• The Effects of Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA) on Cell Viability and Gene Expression of Peroxisome Proliferator–activated Receptors (PPARs) and Estrogen Receptors (ERs) in MCF-7 Cells

      Smith, April; Department of Biological Sciences (Augusta University, 2015-05)
      Perfluorinated chemicals are compounds that are found in several consumer products. Some of these products are widely utilized every day and include plastics, pesticides, and makeup among several other goods and supplies. These chemicals were originally thought to be non-harmful, but there is a significant amount of scientific evidence that suggests otherwise. Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) is an endocrine disrupting perfluorinated chemical1. PFOA binds to ligand activated transcription factors in cells called peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) 2, 3, 4. PPARS regulate genes of many cellular activities, such as inflammation, metabolism, proliferation, and differentiation5, 6, 7, 8. Several studies have suggested crosstalk between PPARs and estrogen receptors (ERs) 9, 10, 11. One study has shown an increase in ERα proteins with PFOA treatment in mice4. MCF-7 cells were the model to study the effects of PFOA on cell viability and the gene expression of ERs and PPARs with PFOA exposure. Cell viability was tested by CellTiter-Blue® viability assays. Gene expression regarding ERs and PPARs with PFOA exposure was examined by Real-time polymerase chain reactions. According to the CellTiter-Blue® viability assay results, there was a significant decrease in cell viability of the MCF-7 cells when exposed to 100μM PFOA for 48 hours. The Real-time PCR data indicated that when exposed to PFOA at 50μM and 100μM concentrations for 24 hours PPARα and ERα gene expression decreased significantly at both concentrations, while a change in gene expression was not observed in PPARβ or PPARγ. ERβ was not expressed at a high enough level in the MCF-7 cells to garner any gene expression data, even from the control samples.