Periódicos Brasileiros em Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia

Cytotoxic and apoptotic effects of scorpion Leiurus quinquestriatus venom on 293T and C2C12 eukaryotic cell lines

A. A. Omran, M.

Scorpion venom toxicity is of major concern due to its influence on human activities and public health. The cytotoxicity and apoptosis induced by scorpion L. quinquestriatus venom on two established eukaryotic cell lines (293T and C2C12) were analyzed. Both cultured cell lines were incubated with varying doses (10, 20, and 50 µg/ml) of scorpion venom in serum free medium (SFM) for 0.5, 1, 2, 4, and 8 hours at 37°C. The percentage of total lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) released in the culture during venom incubation was used as an index of cell damage. Control culture was treated with an equal amount of SFM. Cell injury was recognized morphologically and apoptosis was researched by a Fluorescing Apoptosis Detection System using the principle of TUNEL (TdT-mediated dUTP Nick-End Labelling) assay and confirmed by another assay concerning nuclear DNA staining with DAPI stain. Cytotoxicity was remarkable and cell survival highly reduced at the highest tested concentration (50 µg/ml). These effects were rapid and observed within 30 minutes. The apparent initial damage to the nucleus and lysis of the plasmalemma and/or organelle membranes, which was evident by a significant increase in cytosolic LDH release, suggested that this toxin acts at the membrane level. The morphological changes that occurred in apoptotic cells include condensation and compartmentalization of nuclear and cytoplasmic materials into structurally preserved membrane-bound fragments or blebs. The cytotoxic effects are dose and time dependent and cell death by apoptosis was more characteristic of 293T cells than C2C12 cells. The apoptotic effects were more prominent and clear in the early stages of toxicity, while other forms of cell damage such as swelling, rupture, and/or necrosis occurred at later stages.

Texto completo