Transfer of PCBs via lactation simultaneously induces the expression of P450 isoenzymes and the protooncogenes c-Ha-ras and c-raf in neonates

J. T. Borlak, A. Scott, C. J. Henderson, H. J. Jenke, C. R. Wolf

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    At the first day of lactation, maternal rats were injected with a single i.p. dose of 100 or 250 mg/kg body weight of a mixture of polychlorinated biphenyls (Aroclor 1254). This treatment caused significant increases in both material and neonatal hepatic cytochrome P-450, cytochrome b(5), and cytochrome-c-(P-450) reductase. Transfer of PCBs via lactation resulted in significant increases in hepatic enzyme activities catalysed by neonatal CYP1A1, CYP1A2, CYP2B1, CYP3A1, and CYP2E1 using a variety of substrates. In contrast, the metabolism of dimethylnitrosamine and aminopyrine was only marginally (up to 2-fold) increased in maternal animals four days post treatment. Further measurements showed significant increases in maternal and neonatal epoxide hydrolase, glutathione-S-transferase, and UDP-glucuronyl transferase activities, thus suggesting a coordinated response in maternal and neonatal oxidative and post-oxidative drug metabolism. Western blot analysis provided evidence for an induction of CYP1A1, CYP1A2, CYP2A1, CYP2B1, CYP2E1, CYP3A1, and CYP4A1 in both maternal and neonatal liver, albeit at varying intensities. However, PCBs did not modulate the expres sion of maternal and neonatal CYP2C6, and at the higher dose the expression of neonatal CYP2E1 was significantly reduced. Northern blot analysis provided further evidence for significant increases in maternal and neonatal hepatic CYP1A1, CYP1A2, CYP2B1, and CYP2E1 mRNA, but reduced amounts of CYP2C7 and CYP4A1 mRNA. Additional Northern blot hybridization experiments may suggest an increased expression of the protooncogenes c-Ha-ras and c-raf in the mother and the neonate upon treatment of maternal rats with Aroclor 1254. Lactation itself may result in an increased expression of the latter protooncogenes, but the mRNA of the protooncogenes c-erb A and c-erb B was not detected in any of the tissues examined.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)517-529
    Number of pages13
    JournalBiochemical Pharmacology
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 23 Feb 1996


    • PCBs
    • Lactation
    • Neonates
    • Toxicity
    • CYP450 induction
    • Protooncogenes

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