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The genotoxicity and cytotoxicity of dermally-administered cadmium: effects of dermal cadmium administration.

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Cadmium, unlike zinc, selenium and copper, has no known biological importance, and therefore, it is classified as a carcinogen in humans, as well as in animals. The effect(s) of levels of dermally-administered cadmium on cadmium genotoxicity and cytotoxicity was investigated in Harlan Sprague-Dawley rats for 14, 21, 28, 35 and 42 days at concentrations of 14 and 28 mg/kg/day. Exposure of rats to cadmium via dermal application caused lesions on the skin (hyperkeratosis, acanthosis and scabbing, alopecia and erythema) and tumors in the scrotum. Anatomical changes, such as distention of the stomach, atrophy of kidney and liver and loss of body weight were also observed in these rats. The toxic effects of cadmium on cell ultrastructure were nuclear membrane damage, chromatin condensation, regression of mitochondrial cristae and ultimately cell death. Analyses of the brain, kidney and liver cells of rats exposed to cadmium, clearly showed DNA damage. Of the three organs examined, DNA from kidney cells sustained the most damage followed by DNA in liver cells. There is a positive correlation between Cd dose(s) and duration of exposure and the extent of DNA damage.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Biology, Division of Environmental Toxicology, College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Florida A&M University, Tallahassee, FL 32307, USA.

Publication date: June 1, 1998

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  • The International Journal of Molecular Medicine is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal devoted to the publication of high quality studies related to the molecular mechanisms of human disease. The journal welcomes research on all aspects of molecular and clinical research, ranging from biochemistry to immunology, pathology, genetics, human genomics, microbiology, molecular pathogenesis, molecular cardiology, molecular surgery and molecular psychology.

    The International Journal of Molecular Medicine aims to provide an insight for researchers within the community in regard to developing molecular tools and identifying molecular targets for the diagnosis and treatment of a diverse number of human diseases.
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