Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Are developing heart valves sensitive to environmental chemicals?

Date:
January 23, 2014
Source:
Carnegie Institution
Summary:
Exposure to environmental endocrine disrupters, such as bisphenol A, which mimic estrogen, is associated with adverse health effects. Bisphenol A is commonly found in plastic bottles and plastic food containers. New research from on the effects of these chemicals on zebrafish shows that embryonic heart valves could be particularly in danger.

The upper image is a three-day-old zebrafish larva showing activation of green fluorescent protein expression in the liver (arrow) following exposure to an estrogenic compound. An unexpected response was also found in the developing heart valves (bottom images, arrows), show in their open (left) and closed (right) states.
Credit: Daniel Gorelick

Exposure to environmental endocrine disrupters, such as bisphenol A, which mimic estrogen, is associated with adverse health effects. Bisphenol A is commonly found in plastic bottles and plastic food containers. New research from a team including Carnegie's Daniel Gorelick and Marnie Halpern on the effects of these chemicals on zebrafish shows that embryonic heart valves could be particularly in danger. It is published by Environmental Health Perspectives.

Related Articles


Estrogen hormones are important in all stages of life. They work by binding to receptors inside a cell, which then travel to the nucleus and act on the DNA by turning select genes on and off. But some synthetic chemicals mimic these estrogen hormones by also binding to the receptors. Exposure to them during early development is associated with increased risk of cancers and abnormal formation of the reproductive tract. So detecting such chemicals and identifying their mechanisms of action is of great importance for developmental scientists.

Gorelick, the lead author, Halpern and Alice Hung of Carnegie, along with Luke Iwanowicz and Vicki Blazer of the Fish Health Branch of the U.S. Geological Survey, used genetically modified zebrafish that show estrogen receptor activity on a cell's DNA.

Their findings indicate that these specially developed zebrafish are great tools not only for detecting environmental endocrine disruptors from river water, but also for identifying which tissues are targeted by these endocrine disruptors

Unexpectedly, estrogen receptors in the developing heart valves were activated by some water samples, which had not been observed previously. This raises interesting questions about the role of estrogen in valve formation and whether environmental chemicals could contribute to valve abnormalities.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Carnegie Institution. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Daniel A. Gorelick, Luke R. Iwanowicz, Alice L. Hung, Vicki S. Blazer, Marnie E. Halpern. Transgenic Zebrafish Reveal Tissue-Specific Differences in Estrogen Signaling in Response to Environmental Water Samples. Environmental Health Perspectives, 2014; DOI: 10.1289/ehp.1307329

Cite This Page:

Carnegie Institution. "Are developing heart valves sensitive to environmental chemicals?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 January 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140123161850.htm>.
Carnegie Institution. (2014, January 23). Are developing heart valves sensitive to environmental chemicals?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140123161850.htm
Carnegie Institution. "Are developing heart valves sensitive to environmental chemicals?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140123161850.htm (accessed October 24, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, October 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Breakfast Debate: To Eat Or Not To Eat?

Breakfast Debate: To Eat Or Not To Eat?

Newsy (Oct. 23, 2014) Conflicting studies published in the same week re-ignited the debate over whether we should be eating breakfast. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Fears Keep Guinea Hospitals Empty

Ebola Fears Keep Guinea Hospitals Empty

AP (Oct. 23, 2014) Fears of Ebola are keeping doctors and patients alike away from hospitals in the West African nation of Guinea. (Oct. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Despite Rising Death Toll, Many Survive Ebola

Despite Rising Death Toll, Many Survive Ebola

AP (Oct. 23, 2014) The family of a Dallas nurse infected with Ebola in the US says doctors can no longer detect the virus in her. Despite the mounting death toll in West Africa, there are survivors there too. (Oct. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Orthodontist Mom Jennifer Salzer on the Best Time for Braces

Orthodontist Mom Jennifer Salzer on the Best Time for Braces

Working Mother (Oct. 22, 2014) Is your child ready? Video provided by Working Mother
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins