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Effects of lead and/or zinc exposure during the second stage of rapid postnatal brain growth on delta-aminolevulinate dehydratase and negative geotaxis of suckling rats

By E.C. Goulart, C.A.T. Pereira, R.C. Garcia, M.B.O. Giacomelli and A.L.S. Rodrigues


Lead has been shown to produce cognitive and motor deficits in young rats that could be mediated, at least in part, by inhibition of the zinc-containing heme biosynthetic enzyme delta-aminolevulinate dehydratase (ALA-D). In the present study we investigated the effects of lead and/or zinc treatment during the second stage of rapid postnatal brain development on brain, kidney and blood ALA-D specific activity, as well as the negative geotaxis behavior of rats. Eight-day-old Wistar rats were injected intraperitoneally with saline, lead acetate (8 mg/kg) and/or zinc chloride (2 mg/kg) daily for five consecutive days. Twenty-four hours after treatment, ALA-D activity was determined in the absence and presence of DL-dithiothreitol (DTT). The negative geotaxis behavior was assessed in 9- to 13-day-old rats. Treatment with lead and/or zinc did not affect body, brain or kidney weights or brain- or kidney-to-body weight ratios of the animals. In spite of the absence of effect of any treatment on ALA-D specific activity in brain, kidney and blood, the reactivation index with DTT was higher in the groups treated with lead or lead + zinc than in the control group, in brain, kidney and blood (mean ± SEM; brain: 33.33 ± 4.34, 38.90 ± 8.24, 13.67 ± 3.41; kidney: 33.50 ± 2.97, 37.60 ± 2.67, 15.80 ± 2.66; blood: 63.95 ± 3.73, 56.43 ± 5.93, 31.07 ± 4.61, respectively, N = 9-11). The negative geotaxis response behavior was not affected by lead and/or zinc treatment. The results indicate that lead and/or zinc treatment during the second stage of rapid postnatal brain growth affected ALA-D, but zinc was not sufficient to protect the enzyme from the effects of lead in brain, kidney and blood

Topics: lead acetate, zinc chloride, delta-aminolevulinate dehydratase, negative geotaxis, postnatal brain growth, Biology (General), QH301-705.5, Science, Q, DOAJ:Biology, DOAJ:Biology and Life Sciences, Medicine (General), R5-920, Medicine, R, DOAJ:Medicine (General), DOAJ:Health Sciences
Publisher: Associação Brasileira de Divulgação Científica
Year: 2001
DOI identifier: 10.1590/S0100-879X2001000600014
OAI identifier:
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