• The Exploration of Apoptotic Pathways in MCF-7 Cells in Response to PFOA

      Cannon, Jennifer D.; Smith, April; Peloquin, Rachel; Gillen, Laura; Urizar, David O.; Department of Biological Sciences (2017-03)
      Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) is a widely-used fluoropolymer that has been identified as potentially harmful in high concentrations. Previous experiments conducted in MCF-7 breast cancer cells have shown that 50μM and 100μM PFOA decreases estrogen receptor alpha (ERα) mRNA and protein, peroxisome-proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPAR γ) mRNA, and causes a 25% decrease in cell viability within 48h of treatment. It is hypothesized that the decreased levels of ER and PPAR leads to apoptosis in these cells. Experiments are currently underway using the Caspase-Glo® 3/7 Assay (Promega) to determine if this is the mechanism by which PFOA decreases viability in MCF-7 cells. Furthermore, a Qiagen® RT2 Profiler 96-Well PCR Apoptosis Array is being performed to determine the effect that PFOA has on 84 apoptotic genes and begin to provide some insight into the mechanisms of apoptosis in MCF-7 cells. It is anticipated that anti-apoptotic genes such as Bcl-2, known to be regulated by ER , will be decreased in PFOA-treated MCF-7 cells.