RNA-Seq identifies key reproductive gene expression alterations in response to cadmium exposure.
ABSTRACT: Cadmium is a common toxicant that is detrimental to many tissues. Although a number of transcriptional signatures have been revealed in different tissues after cadmium treatment, the genes involved in the cadmium caused male reproductive toxicity, and the underlying molecular mechanism remains unclear. Here we observed that the mice treated with different amount of cadmium in their rodent chow for six months exhibited reduced serum testosterone. We then performed RNA-seq to comprehensively investigate the mice testicular transcriptome to further elucidate the mechanism. Our results showed that hundreds of genes expression altered significantly in response to cadmium treatment. In particular, we found several transcriptional signatures closely related to the biological processes of regulation of hormone, gamete generation, and sexual reproduction, respectively. The expression of several testosterone synthetic key enzyme genes, such as Star, Cyp11a1, and Cyp17a1, were inhibited by the cadmium exposure. For better understanding of the cadmium-mediated transcriptional regulatory mechanism of the genes, we computationally analyzed the transcription factors binding sites and the mircoRNAs targets of the differentially expressed genes. Our findings suggest that the reproductive toxicity by cadmium exposure is implicated in multiple layers of deregulation of several biological processes and transcriptional regulation in mice.
Project description:Increasing evidences have shown that cadmium could caused male infertility. However, the exhaustive mechanisms have not been elucidated in mammals. Here, the mice testes and sperm RNA were used to investigate lncRNA expression profiles by stranded-specific RNA-seq on the transcriptome levels after exposure to cadmium. More LncRNA expression have been changed than mRNA genes by cadmium. Furthermore, many novel LncRNA were inducible expression, suggesting that LncRNA might be a good candidate for indicating the reproductive toxicity of cadmium. The present study provides a preliminary database for further exploring the mechanisms of reproductive toxicity caused by cadmium in mammalians. Overall design: LncRNA profiles of mice (3-5 months) were generated by stranded-specific RNA-seq, using Illumina HiSeqTM 4000 with PE100.
Project description:Linuron is a widely used herbicide; its toxicity on the male reproductive system has been recognized. The current study was designed to explore the molecular mechanism underlying linuron-induced reproductive toxicity. Pregnant rats received daily oral gavage of linuron at the dose of 120mg/kg/d from gestation day (GD)12 to GD17. Tissues from male offspring rats were collected for pathological examination and microarray gene expression profiling. Changes in gene expression were further verified by quantitative real-time RT-PCR. Data showed that linuron-exposed offspring rats had a decreased sperm count (88% of controls) and disrupted acrosome formation. There were evident damages in seminiferous tubules and abnormal morphology in mesenchymal cells in samples from linuron-exposed animals. Microarray analysis indicated that the expressions of testosterone synthesis-associated genes, i.e., Star, P450scc, 3?-Hsd, Abp, Cox7a2, Pcna, p450c17and17?-Hsd were significantly altered by linuron exposure, along with other genes involving in cell proliferation and apoptosis, such as c-myc, S6K, Apaf1, and TSC1. These data indicate that linuron upon entering male offspring body can directly or indirectly interact with the androgen production and function; linuron-induced alteration in genes encoding testosterone synthesis is likely a major factor in linuron-induced male reproductive toxicity.
Project description:Perfluorooctanoate, a peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor alpha (PPAR?) agonist, has the potential to lower testosterone levels as a result of testicular toxicity. To elucidate the mechanism and impact of PPAR? on this reproductive toxicity, ammonium perfluorooctanoate (APFO) at doses of 0, 1.0 (low) mg/kg/day, or 5.0 (high) mg/kg/day was orally given daily to 129/sv wild-type (mPPAR?), Ppar?-null and PPAR?-humanized (hPPAR?) mice for 6 weeks. Both low- and high-dose APFO significantly reduced plasma testosterone concentrations in mPPAR? and hPPAR? mice, respectively. These decreases may, in part, be associated with decreased expression of mitochondrial cytochrome P450 side-chain cleavage enzyme, steroidogenic acute regulatory protein or peripheral benzodiazepine receptor as well as microsomal cytochrome P450(17?) involved in the steroidogenesis. Additionally, both doses increased abnormalities in sperm morphology and vacuolated cells in the seminiferous tubules of both mouse lines. In contrast, APFO caused only a marginal effect either on the testosterone synthesis system or sperm and testis morphology in Ppar?-null mice. These results suggest that APFO may disrupt testosterone biosynthesis by lowering the delivery of cholesterol into the mitochondria and decreasing the conversion of cholesterol to pregnenolone and androstandione in the testis of mPPAR? and hPPAR? mice, which may, in part, be related to APFO-induced mitochondrial damage.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Cerium oxide nanoparticles (CeO2 NPs) have potential application for use in biomedical and in various consumer products. However, it is largely unclear whether CeO2 NPs have effects on male reproductive function. METHODS:In this study, male mice were examined for toxicity, if any, following chronic oral administration of CeO2 NPs for 32 days. In each animal, epididymides were examined for sperm motility and DNA integrity. Bloods were tested for testosterone levels. Testicular tissues were collected to determine the element Ce content, the daily sperm production (DSP), marker enzymes such as ACP, G6PD, γ-GT and SDH, mRNA expression levels of steroidogenesis genes Star, P450scc, P450c17, 3β-Hsd, and 17β-Hsd, as well as steroidogenic factor-1 (SF-1) gene/protein levels. RESULTS:The results showed that CeO2 NPs (20 mg/kg and 40 mg/kg) increased the element Ce content in testis, the testis histopathological patterns and sperm DNA damage whereas decreased the testis weight, DSP and sperm motility. There were also remarkable reduction in testosterone levels and marker enzymes activities, down-regulated mRNA expression levels of several steroidogenesis genes such as Star, P450scc, P450c17, 3β-Hsd, and 17β-Hsd, as well as altered gene and protein expressions of SF-1. CONCLUSION:These results reveal the male reproductive toxicity of chronic exposure of CeO2 NPs in mice, hinting that the utilization of CeO2 NPs need to be carefully evaluated about their potential reproductive toxicity on the human health.
Project description:Zearalenone (ZEA) contamination is a very serious problem around the world as it can induce reproductive disorders in animals and affect the health of humans. Therefore, reducing the damage it causes to humans and animals is a current focus of research. In this study, we assess the removing capacity of Pediococcus pentosaceus xy46 towards ZEA and investigate the mechanism responsible for its action, thus confirming if it can alleviate ZEA toxicity to the reproductive systems of male mice. Our results show that the rate at which the strain removes ZEA is as high as 89.2% in 48 h when the concentration of ZEA is 4 ?g/mL in the liquid medium. Heat and acid treatment significantly enhanced the ability of the bacteria to remove ZEA. The animal experiments results show that the oral administration of xy46 to mice (0.2 mL daily at a concentration of 109 CFU/mL for 28 days) significantly reduces the degree of testicular pathomorphological changes and apoptosis induced by ZEA when the mice are intragastric administration with 40 mg/kg ZEA daily for 28 days. Moreover, oral administration of xy46 enhances the decrease in the testosterone level and improves the oxidative stress injury induced by ZEA. Furthermore, oral administration of xy46 reverts the expression of these genes and proteins in the testicular tissues of the mice involved in the blood-testis barrier and apoptosis (e.g., Vim, caspase 12, Cldn11, N-cad, Bax, and Bcl-2). However, xy46 cannot significantly revert in some of these evaluated parameters, especially in sperm quantity and quality when the mice were given 70 mg/kg ZEA daily for 28 days. In conclusion, our results suggest that the strain Pediococcus pentosaceus xy46 can efficiently remove ZEA from the liquid medium, the mechanism responsible for its action is absorption, and it can alleviate the toxicity of ZEA to the reproductive systems of male mice when the mice are given 40 mg/kg ZEA daily, However, it cannot completely alleviate the reproductive toxicity of higher dosage of zearalenone through its ability to adsorb ZEA.
Project description:Increasing evidence suggests that long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) are involved in a variety of physiological and pathophysiological processes. Our study was to investigate whether lncRNAs as novel expression signatures are able to modulate DNA damage and repair in cadmium(Cd) toxicity. There were aberrant expression profiles of lncRNAs in 35th Cd-induced cells as compared to untreated 16HBE cells. siRNA-mediated knockdown of ENST00000414355 inhibited the growth of DNA-damaged cells and decreased the expressions of DNA-damage related genes (ATM, ATR and ATRIP), while increased the expressions of DNA-repair related genes (DDB1, DDB2, OGG1, ERCC1, MSH2, RAD50, XRCC1 and BARD1). Cadmium increased ENST00000414355 expression in the lung of Cd-exposed rats in a dose-dependent manner. A significant positive correlation was observed between blood ENST00000414355 expression and urinary/blood Cd concentrations, and there were significant correlations of lncRNA-ENST00000414355 expression with the expressions of target genes in the lung of Cd-exposed rats and the blood of Cd exposed workers. These results indicate that some lncRNAs are aberrantly expressed in Cd-treated 16HBE cells. lncRNA-ENST00000414355 may serve as a signature for DNA damage and repair related to the epigenetic mechanisms underlying the cadmium toxicity and become a novel biomarker of cadmium toxicity.
Project description:While microcystins (MCs) have been reported to exert reproductive toxicity on fish with a sex-dependent effect, the underlying mechanism has been rarely investigated. In the present study, zebrafish were exposed to 1, 5 and 20??g/L MC-LR for 30?d. The gonad-somatic index declined in all treated males. 17?-estradiol (E2), testosterone (T), 11-keto testosterone (11-KT) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) levels increased in serum from all treated females, while T, FSH and luteinizing hormone (LH) levels changed in all treated males. Histomorphological observation showed that MC-LR exposure evidently retarded oogenesis and spermatogenesis. Transcriptional changes of 22 genes of the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonad (HPG) axis exhibited sex-specific responses, and the relationship between gene transcriptions and gametogenesis was evaluated by principle component analysis (PCA). Major contributors to PC1 (gnrh2, gnrhr3, ar, lhr, hmgra, hmgrb and cyp19a) were positively correlated with the number of post-vitellogenic oocytes, while PC1 (gnrh2, lh?, er?, fshr, cyp11a and 17?hsd) were positively correlated with the number of spermatozoa. The protein levels of 17?HSD and CYP19a were affected in both females and males. In conclusion, this study first investigated the sex-dependent effects of microcystins on fish reproduction and revealed some important molecular biomarkers related to gametogenesis in zebrafish suffered from MC-LR.
Project description:This study was conducted to investigate the possible protective role of thymoquinone (TQ) and l-cysteine on the reproductive toxicity of male rats induced by cadmium chloride (CdCl2). Forty rats were divided into four even groups. The first group served as untreated control. The second, third and fourth groups received CdCl2, CdCl2 and TQ, and CdCl2 and l-cysteine, respectively for 56 days. Cd exposure caused spermatological damage (decrease sperm count and motility and increased the rates of sperm abnormalities), decrease serum testosterone level and increased oxidative stress. Histological alterations were also observed in the form of vascular and cellular changes in CdCl2 treated rats. The vascular changes were congestion of the blood vessels with interstitial edema in the testes, epididymis, seminal vesicle and prostate. The cellular changes were in the form of degenerative changes with presence of multinucleated giant cells in the lumen of seminiferous tubules, vacuolation and sloughing of the lining epithelium of the epididymis, seminal vesiculitis and prostatitis. Co-administration of TQ and l-cysteine with CdCl2 increased glutathione (GSH), superoxide dismutase (SOD), catalase (CAT) and testosterone and reduced lipid peroxidation (LPO) activity. In conclusion, our results showed that TQ and l-cysteine can ameliorate the deleterious effects of CdCl2 probably by activating testicular endocrine and antioxidant systems.
Project description:Purpose:Lanthanum oxide (La2O3) nanoparticles (NPs) have been widely used in catalytic and photoelectric applications?, ?but the reproductive toxicity is still unclear. This study evaluated the reproductive toxicity of two different-sized La2O3 particles in the testes. Materials and Methods:Fifty Kunming mice were randomly divided into five groups. Mice were treated with La2O3 NPs by repeated intragastric administration for 90 days (control, nano-sized with 5, 10, 50 mg/?kg BW and micro-sized with 50 mg/?kg BW). Mice in the control group were treated with de-ionised water without La2O3 NPs. Sperm parameters, testicular histopathology, TEM assessment, hormone assay and nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf-2) pathway were performed and evaluated. Results:The body weight of mice treated with La2O3 NPs or not had no difference; sperm parameters and histological assessment showed that La2O3 NPs could induce reproductive toxicity in the testicle. Serum testosterone and gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) in the NH (nano-sized with 50 mg/?kg BW) group were markedly decreased relative to control group, and an increase of luteinizing hormone (LH) in NH group was detected . Additionally, transmission electron microscopy revealed that the ultrastructural abnormalities induced by La2O3 NPs were more severe than La2O3 MPs in the testes. Furthermore, La2O3 NPs treatment inhibited the translocation of nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (Nrf-2) from the cytoplasm into the nucleus as well as the expression of downstream genes NAD(P)H quinone oxidoreductase1 (NQO1), hemeoxygenase 1 (HO-1) and (?glutathione peroxidase) GSH-Px, thus abrogating Nrf-2-mediated defense mechanisms against oxidative stress. Conclusions:The results of this study demonstrated that La2O3 NPs improved the spermatogenesis defects in mice. La2O3 NPs inhibited Nrf-2/ARE signaling pathway that resulted in apoptosis in the mice testes.
Project description:Cadmium is a metalloestrogen known to activate the estrogen receptor and promote breast cancer cell growth. Previous studies have implicated cadmium in the development of more malignant tumors; however the molecular mechanisms behind this cadmium-induced malignancy remain elusive. Using clonal cell lines derived from exposing breast cancer cells to cadmium for over 6 months (MCF-7-Cd4, -Cd6, -Cd7, -Cd8 and -Cd12), this study aims to identify gene expression signatures associated with chronic cadmium exposure. Our results demonstrate that prolonged cadmium exposure does not merely result in the deregulation of genes but actually leads to a distinctive expression profile. The genes deregulated in cadmium-exposed cells are involved in multiple biological processes (i.e. cell growth, apoptosis, etc.) and molecular functions (i.e. cadmium/metal ion binding, transcription factor activity, etc.). Hierarchical clustering demonstrates that the five clonal cadmium cell lines share a common gene expression signature of breast cancer associated genes, clearly differentiating control cells from cadmium exposed cells. The results presented in this study offer insights into the cellular and molecular impacts of cadmium on breast cancer and emphasize the importance of studying chronic cadmium exposure as one possible mechanism of promoting breast cancer progression.