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Melatonin modulates the cadmium-induced expression of MT-2 and MT-1 metallothioneins in three lines of human tumor cells (MCF-7, MDA-MB-231 and HeLa) *

Cadmium (Cd) is a human carcinogen present in tobacco smoke and contaminated industrial soils. Metallothioneins (MTs) are intracellular proteins involved in protecting against Cd. The toxic effects of Cd can be modified by compounds able to modulate MTs synthesis. Melatonin has oncostatic properties and has also been shown to counteract the toxic effects of Cd. In this study we examine the possible role of melatonin in Cd-induced expression of several MT isoforms (MT-2A, MT-1X, MT-1F and MT-1E) in three human tumor cell lines (MCF-7, MDA-MB-231 and HeLa). We found that, in all cell types, melatonin increases Cd-induced expression of MT-2A, which is considered to protect against Cd toxicity. As regards MT-1 subtypes, which have been related with cell invasiveness and high histological grade tumors, melatonin caused Cd-induced expression in both breast cancer cell lines to decrease. These effects point towards melatonin's possible role as a preventive agent for carcinogenesis dependent on Cd contamination.

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As with any procedure, there could be pain or other substantial risks involved. These concerns should be discussed with your health care provider prior to any treatment so that you have proper informed consent and understand that there are no guarantees to healing.

THE INFORMATION IN THIS WEBSITE IS OFFERED FOR GENERAL EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY AND DOES NOT IMPLY OR GIVE MEDICAL ADVICE. No Doctor/Patient relationship shall be deemed to have arisen simply by reading the information contained on these pages, and you should consult with your personal physician/care giver regarding your medical treatment before undergoing any sort of treatment or therapy.

Published on 11-03-2008
Authors: Carolina Alonso-Gonzaleza, Dolores Mediavillaa, Carlos Martinez-Campaa, Alicia Gonzaleza, Samuel Cosa and Emilio J. Sanchez-Barcelo
Source: Toxicology Letters Volume 181, Issue 3, 1 October 2008, Pages 190-195