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Am J Pathol. Jun 1986; 123(3): 520–531.
PMCID: PMC1888269

Lipid peroxidation and cellular damage in extrahepatic tissues of bromobenzene-intoxicated mice.


The mechanisms of bromobenzene toxicity in extrahepatic tissues of mice were studied. Kidney, lung, heart and brain were examined. As observed in this as well as in a previous report for the liver, bromobenzene intoxication caused a progressive decrease in the glutathione content of all the tissues examined. Cellular damage (as assessed by both biochemical determinations and histologic observations) appeared after 6 hours in the case of the kidney and the heart and after 15 hours in the case of the lung. Lipid peroxidation (as assessed by the tissue content of malonic dialdehyde, a parameter correlating with both the diene conjugation absorption and the amount of carbonyl functions in cellular phospholipids) was found to occur at the same times at which cellular damage was observed or even before. As in the case of bromobenzene-induced liver injury, when the individual values for cell damage obtained at 15-20 hours were plotted against the corresponding glutathione contents, a severe cellular damage was generally observed when the glutathione levels reached a threshold value (3.0-0.5 nmol/mg protein). Such a glutathione threshold was also observed for the onset of lipid peroxidation. Glutathione depletion and lipid peroxidation are therefore general phenomena occurring not only in the liver but in all the tissues as a consequence of bromobenzene poisoning. The possibility that lipid peroxidation is the cause of bromobenzene-induced damage to liver and extrahepatic tissues is discussed.

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