The Journal of Toxicological Sciences
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Volume 42 , Issue 5
October
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Retraction
  • Hongquan Zhu
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages R1-
    Released: July 26, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Editor’s Announcement


    Protective effect of SENP3-mediated SUMOylation against cadmium toxicity

    Hongquan Zhu

    (The Journal of Toxicological Sciences, 42, 233-240, 2017)


    This article has been retracted due to plagiarism of the following paper recently accepted by the editorial committee:


    Increased SUMO-2/3-ylation mediated by SENP3 degradation is protective against cadmium-induced caspase 3–dependentcytotoxicity by Jia Luo, Sonam Gurung, Laura Lee, Jeremy M Henley, Kevin A Wilkinson, and Chun Guo,The Journal of Toxicological Sciences, 42, 529-538, 2017.


    Accordingly, it shall not be regarded as an original paper. The author has acknowledged his plagiarism, and his apologies have been accepted. The author obtained the manuscript by improper means and submitted it to the journal as his own work. Since the manuscript had not been published yet, the editorial committee was unable to detect the plagiarism.


    Toshiyuki Kaji, Ph.D.
    Editor-in-Chief
    The Journal of Toxicological Sciences

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Original Article
  • Jia Luo, Sonam Gurung, Laura Lee, Jeremy M Henley, Kevin A Wilkinson, ...
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 529-538
    Released: July 26, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Increased post-translational modification of proteins by SUMO-2/3 is a cytoprotective response against cell stress induced by ischaemia and reperfusion. However, it is still unclear what other cell stressors trigger protein SUMOylation, what mechanisms enhance and maintain the enhanced SUMOylation, and if it is a general protective mediator against other cytotoxic stresses. Here, we show increased levels of SUMOylation and decreased levels of the SUMO deconjugating enzyme SENP3 in PC12 cells treated with the toxic heavy metal cadmium. In addition, SENP3 knockdown reduced cadmium-induced caspase 3 cleavage and cell death in PC12 cells, while SENP3 overexpression enhanced cell death. These results suggest that SENP3 is an important regulator of the cellular response to cadmium stress in PC12 cells. Our findings are consistent with previous reports of decreased SENP3 and increased SUMOylation in ischaemia, and imply that the regulation of SENP3 levels and subsequent changes in SUMOylation could be a cytoprotective mechanism against caspase 3-mediated cell death.

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Letter
  • Kyoko Hataoka, Asuka Kaizaki-Mitsumoto, Satoshi Numazawa
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 539-543
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    A synthetic cathinone, 1-phenyl-2-(1-pyrrolidinyl)-1-pentanone (α-PVP), was occasionally found in the “bath salt” type of designer drugs, as an active ingredient. It has been reported that drivers who consumed α-PVP were in an excited state and incapable of controlling their behavior, causing traffic accidents. Despite its acute excitatory effects, there is no information on the psychological dependency elicited by α-PVP use. The purpose of the present study was to clarify whether the reward pathway is activated with repeated doses of α-PVP in experimental animals. Treatment of male C57BL/6j mice with α-PVP (25 mg/kg, i.p.), once a day, for 3 days significantly increased the conditioned place preference scores. Therefore, repeated doses of α-PVP were shown to induce palatability in mice. α-PVP increases extracellular dopamine levels in the nucleus accumbens shell immediately after administration. The number of cells immunopositive for phosphorylated cAMP-regulatory element binding protein (CREB) was significantly increased in the α-PVP-treated mice in our study. These results indicate that the administration of α-PVP activates the phosphorylation of CREB in the nucleus accumbens shell. Our results suggest that α-PVP stimulates the reward pathway by increasing the extracellular dopamine levels and CREB phosphorylation in the nucleus accumbens shell, eventually causing positive reinforcement in mice.

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Letter
  • Kanako Noritake, Toshihiko Aki, Moe Kimura, Takeshi Funakoshi, Kana Un ...
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 545-551
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    We reported previously that when mouse atrium-derived HL-1 cardiomyocytes undergo apoptosis upon exposure to 2% ethanol, the cellular cytoskeleton is severely disrupted and the anti-apoptotic transcriptional co-activator Yes-associated protein (YAP) is inactivated. Consistent with our previous observations, the expression of connective tissue growth factor (CTGF), an anti-apoptotic growth factor and a target of YAP, decreases in a time-dependent manner during exposure to 2% ethanol. The restoration of YAP activation rescues the cells from apoptosis: both the retrovirus-mediated expression of constitutively active YAP and the stabilization of the actomyosin cytoskeleton by jasplakinolide prevent cell death. In contrast, YAP inhibitors have no effect on cell death, confirming the inactivation of YAP in ethanol-exposed cells. Thus, a decrease in actin tension and YAP inactivation should be crucially involved in the cytotoxicity of ethanol on HL-1 cardiomyocytes.

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Letter
  • Tomoya Fujie, Shiori Okino, Eiko Yoshida, Chika Yamamoto, Hiroshi Naka ...
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 553-558
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Recent developments have shown that organic-inorganic hybrid molecules have the potential to provide useful tools for analyzing biological systems. In the case of fibrinolysis, which is the phenomenon whereby fibrin is degraded by plasmin that has been converted from plasminogen via tissue plasminogen activator (t-PA) secreted from vascular endothelial cells, we hypothesized that there may be organic-inorganic hybrid molecules that could be used to analyze the mechanisms by which endothelial fibrinolysis is regulated. In our present study, we found that a copper complex – copper diethyldithiocarbamate (Cu10) – reduces t-PA activity in a conditioned medium of cultured human coronary endothelial cells by inhibiting the t-PA synthesis without changing the synthesis of plasminogen activator inhibitor type 1, which is a t-PA inhibitor. Copper sulfate, the Cu10 ligand, and zinc/iron complexes with the same Cu10 ligand, did not exhibit such biological activity. These results indicate that Cu10 has the potential to provide a useful tool for finding alternative pathways that downregulate endothelial t-PA synthesis.

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Original Article
  • Hitomi Fujishiro, Satoko Hamao, Rina Tanaka, Taiho Kambe, Seiichiro Hi ...
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 559-567
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Intestinal absorption of cadmium (Cd) is considered to be mediated mainly by the ferrous iron transporter DMT1, or the calcium transporter CaT1. The roles of zinc transporters such as ZIP8 and ZIP14 remain unclear, and the roles of these four transporters in the intestinal uptake of Cd under physiological conditions have not been compared. Here, we used a trans-well cell culture system to investigate the effects of the down-regulation of these four transporters on the uptake of Cd from the apical side of enterocytes. We used a Caco-2-kh cell line that can form tight junctions within a few days. The transfection of DMT1 siRNA significantly decreased the Cd uptake from the apical side at 5 μM, but not at 0.1 or 1 μM. The transfection of ZIP14 siRNA markedly decreased the Cd uptake at 0.1 and 1 μM, but not at 5 μM. The transfection of siRNA of CaT1 or ZIP8 did not alter the Cd uptake at any concentrations of Cd examined. These results suggest that DMT1 and ZIP14 play different roles in intestinal Cd absorption depending on the concentration of Cd.

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Original Article
  • Akemi Toyoda, Maki Sugiyama, Seiichiro Furihata, Keiji Nishizumi, Taka ...
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 569-577
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The 3T3 neutral red uptake phototoxicity test (OECD TG432) is an alternative phototoxicity test method that is relatively easy and rapid to implement, with results obtainable in a short time, and is reported to have high reproducibility compared with in vivo assay methods. However, this method has been shown to be unsuitable for testing poorly water-soluble substances, which tend to separate out when mixed with the assay buffer solution. This causes difficulties in determining the dose dependency of substances and subsequent determination of the photoirritation factor because the ratio of cell viability, expressed as the half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) in the presence or absence of light, is not calculable. In this study, we investigated the optimum conditions for the evaluation of poorly water-soluble substances. In the conventional method, the final solvent concentration was 1% and the pre-incubation time was 60 min, but in the modified method, 10% and 5 min were used, respectively. Next, the results from the conventional method were compared with those of our modified method, which was found to be viable and comparable with the conventional method. Moreover, the false positive results frequently obtained with poorly water-soluble substances in the conventional method were not evident with the modified method, thus confirming its usefulness for the evaluation of such substances. We therefore propose that the modified method can be used for the in vitro testing of poorly water-soluble substances in phototoxicity evaluations.

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Original Article
  • Vudhiporn Limprasutr, Nakkawee Saengklub, Pradtana Meedech, Anusak Kij ...
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 579-587
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The current regulatory guidelines recommend the use of QT interval to assess the risk of arrhythmogenic potential of new chemical entities. Recently, the electromechanical window (EMW), the difference in duration between electrical and mechanical systole, has been proposed as markers for drug-induced torsades de pointes (TdP); however, data of EMW in short QT model are not available. This study aimed to characterize the EMW as a marker for drug-induced ventricular arrhythmias in anesthetized rabbit model of long QT syndrome type 2 (LQT2) and short QT syndrome (SQTS) infused with reference compounds known to lengthen or shorten QT intervals. After rabbits were anesthetized with isoflurane, body surface electrocardiograms and left ventricular pressure were recorded. The LQT2 was produced by intravenous infusion with dofetilide (n = 6), quinidine (n = 6) and sotalol (n = 6) whereas the SQTS was induced by intravenous escalating concentrations of nicorandil (n = 7), pinacidil (n = 5) and cromakalim (n = 5). The EMW in anesthetized rabbits ranged from 1.3 to 53.3 msec. All three drugs known to lengthen QT intervals prolonged QT and QTcF interval while the EMW was markedly decreased to negative values. Pinacidil significantly produced QT and QTcF shortening and significantly abbreviated the EMW (p < 0.05). This study demonstrated that the EMW is associated with QT intervals (p < 0.001). It is negative in the presence of QT-prolonging drugs while it is more positive in the presence of QT-shortening drugs. The results suggest that the EMW in anesthetized rabbits can be used in drug safety evaluation in addition to the QT interval.

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Letter
  • Seigo Sanoh, Yuto Yamachika, Yuka Tamura, Yaichiro Kotake, Yasumi Yosh ...
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 589-596
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    It is important to consider susceptibility to drug-induced toxicity between animals and humans. Chimeric mice with a humanized liver are expected to predict hepatotoxicity in humans. Drug-induced phospholipidosis (DIPL), in which phospholipids accumulate, is a known entity. In this study, we examined whether chimeric mice can reveal species differences in DIPL. Changes in various phosphatidylcholine (PhC) molecules were investigated in the liver of chimeric mice after administering amiodarone, which induces phospholipidosis. Liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry revealed that levels of PhCs tended to increase in the liver after administration of amiodarone. The liver of chimeric mice consists of human hepatocytes and residual mouse hepatocytes. We used imaging mass spectrometry (IMS) to evaluate the increase of PhCs in human and mouse hepatocytes after administration of amiodarone. IMS visualizes localization of endogenous and exogenous molecules in tissues. The IMS analysis suggested that the localized levels of several PhCs tended to be higher in the human hepatocytes than those in mouse hepatocytes, and PhC levels changed in response to amiodarone. Chimeric mice with a humanized liver will be useful to evaluate species differences in DIPL between mice and humans.

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Original Article
  • Nobuhiko Miura, Hiroki Yoshioka, Atsushige Ashimori, Katsumi Ohtani, T ...
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 597-604
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The expression levels or activities of biological defense factors can fluctuate daily following biological rhythms. We have focused on the relationship between injection timing and the degree of toxicity of cadmium (Cd) to promote the concept of “chronotoxicology,” which introduces chronobiology to the field of toxicology. Our previous studies have clearly indicated that Cd may be subject to chronotoxicity. In this report, to confirm the character of the Cd-induced chronotoxicity, we performed multidirectional examinations. Male C57BL/6J mice that received a single intraperitoneal injection of CdCl2 at ZT6 showed drastic hepatic injury estimated by histopathological analyses, i.e., nuclear condensations, fatty degenerations, and hemorrhages, but showed no injury when injected at ZT18. This difference was supported by several biochemical analyses that were indicators of hepatic injury (levels of alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, and malondialdehyde). The chronotoxicity of Cd was also observed in multiple strains (ICR and Balb/c), in a different injection route (subcutaneous), and in multiple injections (5 injections). Based on these results, we propose that chronotoxicology may provide important information not only for toxicology but also for occupational health, i.e., the importance of injection timing for toxicity evaluation tests, the reproducibility of animal experiments, and the improvement in the quality of risk assessments for night shift workers who may be exposed to toxic substances at various times of the day.

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Original Article
  • Junpei Mori, Seigo Sanoh, Keiko Kashiwagi, Hideki Hanada, Mitsuki Shig ...
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 605-613
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    A large number of chemicals are routinely detected in aquatic environments, and these chemicals may adversely affect aquatic organisms. Accurate risk assessment requires understanding drug-metabolizing systems in aquatic organisms because metabolism of these chemicals is a critical determinant of chemical bioaccumulation and related toxicity. In this study, we evaluated mRNA expression levels of nuclear receptors and drug-metabolizing enzymes as well as cytochrome P450 (CYP) activities in pro-metamorphic tadpoles, froglets, and adult frogs to determine how drug-metabolizing systems are altered at different life stages. We found that drug-metabolizing systems in tadpoles were entirely immature, and therefore, tadpoles appeared to be more susceptible to chemicals compared with metamorphosed frogs. On the other hand, cyp1a mRNA expression and CYP1A-like activity were higher in tadpoles. We found that thyroid hormone (TH), which increases during metamorphosis, induced CYP1A-like activity. Because endogenous TH concentration is significantly increased during metamorphosis, endogenous TH would induce CYP1A-like activity in tadpoles.

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Original Article
  • Satoshi Tsuji, Masayuki Sugiura, Shunsuke Tsutsumi, Hisaharu Yamada
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 615-627
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    Urinary biomarkers have been used widely in preclinical toxicity studies to detect dysfunctions and injuries of the kidney caused by drugs under development. While they have been well studied for evaluating nephrotoxicity, knowledge of sex differences in excretion levels of urinary biomarkers remains inadequate. We conducted experiments focused on effects of endogenous sex hormones on urinary biomarkers using intact and castrated male and female rats. Comparisons of the urinary biomarker excretion levels between intact male and female rats at 5, 7, 9 and 12 weeks of age revealed higher excretion levels of leucine aminopeptidase (LAP), γ-glutamyl transpeptidase (γGTP), total protein, liver-type fatty acid-binding protein (L-FABP), cystatin C (Cys-C) and β2-microglobulin (β2-MG), and lower excretion level of kidney injury molecule 1 (Kim-1), in male rats as compared to female rats. Orchidectomized male rats showed lower urinary excretion levels of alkaline phosphatase (ALP), LAP, γGTP, N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase (NAG), glucose, total protein, L-FABP, Cys-C, β2-MG and neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL), and higher urinary excretion levels of clusterin (CLU) and Kim-1, than sham-operated male rats. On the other hand, no significant differences in the urinary biomarker excretion levels excluding ALP were observed between ovariectomized and sham-operated female rats. In the present study, we demonstrated the existence of sex differences in excretion levels of urinary biomarkers that are universally used in preclinical toxicity studies, and also that these differences, especially in relation to the urinary excretions of ALP, LAP, γGTP, total protein, L-FABP, Cys-C, and β2-MG, may closely relate to the endogenous testosterone.

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Original Article
  • Hiroshi Uchino, Junko Fujishima, Kaori Fukuoka, Teppei Iwakiri, Akira ...
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 629-640
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The objective of this study was to investigate the availability of novel urinary biomarkers (BMs) such as total protein, albumin, β2-microglobulin, clusterin, cystatin C, neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) for the detection of acute nephrotoxicity in cynomolgus monkeys. Animals (total 9 males/3 groups) were administered gentamicin (GM) subcutaneously at 40 mg/kg for 7 days, cisplatin (CDDP) intravenously at 3 mg/kg once and puromycin aminonucleoside (PAN) intravenously at 20 mg/kg for 7 days. Two-hr urine on Days 0, 3, and 6, and 16-hr urine and blood on Days 1, 4, and 7 were collected. Novel urinary BMs and conventional clinical pathology parameters were evaluated in parallel to histopathological and electron microscopic examinations on the kidneys at termination. Urinary BMs and enzymes increased earlier than serum creatinine and blood urea nitrogen, particularly in 2-hr urine after dosing on Day 0, urinary albumin was increased in all groups and urinary NGAL with the highest magnitude of change rate among urinary BMs was observed in the GM and CDDP groups. Degeneration/necrosis and hyaline droplet of renal tubule, cellular cast and dilatation of renal tubule, and hypertrophy of podocytes were observed in the GEN, CDDP, and PAN groups, respectively. These results showed that the increases of urinary BMs reflected the agent-specific renal damages and these urinary BMs could be useful for the detection of segment-specific nephrotoxicity. Urinary albumin and NGAL are the most useful BMs to estimate glomerular and distal tubular damages, respectively, as well as proximal tubular damage in cynomolgus monkeys.

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Original Article
  • Takafumi Tomida, Masakazu Ishimura, Masahiro Iwaki
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 641-650
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    The utility of HepaRG cells as an in vitro cell-based assay system for predicting drug-induced phospholipidosis (PLD) was investigated. In experiment 1, 10 PLD-positive compounds and 11 PLD-negative compounds were selected. HepaRG cells were treated with each compound for 48 hr. In experiment 2, loratadine and desloratadine, a major metabolite of loratadine, were used to assess metabolic activation for PLD. HepaRG cells were treated with loratadine and desloratadine in the presence or absence of 500 μM 1-aminobenzotriazole (ABT), a broad CYP inhibitor, for 48 hr. After treatment with compounds in experiments 1 and 2, the relative fluorescence intensity (RFI) was measured using LYSO-ID Red dye to assess the PLD induction. In experiment 1, our cell-based assay system using HepaRG cells exhibited 100% sensitivity and 100% specificity for predicting drug-induced PLD. In experiment 2, loratadine increased the RFI in the PLD assay. However, the increase in the RFI was not observed in co-treatment with loratadine and ABT. In addition, desloratadine increased the RFI in the presence and absence of ABT. These results suggested that metabolic activation of loratadine may contribute to PLD in HepaRG cells. We newly demonstrated that HepaRG cells have a high ability for predicting drug-induced PLD. In addition, we newly showed that HepaRG cells may predict drug-induced PLD mediated by metabolic activation of loratadine. Thus, a cell-based assay system using HepaRG cells is a useful model for predicting drug-induced PLD.

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Original Article
  • Van Anh Thi Hoang, Hien Thu Thi Do, Tetsuro Agusa, Chihaya Koriyama, S ...
    Volume 42 (2017) Issue 5 Pages 651-662
    Released: September 13, 2017
    JOURNALS FREE ACCESS

    People are exposed to methylmercury (MeHg) mainly through fish consumption, which is increasing in Vietnam. However, little information is available on estimating the health risk of MeHg exposure through fish consumption in Vietnam. The present study examined the association between mercury (Hg) levels in hair and selenium (Se) levels in toenails of 196 Vietnamese people and their fish consumption, using a dietary questionnaire to obtain information pertinent for assessing health risk owing to MeHg exposure. The geometric mean of Hg levels in the hair of males and females was 617 ng/g and 575 ng/g, respectively. We found that Hg levels in the hair of 98% of the Vietnamese study subjects were lower than the provisional tolerable weekly intake for MeHg (1.6 µg Hg/kg body weight; which is equivalent to a hair Hg concentration of approximately 2,300 ng/g, with an uncertainty factor of 6.4). There were significant differences in the age-adjusted geometric mean of Hg levels found in hair from females related to their frequency of freshwater fish consumption. The levels of Hg in hair and Se in toenails increased with an increased frequency of marine fish consumption, and both showed a significant positive correlation in subjects who consumed marine fish ≥ once/week. This is the first cross-sectional study to investigate the association between hair Hg levels and fish consumption in Vietnam. These findings provide valuable information for future assessments of the health risk of MeHg exposure through fish consumption in Vietnam.

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