Send to

Choose Destination
Environ Mol Mutagen. 2019 Jan;60(1):72-84. doi: 10.1002/em.22235. Epub 2018 Sep 27.

Chromosome Missegregation and Aneuploidy Induction in Human Peripheral Blood Lymphocytes In vitro by Low Concentrations of Chlorpyrifos, Imidacloprid and α-Cypermethrin.

Author information

Unit of Mutagenesis, Institute for Medical Research and Occupational Health, Zagreb, Croatia.
Department of Oncological Pathology, Sestre Milosrdnice University Hospital Center, Zagreb, Croatia.


Chlorpyrifos, imidacloprid, and α-cypermethrin are some of the most widely used insecticides in contemporary agriculture. However, their low-dose, nontarget genotoxic effects have not been extensively assayed. As one of the most relevant cancer biomarkers, we aimed to assess the aneuploidy due to chromosome missegregation during mitosis. To aim it we treated human lymphocytes in vitro with three concentrations of insecticides equivalents relevant for real scenario exposure assessed by regulatory agencies. We focused on chlorpyrifos as conventional and imidacloprid and α-cypermethrin as sustainable use insecticides. Cytokinesis-blocked micronucleus assay was performed coupled with fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with directly labeled pancentromeric probes for chromosomes 9, 18, X and Y. None of the insecticides induced significant secondary DNA damage in terms of micronuclei (MN), nuclear buds (NB), or nucleoplasmic bridges (NPB). However, significant disbalances in chromosomes 9, 18, X and Y, and in insecticide-treated cells has been observed. According to recent studies, these disbalances in chromosome numbers may be atributted to defect sister chromatid cohesion which contribute to the increase of chromosome missegregation but not to micronuclei incidence. We conclude that tested insecticidal active substances exert chromosome missegregation effects at low concentrations, possibly by mechanism of sister chromatid cohesion. These findings may contribute to future risk assesments and understanding of insecticide mode of action on human genome. Environ. Mol. Mutagen. 60:72-84, 2019.


Chlorpyrifos; aneuploidy; fluorescence in situ hybridization; genotoxicity; imidacloprid; α-cypermethrin

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center