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Expression profiling endocrine disruption in ecologically relevant and non-modelvertebrate species.
Trudeau, Vance*,1, Martyniuk, Chris1, Gallant, Natacha 1, Croteau, Maxine 1, 1 University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
ABSTRACT- The concept of endocrine disruption is one where chemicals and pollutants mimic or upset the normal hormonal systems in the body. Such a disruption can have deleterious effects on growth, reproduction and other physiological processes. These effects can lead to developmental abnormalities, reduced fertility and can threaten the health and ultimately the survival of wildlife populations. One challenge in endocrine disruption research is that often the effects cannot be predicted based on chemical structures or overt toxicity. Moreover, the organisms affected by these compounds in the wild are rarely the species used for laboratory-based studies, nor is there genome sequencing projects for these environmentally relevant species. We have used a molecular biological approach called differential display analysis (DDA). This method is used because it does not require extensive gene sequence knowledge. The effects of an estrogenic pollutant octylphenol (OP) on brain function in two indigenous North American species, the snapping turtle (Chelydra serpentina serpentina) and the Leopard frog (Rana pipiens) tadpole was assessed using DDA. We found that OP affects the expression of genes in neurotransmitter systems, and growth and cell differentiation factors. In the case of tadpoles, OP can also disrupt the timing of metamorphosis. We are also developing a DNA microarray or DNA chip approach to assess the multiplicity of effects of endocrine disrupting chemicals. Specifically, we want to determine sex differences and the effects of estrogenic pollutants on brain function in the common goldfish (Carassius auratus), a representative cyprinid used in endocrine research. This presentation will introduce the theory behind using these genomic approaches and discuss specific results obtained in three vertebrate species. Funded by NSERC, CNTC, OGS and Univ. Ottawa (Canada).
Key words: Carassius auratus, Rana pipiens, Chelydra serpentina serpentina, estrogen