Fluoride Action Network


The following abstract was presented by co-author Jairo Alvarez at the August 2018 Annual Conference of the International Society for Environmental Epidemiology (ISEE) in Ottawa, Canada.

Access to safe drinking water is essential to health, a basic human right and a component of effective policy for health protection. Fluoride (F) is present ubiquitously in the environment, including surface and groundwater. This compound has therapeutic properties to prevent tooth decay at low concentrations, but some research has demonstrated its toxic effects at several concentrations. Clinical and experimental studies have reported that F induces changes in cerebral morphology and biochemistry that affect emotional processes, such as anxiety and depression. The World Health Organization recommends a F concentration of 1.5 mg/L; in Mexico, the legislation establishes 0.7 mg/L as the maximum limit for drinking water. The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of F on behavior through the forced swim test (FST) in rats exposed to F in drinking water.

Male Wistar rats were exposed orally to F in drinking water at concentrations of 0.7, 1.5, 5 and 10 mg/L since gestation until 90 days after parturition. Two control (C1 and C2) groups were performed, C1 with distilled water and C2 with distilled water and fluoxetine at 1 mg/kg during the last 10 days. After exposure, FST and open field test were carried out to determine the depressive-like behavior and to exclude locomotor impairment, respectively.

F exposure at these doses changes the variables evaluated in FST, e.g. immobility, but do not alter locomotive capacities. Fluoxetine administration in C2 group decreased immobility in comparison to C1 group and without changes on locomotor activities.

Results shows that exposure to F during development can yield to a depressive-like behavior in rats, suggesting that high intake of F must be prevented to avoid harmful effects at adulthood.

Author affiliations (Abstract number PO1.2850 on page 1211 of the 2018 ISEE abstracts):

Jairo Alvarez1, Mario Flores2, María I. Pérez1, César Soria1

1. University of Guadalajara, Guadalajara, Mexico.
2. University of Guadalajara, Guadalajara, Mexico.