Fluoride Action Network

Abstract

Highlights

  • Fluoride induced histological changes in the liver tissue.
  • Fluoride induced significant damage to hepatocyte in mice.
  • Fluoride caused notable mitochondrial morphological structure change.
  • Drp1/Mff signaling pathway was involved in fluoride-induced mitochondria division.
  • Fluoride induced apoptosis in hepatocyte.

Fluoride, a toxic substance, is widely distributed in the environment and causes serious damage to the body. This study was performed to investigate the effects of fluoride on mitochondrial fission in mouse hepatocytes. A total of 48 mice were equally divided into four groups and admisnistered with NaF in drinking water at fluorine ion concentrations of 0, 25, 50 and 100 mg/L for 70 days. The pathomorphology and ultrastructurre of hepatocytes were then observed. The mitochondrial lesion parameters (number, length, width and vacuolization area) are evaluated. The expression of Drp1, Mff, Fis1, MiD49, MiD51 and Dyn2, which are associated with mitochondrial fission, was determined by quantitative real-time PCR and Western blot analysis. Apoptosis was detected by using TUNEL assay. Results showed that fluoride causes notable changes in the pathological morphology of liver tissues and severely damages the ultrastructure of hepatocytes. Damage manifested as nuclear condensation, nuclear membrane breakdown, mitochondrial vacuolation, increased fragmentation, and mitochondrial fission. Moreover, mRNA and protein expression levels were significantly upregulated in the Drp1/Mff signaling pathway. The mRNA expression levels of Cyt c, caspase 9 and 3 markedly increased in the fluoride treated groups in a dose-dependent manner. The percentage of TUNEL-positive nuclei in the liver remarkably increased after fluoride treatment. Overall, the results indicate that excessive fluoride exposure can increase mitochondrial fission via the Drp1/Mff signaling pathway, severely damage the mitochondrial structure, and lead to apoptosis of hepatocytes.