Prenatal Arsenic Exposure is Associated with Decreased Mitochondrial DNA Copy Number and Increased Genomic Indicators of Reactive Oxygen Species in Newborn Cord Blood Leukocytes Public Deposited

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  • March 21, 2019
  • Gallo, Gabriella
    • Affiliation: Gillings School of Global Public Health, Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering
  • To better understand the mechanisms of inorganic arsenic (iAs) toxicity during the prenatal period, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) copy number was examined in the Biomarkers of Exposure to ARsenic (BEAR) pregnancy cohort from Gómez Palacio, Mexico. Newborn cord blood and maternal whole blood leukocytes examined for mtDNA copy number were compared to iAs in maternal drinking water and total maternal urinary arsenic (U-tAs). Analysis of mtDNA and iAs exposure measures revealed a negative association between maternal U-tAs and newborn mtDNA content. Additional analysis of gene expression changes associated with mtDNA copy number identified 3 genes that are known to play a role in ROS protection, and 22 genes that have been shown to be altered by arsenic exposure. This study highlights mtDNA as a novel responder to prenatal arsenic exposure that may contribute to mechanisms of iAs toxicity in utero.
Date of publication
Resource type
  • Jaspers, Ilona
  • Stewart, Jill
  • Fry, Rebecca
  • Master of Science
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Graduation year
  • 2018

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