Steroid hormone related effects of marine persistent organic pollutants in human H295R adrenocortical carcinoma cells

M.W. van den Dungen*, J.C.W. Rijk, E. Kampman, W.T. Steegenga, A.J. Murk

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) such as 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD), polychlorobiphenyl (PCB) 126 and 153, perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS), hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD), 2,2',4,4'-tetrabromodiphenyl ether (BDE-47), tributyltin (TBT), and methylmercury (MeHg) can be accumulated in seafood and then form a main source for human exposure. Some POPs have been associated with changes in steroid hormone levels in both humans and animals. This study describes the in vitro effects of these POPs and mixtures thereof in H295R adrenocortical carcinoma cells. Relative responses for 13 steroid hormones and 7 genes involved in the steroidogenic pathway, and CYP1A1, were analyzed. PFOS induced the most pronounced effects on steroid hormone levels by significantly affecting 9 out of 13 hormone levels measured, with the largest increases found for 17ß-estradiol, corticosterone, and cortisol. Furthermore, TCDD, both PCBs, and TBT significantly altered steroidogenesis. Increased steroid hormone levels were accompanied by related increased gene expression levels. The differently expressed genes were MC2R, CYP11B1, CYP11B2, and CYP19A1 and changes in gene expression levels were more sensitive than changes in hormone levels. The POP mixtures tested showed mostly additive effects, especially for DHEA and 17ß-estradiol levels. This study shows that some seafood POPs are capable of altering steroidogenesis in H295R cells at concentrations that mixtures might reach in human blood, suggesting that adverse health effects cannot be excluded.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)769-778
JournalToxicology in Vitro
Volume29
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Keywords

  • Adrenal cortex cell line
  • Endocrine disruption
  • Gene expression
  • H295R
  • Persistent organic pollutants (POPs)
  • Steroid hormones

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