Effects of furazolidone, PCB77, PCB126, Aroclor 1248, paraquat and p,p'-DDE on transketolase activity in embryonal chicken brain.

PMID 11960673


The effect of in ovo exposure to PCBs, DDE and paraquat on transketolase activity was measured in 19-day-old chicken embryos. Furazolidone was used as a positive control for decreased activity of the enzyme. The potency of contaminants to interact with transketolase was also tested in an in vitro system, using control brain 7000xg supernatants containing the enzyme. No effects were found on transketolase activity after in ovo or in vitro exposure to PCB126, Aroclor, DDE or paraquat. PCB77 decreased transketolase activity in vitro, but only at concentrations that, extrapolated to in ovo exposure, would be lethal to the embryo. Furazolidone decreased transketolase activity both in ovo and in vitro. For this contaminant, thiamine residues were analysed in the yolk sacs, but no differences were found between exposed and non-exposed eggs. Transketolase is dependent on thiamine pyrophosphate as a cofactor, and therefore, the decreased enzyme activity could be the result of an interaction between furazolidone and thiamine metabolism. Since thiamine residues were not affected by furazolidone and transketolase inhibition in vitro was similar to the inhibition after in ovo exposure, it was concluded that furazolidone interacted with transketolase on the enzymatic level rather than by a depletion of thiamine.