Lasting DNA Damage and Aberrant DNA Repair Gene Expression Profile Are Associated with Post-Chronic Cadmium Exposure in Human Bronchial Epithelial Cells

Heng Wee Tan, Zhan-Ling Liang, Yue Yao, Dan-Dan Wu, Hai-Ying Mo, Jiang Gu, Jen-Fu Chiu, Yan-Ming Xu, Andy T. Y. Lau

    OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review

    9 Citaten (Scopus)
    95 Downloads (Pure)


    Cadmium (Cd) is a widespread environmental pollutant and carcinogen. Although the exact mechanisms of Cd-induced carcinogenesis remain unclear, previous acute/chronic Cd exposure studies have shown that Cd exerts its cytotoxic and carcinogenic effects through multiple mechanisms, including interference with the DNA repair system. However, the effects of post-chronic Cd exposure remain unknown. Here, we establish a unique post-chronic Cd-exposed human lung cell model (the CR0 cells) and investigate the effects of post-chronic Cd exposure on the DNA repair system. We found that the CR0 cells retained Cd-resistant property even though it was grown in Cd-free culture medium for over a year. The CR0 cells had lasting DNA damage due to reduced DNA repair capacity and an aberrant DNA repair gene expression profile. A total of 12 DNA repair genes associated with post-chronic Cd exposure were identified, and they could be potential biomarkers for identifying post-chronic Cd exposure. Clinical database analysis suggests that some of the DNA repair genes play a role in lung cancer patients with different smoking histories. Generally, CR0 cells were more sensitive to chemotherapeutic (cisplatin, gemcitabine, and vinorelbine tartrate) and DNA damaging (H2O2) agents, which may represent a double-edged sword for cancer prevention and treatment. Overall, we demonstrated for the first time that the effects of post-chronic Cd exposure on human lung cells are long-lasting and different from that of acute and chronic exposures. Findings from our study unveiled a new perspective on Cd-induced carcinogenesis-the post-chronic exposure of Cd. This study encourages the field of post-exposure research which is crucial but has long been ignored.

    Originele taal-2English
    Aantal pagina's21
    Nummer van het tijdschrift8
    StatusPublished - 6-aug-2019

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