Send to

Choose Destination
Toxicol Lett. 2004 Dec 30;154(3):191-200.

Cadmium at a non-toxic dose alters gene expression in mouse testes.

Author information

Gamete Biology Section, Laboratory of Reproductive and Developmental Toxicology, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709, USA.


The testes are important targets of cadmium (Cd)-induced toxicity and carcinogenicity in rodents. Exposure to Cd at environmentally relevant low levels is a significant human health concern, but the effects of Cd on the rodent testes at doses that do not cause overt lesions are poorly defined. We used cDNA microarray and quantitative real-time RT-PCR assays to determine gene expression profiles in the testes of CD-1 mice 12-72 h after a single s.c. injection of 5 micromol/kg CdCl2. This dose of Cd did not produce overt histopathological changes, but clearly altered the expression of some genes that are likely to be important in toxicity responses. The most significant changes in gene expression occurred 24 h after treatment, corresponding to when the highest level of Cd was detected in the testes. Increased expression of the C-myc and Egr1 genes strongly suggests acute stress responses. Repressed expression of cell cycle-regulated cyclin B1 and CDC2 proteins indicates a potential for causing G2/M arrest and disturbance of meiosis. Decreased expression of pro-apoptotic genes, particularly Casp3, and DNA repair genes possibly contributes to Cd-induced carcinogenesis. These results indicate that changes in gene expression occur well before overt effects of Cd-induced testicular toxicity and carcinogenicity are apparent.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center