2 receptors play a role in inducing the repair response to γ-ray-induced DNA damage. In the present study, we tested this idea by using human lung cancer A549 cells. First, reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) showed that P2Y6 receptor is highly expressed in A549 cells, but P2Y12 receptor is only weakly expressed. Next, colony formation assay revealed that P2Y6 receptor antagonist MRS2578 markedly reduced the survival rate of γ-ray-exposed A549 cells. The survival rate was also significantly reduced in P2Y6-knock-down cells, compared with scramble siRNA-transfected cells. Since it has reported that phosphorylation of ERK1/2 after activation of EGFR via P2Y6 and P2Y12 receptors is involved in the repair response to γ-ray-induced DNA damage, we next examined whether γ-ray-induced phosphorylation of ERK1/2 was also inhibited by MRS2578 in A549 cells. We found that it was. Taken together, these findings indicate that purinergic signaling through P2Y6 receptor, followed by ERK1/2 activation, promotes the cellular repair response to γ-ray-induced DNA damage.
Exposure to environmental neurotoxic chemicals both in utero and during the early postnatal period can cause neurodevelopmental disorders. To evaluate the disruption of neurodevelopmental programming, we previously established an in vitro neurosphere assay system using rat mesencephalic neural stem cells that can be used to evaluate. Here, we extended the assay system to examine the neurodevelopmental toxicity of the endocrine disruptors butyl benzyl phthalate, di-n-butyl phthalate, dicyclohexyl phthalate, diethyl phthalate, di(2-ethyl hexyl) phthalate, di-n-pentyl phthalate, and dihexyl phthalate at a range of concentrations (0-100 μM). All phthalates tested inhibited cell migration with a linear or non-linear range of concentrations when comparing migration distance to the logarithm of the phthalate concentrations. On the other hand, some, but not all, phthalates decreased the number of proliferating cells. Apoptotic cells were not observed upon phthalate exposure under any of the conditions tested, whereas the dopaminergic toxin rotenone induced significant apoptosis. Thus, we were able to classify phthalate toxicity based on cell migration and cell proliferation using the in vitro neurosphere assay.
The psychoactive recreational drug 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) is widely abused. The fact that MDMA induces neurotoxic damage in serotonergic nerve endings is well known. However, the effects of MDMA on pregnant and neonatal animals remain unknown. Therefore, we studied the effects of gestational exposure to MDMA on birth, growth, and behavior of pups. Female BALB/c mice were orally administered either water (10 ml/kg) or MDMA (20 mg/10 ml/kg) from gestational day 1 to postnatal day (P) 21. MDMA did not affect the birth rate, but the survival rate of the pups significantly decreased. A significant reduction in body weight gain was observed in pups from MDMA-administered dams during P3-P21. Maternal MDMA treatment caused an attenuated cliff avoidance reaction and decreased motor function in the pups, as determined by the wire hanging test. These results suggest that MDMA treatment during pregnancy and lactation causes growth retardation and dysfunction of motor neurons in mouse pups.
To clarify the relationship between arginine metabolism and hepatic injury, metabolomic analysis was performed in rats treated with 3 representative hepatotoxicants, monocrotaline (MCT), concanavalin A (ConA), and α-naphthyl isothiocyanate (ANIT); or a myotoxicant, tetramethyl-p-phenylenediamine (TMPD). A single dose of MCT, ConA, or ANIT dose-dependently induced hepatocellular necrosis accompanied by decreased blood arginine and increased blood alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and arginase. A close correlation was detected between arginine and ALT (r = -0.746, -0.795, -0.787 for MCT, ConA, ANIT, respectively) or between arginine and arginase (r = -0.605, -0.808, -0.672 for MCT, ConA, ANIT, respectively) in all three hepatic injury models. In contrast, neither hepatocellular necrosis nor alterations in arginine were found in the skeletal muscle injury model, although ALT was slightly increased. An in vitro assay revealed that blood samples obtained from ConA-treated rats transformed external arginine to ornithine, and the reaction was totally inhibited by an arginase inhibitor. These results suggest that blood arginase plays a crucial role in arginine metabolism associated with hepatic injury. In metabolomic analysis, nearly 450 endogenous metabolites were identified in blood obtained from all the models. Among the 13 metabolites involved in arginine metabolism, decreased arginine and increased ornithine occurred in common in the hepatic injury models, whereas citrulline and other metabolites were not altered. These results indicate that arginine metabolism, especially the arginine-to-ornithine pathway, is altered in association with acute hepatic injury. Furthermore, blood arginine and ornithine are possibly specific biomarkers for hepatic injury.
Toxic chemicals often induce reactive oxygen species (ROS). Although one of the most abundant ROS-sensitive proteins is in the peroxiredoxin (Prx) family, the function of Prx proteins is poorly understood because they are inactivated under high concentrations of hydrogen peroxide. Like mammalian cells, the model eukaryote Saccharomyces cerevisiae possesses multiple Prx proteins. Among the five Prx family proteins, Tsa1 and Ahp1 have the highest and second-highest expression levels, respectively. Here, we focused on a previously uncharacterized phenotype resulting from Tsa1 loss: impaired growth during the late exponential phase. We overexpressed catalase (CTT1) and Ahp1 in cells with disruptions in TSA1 and its homologue, TSA2 (tsa1/2Δ cells), and we found that neither Ctt1 nor Ahp1 overexpression suppressed the impaired cell growth at the stationary phase, although the ROS levels were successfully suppressed. Furthermore, the cell cycle profile was not altered by Tsa1/2 loss, at least in the late exponential phase; however, the glucose consumption rate slowed in the late exponential phase. Our results suggest that ROS levels are not responsible for the growth phenotype. Tsa1 might have a specific function that could not be replaced by Ahp1.
Heat shock protein 90 (Hsp90) is a constitutively expressed molecular chaperone and plays an important role in the folding of client proteins with key regulatory roles in growth, survival, differentiation and metastasis. Because inhibition of Hsp90 degrades multiple oncogenic client proteins, it is considered to be an attractive anticancer therapy, and clinical trials of several Hsp90 inhibitors have been carried out. In the present study, two structurally distinct Hsp90 inhibitors, CH5164840 and CH5449302, were orally administered to beagle dogs to evaluate systemic toxicity. CH5164840 induced symptoms that suggest visual disorder, and ophthalmological observation and electroretinography (ERG) revealed loss of pupillary light reflex and abnormal waveforms, respectively. Histopathological examination showed changes in the photoreceptor cell layer and the outer nuclear layer of retina. On the other hand, while there were no clinical symptoms related to visual disorder, animals treated with CH5449302 showed similar abnormalities of ERG responses and histopathological changes in the photoreceptor cell layer and the outer nuclear layer of retina. The visual symptoms and abnormalities of ERG responses were noted at an earlier stage or lower dose than other toxicities in both compounds. Considering that two structurally distinct Hsp90 inhibitors induced a retinal toxicity in dogs after repeated administration, and that visual disorders were also reported in some clinical trials of Hsp90 inhibitors, it would seem highly likely that Hsp90 inhibition induces retinal toxicity. Also, our study indicated that a detailed ocular examination to evaluate the safety of Hsp90 inhibitors would be useful in both preclinical and clinical studies.
A reproducible method for monitoring traces of cholinesterase (ChE) inhibitors in acetonitrile extracts from fruits and vegetables is described. The method is based on hypochlorite oxidation and ChE inhibition assay. Four common representative samples of produce were selected from a supermarket to investigate the effect of different matrices on pesticides recoveries and assay precision. The samples were extracted with acetonitrile to prepare them for ChE inhibition assays: if necessary, clean-up was performed using dispersive solid-phase extraction for gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC/MS) analyses. Chlorine was tested as an oxidising reagent for the conversion of thiophosphorus pesticides (P=S compounds) into their P=O analogues, which have high ChE-inhibiting activity. Chlorine consumption of individual acetonitrile extracts was determined and was strongly dependent on the individual types of fruits and vegetables. After treating the acetonitrile extracts with an excess hypochlorite at 25°C for 15 min, the ChE-inhibiting activities and detection limits for each chlorine-treated pesticide solution were determined. Matrix composition did not interfere significantly with the determination of the pesticides. Enhanced anti-ChE activities leading to low detection limits (ppb levels) were observed for the chlorine-treated extracts that were spiked with chlorpyrifos, diazinon, fenitrothion, and isoxathion. This combination of oxidative derivatisation and ChE inhibition assays was used successfully to monitor and perform semi-quantitative determination of ChE inhibitors in apple, tomato, cucumber, and strawberry samples.
Parabens, which are a homologous series of esters of p-hydroxybenzoic acid, have been used as preservatives in cosmetics, medicines and foods because of their antimicrobial activity. However, parabens in cosmetics have been suspected to cause allergic contact dermatitis. In this study, we examined paraben-induced histamine release from rat peritoneal mast cells and skin reaction in guinea pigs using a series of 17 parabens with different alcohol side chains, ranging from methylparaben to dodecylparaben. Octylparaben showed the greatest histamine release-inducing activity from mast cells, and the activity was decreased in shorter- and longer-side-chain parabens. Octyl benzoate, octyl o-hydroxybenzoate and phenyloctane caused no significant degranulation of mast cells, whereas octyl m-hydroxybenzoate, octyl p-hydroxybenzoate and octyl phenol induced concentration-related degranulation. Metabolites of these parabens (p-hydroxybenzoic acid and alcohols) did not show histamine release-inducing activity. In the guinea pig skin reaction test, heptylparaben induced a typical strong skin reaction, while butylparaben induced a typical weak skin reaction, and methylparaben and dodecylparaben were inactive. Metabolites of parabens (p-hydroxybenzoic acid and alcohols) were also inactive. These results indicate that interaction of parabens with rat mast cells requires a minimum length and adequate lipophilicity of the alkyl side chain. Since metabolites of parabens were inactive, parabens appear to be direct-acting allergens.
Background & Aims Cadmium (Cd) is a widespread environmental contaminant that causes both renal tubulopathy and osteomalacia. Osteomalacia is thought to be a result of renal tubulopathy, but there are few studies about the histopathological relationship between the two pathoses. Therefore, in the present study, we examined specimens from cases of itai-itai disease (IID), the most severe form of chronic cadmium poisoning, to evaluate the relationship between them. Methods We analyzed kidney and bone specimens of 61 IID cases and the data regarding Cd concentration in kidney and bone. Tubulopathy was graded on the basis of a three-step scale (mild, moderate, and severe) using the following three items: the degree of proximal tubular defluxion, thickness of renal cortex, and weight of the kidney. Osteomalacia was evaluated using the relative osteoid volume (ROV). Results There were 15 cases of mild, 19 cases of moderate, and 27 cases of severe tubulopathy. The average ROV was 24.9 ± 2.0%. ROV tended to increase as tubulopathy advanced in severity, and ROV was significantly higher in cases with severe tubulopathy than those with mild or moderate tubulopathy. ROV had a negative correlation with Cd concentration in the kidney but no correlation with that in the bone. Conclusions Our results suggest that the development of osteomalacia was related to the development of tubulopathy.
Perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs) are environmental contaminants that have received attention because of their possible effects on wildlife and human health. In order to obtain initial risk information on the toxicity of perfluoroundecanoic acid (PFUA), we conducted a combined repeated dose toxicity study with the reproduction/developmental toxicity screening test (OECD test guideline 422). PFUA was administered by gavage to rats at 0 (vehicle: corn oil), 0.1, 0.3 or 1.0 mg/kg/day. At 1.0 mg/kg/day, body weight gain was inhibited in both sexes, and there was a decrease in fibrinogen in both sexes and shortening of the activated partial thromboplastin time in males. An increase in blood urea nitrogen and a decrease in total protein in both sexes and increases in alkaline phosphatase and alanine transaminase and a decrease in albumin in males were observed at 1.0 mg/kg/day. Liver weight was increased in males at 0.3 mg/kg/day and above and in females at 1.0 mg/kg/day, and this change was observed after a recovery period. In both sexes, centrilobular hypertrophy of hepatocytes was observed at 0.3 mg/kg/day and above and focal necrosis was observed at 1.0 mg/kg/day. In reproductive/developmental toxicity, body weight of pups at birth was lowered and body weight gain at 4 days after birth was inhibited at 1.0 mg/kg/day, while no dose-related changes were found in the other parameters. Based on these findings, the no observed adverse effect levels (NOAELs) for the repeated dose and reproductive/developmental toxicity were considered to be 0.1 mg/kg/day and 0.3 mg/kg/day, respectively.
Sodium iron chlorophyllin (SIC), a water-soluble chlorophyll derivative, has been used as a food additive for green coloration. In the present study, a subchronic toxicity study of SIC was performed in male and female F344 rats with oral administration in diet at concentrations of 0%, 0.2%, 1.0%, and 5.0% for 13 weeks. No mortalities, abnormal clinical signs, and hematological changes were observed in any of the groups during the experiment. Significant reduction of body weight gain was noted in 5.0% males. In serum biochemistry, serum transferrin levels were significantly increased in 5.0% males and females. Relative spleen weights of both sexes were markedly reduced with 5.0% SIC as compared to the controls, and absolute weights of spleen were also significantly decreased in males. On histopathological assessment, diffuse hypertrophy of acinar cells in the parotid gland was observed in all examined 5.0% males and females, but not in the other groups. Based on the histopathology of the parotid glands, the no-observed-adverse-effect level (NOAEL) of SIC in the present study was estimated to be 1.0% (609 mg/kg bw/day for males and 678 mg/kg bw/day for females).
In Thailand, DDT was banned for agriculture use in 1983 and for malaria vector control in 1999. However, contamination by DDT and its primary metabolite, p,p´-DDE remains serious environmental and human health concerns. The main focus of this study were i) to investigate serum concentrationsof p,p´-DDE and p,p´-DDT as exposure biomarkers for potential adverse health effect in adult Thai residents and ii) to compare the associations of BMI, thyroid hormones, cholesterol, triglycerides and fasting blood sugar levels in human serum with the concentrations of these pesticides. In a total of 1,137 participants were measured blood serum for analyses of p,p´-DDE and p,p´-DDT. The geometric mean concentration (95% confidence interval) for serum total p,p´-DDE concentration was 1,539 (1,242-1,837) ng/g lipid and 1,547 (1,293-1,806) ng/g lipid in adult males and females, respectively. Furthermore, the total amount of serum p,p´-DDE concentration significantly correlated with plasma glucose levels. Neither p,p´-DDE nor p,p´-DDT was significantly associated with serum thyroid hormones levels. Additionally, the high p,p´-DDE/DDT ratio indicates that the exposure is due past rather than recent use of DDT.
Indole-3-carbinol (I3C) and phenobarbital (PB) are cytochrome P450 (CYP) 1A and CYP2B inducers, respectively, and have liver tumor-promoting effects in rats. In this study, we investigated the modifying effects on tumor promotion by I3C and PB co-administration. Six-week-old male F344 rats received a single intraperitoneal injection of N-diethylnitrosamine for initiation treatment. Two weeks after the initiation, rats were given no tumor-promoting agents (DEN alone), I3C (2,500 or 5,000 ppm in diet), PB (60 or 120 ppm in drinking water), or 2,500 ppm I3C + 60 ppm PB for 6 weeks. One week after the I3C/PB treatments, all animals underwent a two-thirds partial hepatectomy. The number and area of liver cell foci positive for glutathione S-transferase placental form (GST-P+ foci) were not significantly fluctuated in the PB+I3C group in the isoadditive statistical model. On the contrary, the mRNA levels of Cyp2b1/2 and Nqo1 were suppressed and enhanced, respectively, in the PB+I3C group in the isoadditive model, but there was no enhancement in the microsomal reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, thiobarbituric acid-reactive substance levels, and Ki-67+ cell ratio in this group. The results suggest that the co-administration of I3C and PB causes no modifying effects in liver tumor promotion in rats.
Usefulness of bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) and pleural cavity lavage fluid (PLF) as an experimental material was evaluated for the assessment of pulmonary toxicity of chemicals in rats. From the viewpoint of safety, isoflurane can be used for euthanasia/anesthesia because there was no difference in biological properties of BALF between diethyl ether and isoflurane. Here, we also recognized phosphate buffered saline (PBS) and distilled water equally as a solvent/vehicle for negative control. PLF is also provided as a useful target material as well as BALF for assessing chemical lung toxicity. To evaluate the method, we used zinc chloride as a model chemical and obtained the expected and satisfied results. We may conclude that the intratracheal treatment and combination usage of BALF and PLF as a target material is a good method for assessment of chemical pulmonary (lung and plural cavity) toxicity in rats.
We developed a new local lymph node assay (LLNA) that includes the elicitation phase termed LLNA:DAE for discrimination of borderline-positive chemicals as classified by the LLNA modified by Daicel based on ATP content (LLNA:DA) and for cross-sensitization testing. Although the LLNA:DA method could help identify skin sensitizers, some skin irritants classified as non-sensitizers by the LLNA were classified as borderline positive. In addition, the evaluation for the cross-sensitization potential between chemicals was impossible. In the LLNA:DAE procedure, test group of mice received four applications of chemicals on the dorsum of the right ear for induction and one application on the dorsum of the left ear for elicitation. Control group of mice received one chemical application on the dorsum of the left ear. We evaluated the sensitizing potential by comparing the weights of the lymph nodes from the left ears between the two groups. The results of using the LLNA:DAE method to examine 24 chemicals, which contained borderline-positive chemicals, were consistent with those from the LLNA method, except for nickel chloride (NiCl2). Two chemical pairs, 2,4-dinitrochlorobenzene (DNCB) with 2,4-dinitrofluorobenzene (DNFB) and hydroquinone (HQ) with p-benzoquinone (p-BQ), showed clear cross-sensitization with each other, while another chemical pair, DNFB with hexylcinnamic aldehyde (HCA) did not. Taken together, our results suggest that the LLNA:DAE method is useful for discriminating borderline-positive chemicals and for determining chemical cross-sensitization.
Skin sensitization resulting in allergic contact dermatitis is a common occupational health issue. In this study, the effect of mixing two skin sensitizers on the skin sensitization response was investigated. Skin sensitizers are generally classified into T helper type 1 (Th1) or T helper type 2 (Th2), depending on the induced cytokine profile. Dinitrochlorobenzene (DNCB) and oxazolone (Oxa) are Th1 skin sensitizers and phthalic anhydride (PA) and toluene diisocyanate (TDI) are Th2 skin sensitizers. We investigated the effect on skin sensitization response to mixtures of three pairs of these sensitizers: DNCB and Oxa, DNCB and PA, and PA and TDI, using guinea pig maximization test and mouse ear swelling test. In guinea pigs sensitized with the mixture of DNCB and Oxa or PA and TDI, there were changes of skin sensitization response to DNCB and Oxa, and that to PA. On the other hand, there was no mixture effect in guinea pigs sensitized with the mixture of DNCB and PA. The skin sensitization responses were decreased in mice sensitized with the mixtures of DNCB and Oxa or PA and TDI, whereas the mixture effect was not observed in mice sensitized with the mixture of DNCB and PA. The present findings revealed that mixture effect on the skin sensitization response was observed after simultaneous exposure to two skin sensitizers, and the effect was determined by combinations of mixed skin sensitizers.
We compared the cadmium (Cd) concentration in the liver and kidney of different strains of mice after exposure to 50 ppm Cd for 30 days via drinking water. Cd concentration in the liver and kidney of C57BL/6J mice were higher than those of 129/Sv and DBA/2 mice. Since orally ingested heavy metals are absorbed in the small intestine and then widely distributed to target tissues, microarray analyses were performed to compare the expression levels of transport-related genes in the duodenum between C57BL/6J mice and 129/Sv or DBA/2 mice. The expression levels of 9 and 11 genes were elevated more than 2.0-fold and 13 and 12 genes were reduced less than 0.5-fold in 129/Sv mice and DBA/2 mice, respectively. Among these low expressed genes, 10 genes (Slc2a2, Slc5a1, Slc16a2, Slc22a13, Slc22a18, Slc25a11, Slc36a1, Slco6c1, Abca3 and Abcd1) were common between the two types of strains. These results suggest that some of those genes might be involved in Cd absorption and its toxicity.
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