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Publication Detail

Title: Methylmercury effects on cell cycle kinetics.

Authors: Vogel, D G; Rabinovitch, P S; Mottet, N K

Published In Cell Tissue Kinet, (1986 Mar)

Abstract: Methylmercury (MeHg) effects on cell cycle kinetics were investigated to help identify its mechanisms of action. Flow cytometric analysis of normal human fibroblasts grown in vitro in the presence of BrdU allowed quantitation of the proportion of cells in G1, S, G2 and the next G1 phase. This technique provides a rapid and easily performed method of characterizing phase lengths and transition rates for the complete cell cycle. After first exposure to MeHg the cell cycle time was lengthened due to a prolonged G1. At 3 microM MeHg the G1 phase length was 25% longer than the control. The G1/S transition rate was also decreased in a dose-related manner. Confluent cells exposed to MeHg and replated with MeHg respond in the same way as cells which have not been exposed to MeHg before replating. Cells exposed for long times to MeHg lost a detectable G1 effect, and instead showed an increase in the G2 percentage, which was directly related to MeHg concentration and length of exposure. After 8 days at 5 microM MeHg, 45% of the population was in G2. The G2 accumulation was reversible up to 3 days, but at 6 days the cells remained in G2 when the MeHg was removed. Cell counts and viability indicated that there was not a selective loss of cells from the MeHg. MeHg has multiple effects on the cell cycle which include a lengthened G1 and decreased transition probability after short term exposure of cycling cells, and a G2 accumulation after a longer term exposure. There were no detectable S phase effects. It appears that mitosis (the G2 accumulation) and probably synthesis of some macromolecules in G1 (the lengthened G1 and lowered transition probability) are particularly susceptible to MeHg.

PubMed ID: 3698080 Exiting the NIEHS site

MeSH Terms: Cell Cycle/drug effects*; Cell Line; Fibroblasts/cytology; Flow Cytometry/methods; Humans; Infant, Newborn; Interphase/drug effects; Kinetics; Male; Methylmercury Compounds/pharmacology*; Probability; Skin

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