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Publication Detail

Title: Effects of arsenite on p53, p21 and cyclin D expression in normal human fibroblasts -- a possible mechanism for arsenite's comutagenicity.

Authors: Vogt, B L; Rossman, T G

Published In Mutat Res, (2001 Jul 01)

Abstract: Arsenite, the most likely environmental carcinogenic form of arsenic, is not significantly mutagenic at non-toxic concentrations, but is able to enhance the mutagenicity of other agents. Evidence suggests that this comutagenic effect of arsenite is due to inhibition of DNA repair, but no specific repair enzyme has been found to be sensitive to low (<1 microM) concentrations of arsenite. To determine whether arsenite affects signaling which might alter DNA repair, this study assesses the effect of arsenite on p53-related signal transduction pathways after ionizing radiation. Long-term (14 day) low dose (0.1 microM) arsenite caused a modest increase in p53 expression in WI38 normal human fibroblasts, while only toxic (50 microM) concentrations increased p53 levels after short-term (18 h) exposure. When cells were irradiated (6 Gy), p53 and p21 protein concentrations were increased after 4h, as expected. Both long-term, low dose and short-term, high dose exposure to arsenite greatly suppressed the radiation-induced increase in p21 abundance. In addition, long-term, low dose (but not short-term, high dose) exposure to arsenite resulted in increased expression of cyclin D1. These results show that in cells treated with arsenite, p53-dependent increase in p21 expression, normally a block to cell cycle progression after DNA damage, is deficient. At the same time, low (non-toxic) exposure to arsenite enhances positive growth signaling. We suggest that the absence of normal p53 functioning, along with increased positive growth signaling in the presence of DNA damage may result in defective DNA repair and account for the comutagenic effects of arsenite.

PubMed ID: 11406180 Exiting the NIEHS site

MeSH Terms: Arsenites/toxicity*; Cell Line; Cell Survival/drug effects; Cyclin D; Cyclin-Dependent Kinase Inhibitor p21; Cyclins/metabolism; Dose-Response Relationship, Drug; Fibroblasts/drug effects*; Fibroblasts/metabolism; Fibroblasts/radiation effects; Humans; Immunoblotting; Lethal Dose 50; Mutagenicity Tests; Mutagens/toxicity; Proteins/metabolism*; Tumor Suppressor Protein p53/metabolism; Up-Regulation/drug effects; Up-Regulation/radiation effects

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