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Toxins 2018, 10(11), 435; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins10110435

Impact of Microcystin-LR on Liver Function Varies by Dose and Sex in Mice

1
College of Public Health, Division of Environmental Health Sciences, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA
2
Charles River Laboratories, Spencerville, OH 45887, USA
3
Department of Cancer Biology, University of Toledo, Toledo, OH 43614, USA
4
Department of Food Science & Technology, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 29 September 2018 / Revised: 22 October 2018 / Accepted: 26 October 2018 / Published: 28 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Collection Freshwater HABs and Health in a Changing World)
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Abstract

Microcystin (MC) exposure is an increasing concern because more geographical locations are covered with cyanobacterial blooms as eutrophication and bloom-favoring environmental factors become more prevalent worldwide. Acute MC exposure has been linked to gastrointestinal distress, liver toxicity, and death in extreme circumstances. The goal of this study was to provide an accurate and comprehensive description of MC-LRs impacts on liver pathology, clinical chemistry, and gap junction intercellular communication (GJIC) in CD-1 male and female mice. Mice were exposed to 0, 3000, and 5000/4000 µg/kg/day MC-LR, daily for 7 days, and were necropsied on Day 8. Blood samples for clinical chemistry analysis were processed to serum, while liver sections were fixed for histopathology or evaluated for GJIC using fluorescent cut-load dye. Results show a dose-dependent relationship with MC-LR exposure and hepatocellular hypertrophy, degradation, and necrosis. Clinical chemistry parameters alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, alkaline phosphatase, total bilirubin, and cholesterol increased significantly in MC-LR exposed mice. Clinical chemistry parameter analysis showed significantly increased susceptibility to MC-LR in females compared to males. Changes in GJIC were not noted, but localization of hepatotoxicity near the central veins and midlobular areas was seen. Future toxicity studies involving MCs should consider response differences across sexes, differing MC congeners, and combinatorial exposures involving other cyanotoxins. View Full-Text
Keywords: liver health; ingestion; acute exposure; harmful algal blooms; female and male; cyanotoxin liver health; ingestion; acute exposure; harmful algal blooms; female and male; cyanotoxin
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Mrdjen, I.; Morse, M.A.; Ruch, R.J.; Knobloch, T.J.; Choudhary, S.; Weghorst, C.M.; Lee, J. Impact of Microcystin-LR on Liver Function Varies by Dose and Sex in Mice. Toxins 2018, 10, 435.

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