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Free Radic Res. 2015;49(8):1015-25. doi: 10.3109/10715762.2015.1027199. Epub 2015 Apr 24.

Prenatal exposure to the contaminant perfluorooctane sulfonate elevates lipid peroxidation during mouse fetal development but not in the pregnant dam.

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School of Biological Sciences, The University of Hong Kong , Hong Kong SAR.


Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), a member of the perfluorinated chemical family, has been convincingly demonstrated to affect lipid metabolism in animals and humans and readily crosses the placenta to exert its effects on the developing fetuses. While its exact mechanism is still not clear, PFOS exposure has long been suggested to exert its toxicity via oxidative stress and/or altered gene expression. Levels of PFOS and malondialdehyde in various organs and cell cultures have been widely determined as general indicators of non-specific lipid peroxidation after PFOS exposure. In this study, the oxidation of precise polyunsaturated fatty acids and their metabolites, derived from enzymatic and non-enzymatic pathways was determined following PFOS exposure in both adult and maternal/fetal mice. CD-1 mice were exposed to 3 mg/kg body weight/day of PFOS in corn oil by oral gavage until late gestation (GD17). We demonstrated that lipid peroxidation was particularly and exclusively affected in fetuses exposed to PFOS, but this was not the case in the maternal mice, where limited effects were observed in the enzymatic oxidation pathway. In this study, we demonstrated that PFOS-induced lipid peroxidation might have a greater impact in free radical generation in fetuses than in dams and could be responsible for affecting fetal development. In addition, antioxidant enzymes, such as superoxide dismutase and catalase, appeared to maintain oxidative stress homeostasis partially in adult mice exposed to PFOS. Taken together, our results might elucidate the mechanism of how PFOS induces oxidative stress in vivo.


PFOS; PUFA; isofuranoids; isoprostanoids; oxidative stress

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