Toxicology and industrial health

Characterization of arsenic-induced cytotoxicity in liver with stress in erythrocytes and its reversibility with Pleurotus florida lectin.

PMID 23282998


Arsenic is one of the most hazardous substances in the environment known to cause toxicity in multiple organs. Cell adhesion, morphological alterations, cell proliferation, terminal deoxyuridine triphosphate nick-end labeling (TUNEL) and caspase-3/CPP32 fluorometric protease assay were important biomarkers to assess apoptosis in cells. This study aimed to evaluate arsenic-induced apoptosis in the hepatocytes of rat and its protective efficacy with coadministration of ascorbic acid (AA) and Pleurotus florida lectin (PFL) individually. Results of the present study also showed that arsenic caused cytotoxicity by elevating morphological alterations, TUNEL-positive nuclei, caspase-3 activity and DNA damage and reducing cell adhesion and cell proliferation in a time-dependent manner. The apoptosis in hepatocytes was reverted to normal value after coadministration of mushroom lectin in arsenic-exposed rat. The study provided significant evidence that PFL has antiapoptotic property against arsenic-induced toxicity. The beneficial effect of PFL was proportional to its duration of exposure. Retard activities of superoxide dismutase and catalase, enhanced lipid peroxidation as well as protein carbonyl in erythrocytes caused by arsenic could also be maintained toward normalcy by supplementation of AA and PFL. These antioxidative effects were exhibited in a time-dependant manner. In rat, treatment with AA and PFL prevented alteration of plasma enzyme activities caused by arsenic. The results concluded that treatment with PFL has significant role in protecting animals from arsenic-induced erythrocytic damage. This finding might be of therapeutic benefit in people suffering from chronic exposure to arsenic from natural sources, a global problem especially relevant to millions of people on the Indian subcontinent.