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Environmental toxicology

Cytometric analysis of adverse action of diphenyl ditelluride on rat thymocytes: cell shrinkage as a cytotoxic parameter.


PMID 15526268

Abstract

Despite the growing use of organotellurium compounds in the chemical and biomedical fields, there has been no great concern about their toxicity until now. To test the possibility that diphenyl ditelluride (DPDT) and tellurium chloride (TeCl2), organic and inorganic tellurium compounds, may exert adverse action on mammals, their effects on rat thymocytes were examined under in vitro conditions using a flow cytometer with fluorescent probes. Incubation of thymocytes with DPDT at 300 nM or more for 24 h significantly increased the populations of shrunken cells and of cells with hypodiploidal DNA. Z-VAD-FMK, a paninhibitor of caspases, greatly suppressed the DPDT-induced increase in the hypodiploidal cell population, suggesting the involvement of caspase activation in DPDT toxicity. Hence, it is possible that DPDT would increase the population of thymocytes undergoing apoptosis if the blood concentration in mammals reached at least 300 nM or more. TeCl2 was much less potent than DPDT in increasing the population of hypodiploidal cells.

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