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Food Chem Toxicol. 2001 Dec;39(12):1243-51.

Effects elicited by toxaphene in the cynomolgus monkey (Macaca fascicularis): a pilot study.

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Toxicology Research Division, Health Canada, Postal locator 2202D1, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0L2, Canada.


Toxaphene, which was added to glycerol/corn oil, was administered at a level of 1 mg/kg body weight/day in gelatin capsules to four healthy young adult cynomolgus (Macaca fascicularis) monkeys for 52 weeks. Four control monkeys ingested capsules containing only glycerol/corn oil. Each group had two males and two females. On a daily basis, each monkey's feed and water consumption was determined, its health was monitored and the females were swabbed to evaluate menstrual status. On a weekly basis, each monkey's body weight was determined and a detailed clinical evaluation was performed. At 4-week intervals, blood samples were taken for serum biochemistry, haematology and toxaphene analysis. Also, a local anaesthetic was administered to the nuchal fat pad area of each monkey, and adipose samples were obtained for toxaphene analysis. 1 day prior to the biopsies, a 24-h urine and faecal collection was obtained for toxaphene analysis. After 34 weeks of treatment, the immune system of the monkeys was evaluated. After 52 weeks of dosing, all treated and two control animals were necropsied. Liver samples were obtained and microsomal fractions were prepared immediately. A portion of liver and kidney was taken for toxaphene analysis. All of the major internal organs were weighed and bone marrow evaluations were conducted. Organ and tissue samples were fixed in 10% formalin and processed for light microscopy. There was no effect of treatment on body weight gain, feed consumption, water consumption or haematological parameters. Two major clinical findings were inflammation and/or enlargement of the tarsal gland and impacted diverticulae in the upper and lower eye lids. At necropsy, the relative spleen and thymus weights were greater for the treated monkeys than the controls. Toxaphene administration produced an increase in metabolism of aminopyrene, methoxyresorufin and ethoxyresorufin, three substrates that are altered specifically by cytochrome P450-based hepatic monooxygenase enzymes. Histopathological examination of tissues was unremarkable by light microscopy. Tissue analysis for toxaphene and immunology findings have been published elsewhere.

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