Enhanced transcription factor DNA binding and gene expression induced by arsenite or arsenate in renal slices

A. R. Parrish, Hui Zheng Xing Hui Zheng, K. D. Turney, H. S. Younis, A. J. Gandolfi

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58 Scopus citations


Although the kidney represents a target for the accumulation and toxicity of arsenic, little is known about the molecular targets of arsenic in this organ. Therefore, these studies were designed to examine the molecular impact of arsenite [As(III)] and arsenate [As(V)] at low (nanomolar) concentrations. Precision-cut rabbit renal cortical slices were challenged with As(III) or As(V) for up to 8 h. Neither form of the metal induced overt cytotoxicity as assessed by intracellular K+ levels over this time period at concentrations from 0.01-10 μM. In addition, no alterations in the expression of Hsp 60, 70, or 90 were observed. However, induction of heine oxygenase-1 (Hsp 32) was seen following a 4-h challenge with As(III), but not with As(V). As(III) and As(V) induced DNA binding of AP-1 at 2- and 4-h exposure; following a 6-h exposure there was no difference. Although no alteration in the DNA binding activity of ATF-2 was induced by As(III) or As(V), both forms enhanced the DNA binding activity of Elk-1. Enhanced DNA binding activity of AP-1 and Elk-1 correlated with increased gene expression of c-fos, but not c-jun, at 2 h. c-myc gene expression was also induced by As(III) and As(V), albeit at a later time point (6 h). These results suggest that acute arsenic challenge, by either As(III) or As(V), is associated with discrete alterations in the activity of signaling pathways and gene expression in renal tissue.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)98-105
Number of pages8
JournalToxicological Sciences
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1999


  • AP-1, ATF2
  • Arsenate
  • Arsenite
  • Elk-1, renal slices
  • c-fos
  • c-jun
  • c-myc

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology


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