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Title: Effect of Allyl Isothiocyanate on developmental toxicity in exposed Xenopus laevis embryos

item WILLIAMS, JOHN - Jackson State University
item RAYBURN, JAMES - Jackson State University
item CLINE, GEOERGE - Jackson State University
item SAUTERER, ROGER - Jackson State University
item Friedman, Mendel

Submitted to: Elsevier
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/10/2014
Publication Date: 12/17/2014
Citation: Williams, J.R., Rayburn, J.R., Cline, G.R., Sauterer, R., Friedman, M. 2014. Effect of Allyl Isothiocyanate on developmental toxicity in exposed Xenopus laevis embryos. Elsevier. (2):222-227. doi: 10.1016/j.toxrep.2014.12.005.

Interpretive Summary: Allyl isothiocyanate is pungent, volatile, colorless oil that is synthesized in Brassica plants (mustard, horseradish, wasabi) of the Cruciferae family. After breakage of the seeds, the glucosinolate (sinigrin) compound undergoes enzyme-catalyzed hydrolysis to produce allyl isothiocyanate. Interest in allyl isothiocyanate arises from the fact that it is reported to exhibit numerous beneficial effects that include inhibition of foodborne pathogens as well as adverse effects. The objective of the present collaborative study with the Biology Department of Jackson State University, Jacksonville, Alabama was to find out if this highly reactive molecule has the potential to induce teratogenicity in frog embryos. The results show that this seems to be the case. Since we previously reported that the amino acid L-cysteine and the natural peptide glutathione protected the embryos against adverse effects of the processing-induced food ingredient acrylamide (Journal of Agicultural and Food Chemistry Volume 58, page 11172, 2010), expectations are that sulfur amino acids would also protect against allyl isothiocyanate-induced adverse effects by a similar mechanism. This study was supported by a research grant from the Biology Department of Jackson State University.

Technical Abstract: The pungent natural compound allyl isothiocyanate isolated from the seeds of Cruciferous (Brassica) plants such as mustard is reported to exhibit numerous beneficial health-promoting antimicrobial, antifungal, anticarcinogenic, cardioprotective, and neuroprotective properties. Because it is also reported to damage DNA and is toxic to aquatic organisms, the objective of the present study was to determine whether it possesses teratogenic properties. The frog embryo teratogenesis assay-Xenopus (FETAX) was used to determine the following measures of developmental toxicity of the natural allyl isothiocyanate: (a) 96-h LC50, defined as the median concentration causing 50% embryo lethality; (b) 96-h EC50, defined as the median concentration causing 50% malformations of the surviving embryos; and (c) teratogenic index (TI), equal to 96-h LC50/ 96-h EC50. The quantitative results and the photographs of embryos before and after exposure to allyl isothiocyanate suggest that this compound seems to exhibit moderate teratogenic properties. The results indicate differences in the toxicity of allyl isothiocyanate towards exposed embryos observed in the present study compared to reported adverse effects of allyl isothiocyanate in fish, rodents, and humans. Possible approaches are suggested to protect against adverse effects of allyl isothiocyanate.