Fluoride Action Network



  • Fluorosilicic acid is the most used additive for water fluoridation.
  • Dental fluorosis can be caused by fluorosilicic acid present in drinking water.
  • DNA damage was caused by fluorosilicic acid in mesenchymal stem cells.
  • Fluorosilicic acid altered bone mineralization in mesenchymal stem cells.
  • DNA damage caused by fluorosilicic acid was attributed to oxidative stress.


Excess fluoride in water can produce changes in tooth enamel mineralization and lead to diseases such as dental or skeletal fluorosis. The present study aimed to assess the genotoxic effects, oxidative stress, and osteoblastic mineralization induced by fluorosilicic acid (FA) in murine bone marrow-derived mesenchymal stem cells (BM-MSCs). BM-MSCs were isolated from the femurs and tibias of rats and cultured under standard conditions. Cells exposure occurred for 3, 7, 14, and 21 days to different concentrations of FA (0.6-9.6 mg/L). Cytotoxicity was observed in 14 and 21 days of exposure for all concentrations of FA (cell proliferation below 60 %), and for 3 and 7 days, in which the proliferation was above 80%. Alkaline comet assay results demonstrated significant increased damage at concentrations of 0.3-2.4 mg/L, and the micronucleus test showed increased rates for micronucleus (1.2-2.4 mg/L) and nuclear buds (NBUDs) (0.3-2.4 mg/L) (P < 0.05/Dunnett’s test). An alkaline comet assay modified by repair endonuclease (FPG) was used to detect oxidized nucleobases, which occurred at 0.6 mg/L. The oxidative stress was evaluated by lipid peroxidation (TBARS) and antioxidant activity (TAC). Only lipid peroxidation was increased at concentrations of 0.6 mg/L and 1.2 mg/L (P < 0.001/Tukey’s test). The osteogenesis process determined the level of extracellular matrix mineralization. The mean concentration of Alizarin red increased significantly in 14 days at the 0.6 mg/L concentration group (P < 0.05/Tukey’s test) compared to the control group, and a significant difference between the groups regarding the activity of alkaline phosphatase (ALP) was observed. Unlike other studies, our results indicated that FA in BM-MSCs at concentrations used in drinking water induced genotoxicity, oxidative stress, and acceleration of bone mineralization.

*Original abstract online at https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1383571820301686?via%3Dihub