Modification of radiation-induced DNA double strand break repair pathways by chemicals extracted fromPodophyllum hexandrum: An in vitro study in human blood leukocytes

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Radiation exposure is a serious threat to biomolecules, particularly DNA, proteins and lipids. Various exogenous substances have been reported to protect these biomolecules. In this study we explored the effect of pre-treatment with G-002M, a mixture of three active derivatives isolated from the rhizomes of Podophyllum hexandrum, on DNA damage response in irradiated human blood leukocytes. Blood was collected from healthy male volunteers, preincubated with G-002M and then irradiated with various doses of radiation. Samples were analyzed using flow cytometry to quantify DNA double strand break (DSB) biomarkers including γ-H2AX, P53BP1 and levels of ligase IV. Blood samples were irradiated in vitro and processed to determine time and dose-dependent kinetics. Semiquantitative RT-PCR was performed at various time points to measure gene expression of DNA-PKcs, Ku80, ATM, and 53BP1; each of these genes is involved in DNA repair signaling. Pre-treatment of blood with G-002M resulted in reduction of γ-H2AX and P53BP1 biomarkers levels and elevated ligase IV levels relative to non-G-002M-treated irradiated cells. These results confirm suppression in radiation-induced DNA DSBs. Samples pre-treated with G-002M and then irradiated also showed significant up-regulation of DNA-PKcs and Ku80 and downregulation of ATM and 53BP1 gene expressions, suggesting that G-002M plays a protective role against DNA damage. The protective effect of G-002M may be due to its ability to scavange radiation-induced free radicals or assist in DNA repair. Further studies are needed to decipher the role of G-002M on signaling molecules involved in radiation-induced DNA damage repair pathways. Environ. Mol. Mutagen. 55:436–448, 2014. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

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