Effects of Low-Dose Diethylstilbestrol Exposure on DNA Methylation in Mouse Spermatocytes

Epigenetic modification might be a potential mechanism of low-dose DES-induced male reproductive toxicity

mouse image
These 2015 study results showed that low-dose DES was toxic to spermatocytes and that DNMT expression and DNA methylation were altered in DES-exposed cells. Taken together, these data demonstrate that DNA methylation likely plays an important role in mediating DES-induced spermatocyte toxicity in vitro. Flickr.

2015 Study Abstract

Evidence from previous studies suggests that the male reproductive system can be disrupted by fetal or neonatal exposure to diethylstilbestrol (DES). However, the molecular basis for this effect remains unclear. To evaluate the effects of DES on mouse spermatocytes and to explore its potential mechanism of action, the levels of DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) and DNA methylation induced by DES were detected.

The results showed that low doses of DES inhibited cell proliferation and cell cycle progression and induced apoptosis in GC-2 cells, an immortalized mouse pachytene spermatocyte-derived cell line, which reproduces primary cells responses to E2. Furthermore, global DNA methylation levels were increased and the expression levels of DNMTs were altered in DES-treated GC-2 cells. A total of 141 differentially methylated DNA sites were detected by microarray analysis. Rxra, an important component of the retinoic acid signaling pathway, and mybph, a RhoA pathway-related protein, were found to be hypermethylated, and Prkcd, an apoptosis-related protein, was hypomethylated.

Effects of Low-Dose Diethylstilbestrol Exposure on DNA Methylation in Mouse Spermatocytes, BCBI PubMed PMID: 26588706, PLOS one PMC4654501, Nov 20 2015.

These results showed that low-dose DES was toxic to spermatocytes and that DNMT expression and DNA methylation were altered in DES-exposed cells. Taken together, these data demonstrate that DNA methylation likely plays an important role in mediating DES-induced spermatocyte toxicity in vitro.

More DES DiEthylStilbestrol Resources

Author: DES Daughter

Activist, blogger and social media addict committed to shedding light on a global health scandal and dedicated to raise DES awareness.

4 thoughts on “Effects of Low-Dose Diethylstilbestrol Exposure on DNA Methylation in Mouse Spermatocytes”

  1. Hi
    Does anyone know if it is possible to get a DNA biomarker test for DES Sons in the UK and from who.

      1. Hi
        Not quite. My mother received DES injections before my birth of which I do know that it has affected my endocrine system as I developed a Pituitary tumour 15 yrs ago. As my mother died 25yrs ago and her medical record has been destroyed but I know for certain that she did receive DES injections.
        I came across Biomarker test development in Australia when I made a programme on DES on Welsh Radio in 2014 of which is suppose to detect gene damage from the treatment.
        If this test has become available in the UK one will also need an expert to analyse the result and any result would be kept for my gran children for future years use.

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