Toxicity of N-(3,5-dichlorophenyl)succinimide and metabolites to rat renal proximal tubules and mitochondria

Michael D. Aleo, Gary O. Rankin, Theresa J. Cross, Rick G. Schnellmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


The acute nephrotoxicity caused by N-(3,5-dichlorophenyl)succinimide (NDPS) has been shown to be due to a metabolite(s) of the parent compound. This study examined the toxicity of NDPS, its known metabolites N-(3,5-dichlorophenyl)-2-hydroxysuccinimide (NDHS), N-(3,5-dichlorophenyl)-2-hydroxysuccinamic acid (NDHSA), N-(3,5-dichlorophenyl)malonamic acid (DMA), N-(3,5-dichlorophenyl)succinamic acid (NDPSA), and two postulated metabolites N-(3,5-dichlorophenyl)maleamic acid (NDPSA) and N-(3,5-dichlorophenyl)maleimide (NDPM) to suspensions of renal proximal tubules (RPT) prepared from male Fischer 344 rats. Tubule viability and mitochondrial function were not adversely affected by exposure of RPT to either 1 mM NDPS, NDHS, NDHSA, DMA, NDPSA, or NDPMA for 4 h. However, NDPM caused a concentration-(25-100 μM) and time-dependent (0.25-4 h) loss in basal and nystatin-stimulated oxygen consumption and tubule viability. Investigations using isolated renal cortical mitochondria (RCM) showed that NDPM was a potent inhibitor of mitochondrial function. Isolated RCM respiring on pyruvate/malate and exposed to NDPM exhibited a concentration (25-100 μM) dependent decrease in state 3 and state 4 respiration. Inhibition of mitochondrial state 3 respiration by NDPM was mediated through site 1 of the respiratory chain. NDPM did not inhibit cytochrome c-cytochrome oxidase or the electron transport chain. These results indicated that NDPS, its known metabolites, and NDPMA were not directly toxic to rat RPT. However, the postulated metabolite NDPM, was a potent tubule cytotoxicant that inhibited mitochondrial function in isolated RCM and RPT and may produce cell death through this mechanism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)109-121
Number of pages13
JournalChemico-Biological Interactions
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1991
Externally publishedYes


  • Fungicides
  • Maleimides
  • Nephrotoxicity
  • Proximal tubules
  • Rat renal
  • Succinimides

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Toxicology


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