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Ecotoxicology and environmental safety

In vitro and in vivo estrogenic activity of BPA, BPF and BPS in zebrafish-specific assays.


PMID 28407500

Abstract

Bisphenol A (BPA) is a widely used chemical that has been extensively studied as an endocrine-disrupting chemical (EDC). Other bisphenols sharing close structural features with BPA, are increasingly being used as alternatives, increasing the need to assess associated hazards to the endocrine system. In the present study, the estrogenic activity of BPA, bisphenol S (BPS) and bisphenol F (BPF) was assessed by using a combination of zebrafish-specific mechanism-based in vitro and in vivo assays. The three bisphenols were found to efficiently transactivate all zebrafish estrogen receptor (zfER) subtypes in zebrafish hepatic reporter cell lines (ZELH-zfERs). BPA was selective for zfERα while BPS and BPF were slightly more potent on zfERβ subtypes. We further documented the estrogenic effect in vivo by quantifying the expression of brain aromatase using a transgenic cyp19a1b-GFP zebrafish embryo assay. All three bisphenols induced GFP in a concentration-dependent manner. BPS only partially induced brain aromatase at the highest tested concentrations (>30µM) while BPA and BPF strongly induced GFP, in an ER-dependent manner, at 1-10µM. Furthermore, we show that BPF strongly induced vitellogenin synthesis in adult male zebrafish. Overall, this study demonstrates the estrogenic activity of BPA, BPF and BPS in different cell- and tissue-contexts and at different stages of development. Differences between in vitro and in vivo responses are discussed in light of selective ER activation and the fate of the compounds in the models. This study confirms the relevance of combining cellular and whole-organism bioassays in a unique model species for the hazard assessment of candidate EDCs.

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