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Toxicol In Vitro. 2001 Dec;15(6):649-54.

Role of ascorbic acid on mercuric chloride-induced genotoxicity in human blood cultures.

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1
Cytogenetics Laboratory, Department of Zoology, University School of Sciences, Gujarat University, 380009, Ahmedabad, India.

Abstract

Efforts are made to find therapeutic agents capable of minimizing genotoxicity of various natural and man-made compounds. The genotoxicity induced by mercury compounds remains controversial. Therefore we have investigated the genotoxic effect of mercuric chloride (MC; HgCl(2)) at three concentrations (1.052, 5.262 and 10.524 microM) and role of L-ascorbic acid (vitamin C) at a concentration of 9.734 microM on MC-treated short-term human leucocyte cultures. We assessed the proliferative rate index (PRI), sister chromatid exchange (SCE) and chromosomal aberrations (CAS) in control and MC-treated cultures with and without vitamin C supplementation. The results showed that MC has no effect on cell-cycle kinetics, but the frequency of SCE/cell was significantly higher in a dose-dependent manner than control values. HgCl(2) also significantly induced C-anaphases (abnormal mitosis) in blood cultures. These effects were prevented by the addition of vitamin C to MC-treated cultures. The data indicate the mutagenic activity of MC and the protective role of vitamin C on mercury-induced genotoxicity in human blood cultures is probably due to its strong antioxidant and nucleophilic nature.

PMID:
11698165
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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