Induction of c-fos gene by mercury chloride in LLC-PK1 cells

Masato Matsuoka, Bambang Wispriyono, Hideki Igisu

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16 Citations (Scopus)


The c-fos, a member of the immediate early genes, has been reported to be expressed in the renal proximal tubule in response to ischemic and toxic injury. In the present study, effects of mercury chloride (HgCl2) on the expression of c-fos were examined in LLC-PK1 cells. The reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) analysis for the semi- quantification of mRNA showed that the treatment of 20 μM HgCl2 markedly increased c-fos mRNA levels. The level of c-f os mRNA began to increase after a 30-min exposure, peaked at 1 h and then returned to the control level at 8 h. The HgCl2-induced c-fos expression was abolished completely by actinomycin-D, indicating it was due to transcriptional activation of the gene. Western blotting immunodetection revealed accumulation of c-Fos protein after 1 h exposure to 20 μM HgCl2. The cytotoxicity of HgCl2 as assayed by mitochondrial dehydrogenase activity (MTT conversion) was observed after 18 h exposure but not at 0.5-8 h. Also, the decrease in cell viability was accompanied with DNA fragmentation, which is characteristic of apoptosis. The present results showed that HgCl2 could induce the early expression of c- fos gene in a renal epithelial cell line.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-106
Number of pages12
JournalChemico-Biological Interactions
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 12 Dec 1997


  • LLC-PK cells
  • Mercury chloride
  • Nephrotoxicity
  • c-Fos protein
  • c-fos


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