Fluoride Action Network



  • Fluoride exposure indirectly increased the levels of F in the offspring’s plasma.
  • Fluorine exposure promoted biochemical imbalance in the offspring’s hippocampus.
  • The 10 mgF/L and 50 mgF/L groups showed an overexpression of the neurotrophin BDNF.
  • In exposed groups modulation of the proteomic profile of the offspring.
  • Proteins associated with glycolytic processes, transport and synaptic communication.

Long-term exposure to high concentrations of fluoride (F) can damage mineralized and soft tissues such as bones, liver, kidney, intestine, and nervous system of adult rats. The high permeability of the blood–brain barrier and placenta to F during pregnancy and lactation may be critical to neurological development. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate the effects of F exposure during pregnancy and lactation on molecular processes and oxidative biochemistry of offspring rats’ hippocampus. Pregnant Wistar rats were randomly assigned into 3 groups in accordance with the drinking water received: G1 – deionized water (control); G2 – 10 mg/L of F and G3 – 50 mg/L of F. The exposure to fluoridated water began on the first day of pregnancy and lasted until the 21st day of breastfeeding (when the offspring rats were weaned). Blood plasma samples of the offspring rats were collected to determine F levels. Hippocampi samples were collected for oxidative biochemistry analyses through antioxidant capacity against peroxyl (ACAP), lipid peroxidation (LPO), and nitrite (NO2) levels. Also, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) gene expression (RT-qPCR) and proteomic profile analyses were performed. The results showed that exposure to both F concentrations during pregnancy and lactation increased the F bioavailability, triggered redox imbalance featured by a decrease of ACAP, increase of LPO and NO2 levels, BDNF overexpression and changes in the hippocampus proteome. These findings raise novel questions regarding potential repercussions on the hippocampus structure and functioning in the different cognitive domains.