The effect of prenatal exposure on disposition of hexachloronaphthalene in female Wistar rats and fetal compartment
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Medical University of Lodz, Łódź, Poland (Faculty of Pharmacy, Department of Toxicology)
Nofer Institute of Occupational Medicine, Łódź, Poland (Department of Toxicology and Carcinogenesis)
Medical University of Lodz, Łódź, Poland (Faculty of Pharmacy)
Online publication date: 2018-06-04
Corresponding author
Joanna Stragierowicz   

Medical University of Lodz, Faculty of Pharmacy, Department of Toxicology, Muszyńskiego 1, 90-151 Łódź, Poland
Int J Occup Med Environ Health. 2018;31(5):685-95
Objectives: Due to structural and toxicological similarities to 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD), polychlorinated naphthalenes (PCNs) were included in the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) in 2015. Hexachloronaphthalene (HxCN) is considered to be one of the most toxic congeners of PCNs. The objective of this study was to determine the maternal and fetal tissue concentrations of hexachloronaphthalene after a single administration. Material and Methods: Pregnant female Outbred Wistar rats were used for the study. The [14C]-HxCN was administered in a single oral dose of 0.3 mg/rat (150 kBq/rat) on gestational day 17 (GD17), GD18 or GD19. All dams were sacrificed on GD20. The blood and selected tissue samples taken from mothers and fetuses 24 h, 48 h or 72 h after exposure were evaluated for the distribution of HxCN. Results: Maximum concentrations of HxCN in pregnant rats were found in the liver and adipose tissue. Relatively high levels of HxCN were also reported in the spleen, ovaries, adrenal glands and uterus, as well as in the sciatic nerve, brain and kidneys. Hexachloronaphthalene penetrates through the blood-brain barrier (BBB), as evidenced by twice the concentration in the brain compared to the blood concentration, and through the placental barrier, as indicated by the level of maternal-fetal compartment (placenta, amniotic fluid, litter). Among the examined fetal tissues, the highest levels of HxCN were found in the kidneys and in the brain. The concentrations in these organs were higher than that found in the maternal blood. Conclusions: This paper is the first to detail the concentrations of HxCN in the maternal tissues and the transplacental transfer of the tested compound to the fetuses. The exposure of pregnant rats to HxCN results in its accumulation in the maternal liver, fat tissue, reproductive and nervous system, and particularly in the fetal brain. This demonstrates both the effective absorption and significant systemic accumulation which could lead to negative health implications. Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2018;31(5):685–695
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