Skip Navigation
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

The .gov means it’s official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you’re on a federal government site.


The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

Your Environment. Your Health.

Publication Detail

Title: Atropselective Partitioning of Polychlorinated Biphenyls in a HepG2 Cell Culture System: Experimental and Modeling Results.

Authors: Zhang, Chun-Yun; Flor, Susanne; Ludewig, Gabriele; Lehmler, Hans-Joachim

Published In Environ Sci Technol, (2020 11 03)

Abstract: Cell culture models are used to study the toxicity of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs); however, it is typically unknown how much PCB enters the cells and, for chiral PCBs, if the partitioning is atropselective. We investigated the partitioning of racemic PCB 91, PCB 95, PCB 132, and PCB 136 in HepG2 cells following a 72 h incubation. PCBs were present in the cell culture medium (60.7-88.8%), cells (8.0-14.6%), and dishes (2.3-7.8%) and displayed atropisomeric enrichment in the cells (enantiomeric fraction [EF] = 0.55-0.77) and dishes (EF = 0.53-0.68). Polyparameter linear free energy relationships coupled with a composition-based model provided a good estimate of the PCB levels in the cells and cell culture medium. The free concentration was subsequently used to extrapolate from the nominal cell culture concentration to PCB tissue levels and vice versa. This approach can be used for in vitro-in vivo extrapolations for all 209 PCB congeners. However, this model (and modified models based on descriptors incorporating atropselective interactions, i.e., relative retention times on chiral columns) did not predict the atropselective partitioning in the cell culture system. Improved chemical descriptors that account for the atropselective binding of PCBs to biological macromolecules are, therefore, needed to predict the atropselective partitioning of PCBs in biological systems.

PubMed ID: 33059451 Exiting the NIEHS site

MeSH Terms: Cell Culture Techniques; Polychlorinated Biphenyls*; Stereoisomerism

to Top