|Reference : Mercury immune toxicity in harbour seals: Links to in vitro toxicity|
|Scientific journals : Article|
|Life sciences : Aquatic sciences & oceanology|
Life sciences : Biochemistry, biophysics & molecular biology
Life sciences : Environmental sciences & ecology
|Mercury immune toxicity in harbour seals: Links to in vitro toxicity|
|Das, Krishna [Université de Liège - ULg > Département des sciences et gestion de l'environnement > Océanologie >]|
|Siebert, Ursula [University of Kiel > Research and Technology Center Westcoast > > >]|
|Gillet, Audrey [Université de Liège - ULg - ULG > Sciences et Gestion de l'Environnement > Océanologie > 2006 >]|
|Dupont, Aurélie [Université de Liège - ULg > Département des sciences et gestion de l'environnement > Océanologie >]|
|Di-Poï, Carole [Université de Liège - ULg - ULG > Sciences et Gestion de l'Environnement > Océanologie > 2004 >]|
|Fonfara, Sonja [GKSS Research Centre > Institute for Coastal Research > > >]|
|Mazzucchelli, Gabriel [Université de Liège - ULg > > Centre interfac. d'analyse des résidus en traces (CART) >]|
|De Pauw, Edwin [Université de Liège - ULg > Département de chimie (sciences) > Chimie physique, spectrométrie de masse >]|
|Gillet, Marie-Claire [Université de Liège - ULg > Département des sciences biomédicales et précliniques > Histologie - Cytologie - Département des sciences biomédicales et précliniques >]|
|Environmental Health : A Global Access Science Source|
|Yes (verified by ORBi)|
|[en] mercury ; marine mammals ; immunotoxicity ; harbour seal ; Phoca vitulina ; blood ; cytokines ; proteomics ; PBMCs|
Mercury is known to bioaccumulate and to magnify in marine mammals, which is a cause of great concern in terms of their general health. In particular, the immune system is known to be susceptible to long-term mercury exposure. The aims of the present study were (1) to determine the mercury level in the blood of free-ranging harbour seals from the North Sea and (2) to examine the link between methylmercury in vitro exposure and immune functions using seal and human mitogen-stimulated peripheral blood mononuclear cells (T-lymphocytes).
Total mercury was analysed in the blood of 22 harbour seals. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells were isolated from seals (n = 11) and from humans (n = 9). Stimulated lymphocytes of both species were exposed to functional tests (proliferation, metabolic activity, radioactive precursor incorporation) under increasing doses of methylmercury (0.1 to 10 µM). The expression of cytokines (IL-2; IL-4 and TGF-beta was investigated in seal lymphocytes by RT-PCR and by real time quantitative PCR (n = 5) at methylmercury concentrations of 0.2 and 1 µM. Finally, proteomics analysis was attempted on human lymphocytes (cytoplasmic fraction) in order to identify biochemical pathways of toxicity at concentration of 1 µM (n = 3).
The results showed that the number of seal lymphocytes, viability, metabolic activity, DNA and RNA synthesis were reduced in vitro, suggesting deleterious effects of methylmercury concentrations naturally encountered in free-ranging seals. Similar results were found for human lymphocytes. Functional tests showed that a 1 µM concentration was the critical concentration above which lymphocyte activity, proliferation and survival were compromised. The expression of IL-2 and TGF-beta mRNA was weaker in exposed seal lymphocytes compared to control cells (0.2 and 1 µM). Proteomics showed some variation in the protein expression profile (e.g. vimentin).
|Centre Interfacultaire de Recherches en Océanologie - MARE|
|Fonds de la Recherche Scientifique (Communauté française de Belgique) - F.R.S.-FNRS ; Marie-Curie Reintegration grant|
|Researchers ; Professionals ; Students|
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