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Food Chem Toxicol. 1999 Jul;37(7):757-63.

Sister-chromatid exchanges induced by disulfiram in bone marrow and spermatogonial cells of mice treated in vivo.

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Laboratorio de Genética, Escuela Nacional de Ciencias Biológicas, I.P.N., México, D.F.


Disulfiram is a widely used drug to treat alcoholism due to its capacity to inhibit the metabolism of acetaldehyde; however, its genotoxic potential is not well known. Thus, the aim of this investigation was to determine whether the chemical may induce sister-chromatid exchanges (SCEs) in an in vivo study using mouse bone marrow and spermatogonial cells. We used doses of 200, 400 and 800 mg/kg body weight and compared the obtained data with the values determined in a negative control group as well as with a positive control group (cyclophosphamide, 50 mg/kg). The results in both systems indicated a weak genotoxic response by the chemical. In the case of bone marrow, a significant SCE level was achieved only with the high tested dose, but in spermatogonial cells the three doses tested showed a significant difference with respect to the negative control. No significant alterations in the mitotic index or in the cell proliferation kinetics were observed in somatic cells. Concerning the effect of cyclophosphamide, an increase in the level of SCEs was observed in both types of cells, reaching more than three times the values obtained in their respective control groups.

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