Proteomic analysis of hippocampal proteins of F344 rats exposed to 1-bromopropane

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1-Bromopropane (1-BP) is a compound used as an alternative to ozone-depleting solvents and is neurotoxic both in experimental animals and human. However, the molecular mechanisms of the neurotoxic effects of 1-BP are not well known. To identify the molecular mechanisms of 1-BP-induced neurotoxicity, we analyzed quantitatively changes in protein expression in the hippocampus of rats exposed to 1-BP. Male F344 rats were exposed to 1-BP at 0, 400, or 1000 ppm for 8 h/day for 1 or 4 weeks by inhalation. Two-dimensional difference in gel electrophoresis (2D-DIGE) combined with matrix-assisted laser-desorption ionization time-of-flight (MALDI-TOF) mass spectrometry (MS) were conducted to detect and identify protein modification. Changes in selected proteins were further confirmed by western blot. 2D-DIGE identified 26 proteins with consistently altered model (increase or decrease after both 1- and 4-week 1-BP exposures) and significant changes in their levels (p<0.05; fold change≥±1.2) at least at one exposure level or more compared with the corresponding controls. Of these proteins, 19 were identified by MALDI-TOF-TOF/MS. Linear regression analysis of 1-BP exposure level identified 8 differentially expressed proteins altered in a dose-dependent manner both in 1- and 4-week exposure experiments. The identified proteins could be categorized into diverse functional classes such as nucleocytoplasmic transport, immunity and defense, energy metabolism, ubiquitination-proteasome pathway, neurotransmitter and purine metabolism. Overall, the results suggest that 1-BP-induced hippocampal damage involves oxidative stress, loss of ATP production, neurotransmitter dysfunction and inhibition of ubiquitination-proteasome system.

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