Fluoride Action Network


Endemic fluorosis (EF) has been listed as one of the serious public health problems in many countries. Long-term exposure to high fluoride can lead to severe neuropathological damage to the brain. Although long-term research has revealed the mechanism of some brain inflammation caused by excessive fluoride, the role of intercellular interactions, especially immune cells, in brain damage is still unclear. Fluoride can induce ferroptosis and inflammation in the brain in our study. A co-culture system of neutrophil extranets and primary neuronal cells showed that fluoride can aggravate neuronal cell inflammation by causing neutrophil extranets (NETs).

In terms of the mechanism of action, we found that fluoride leads to the opening of calcium ion channels by causing neutrophil calcium imbalance, which in turn leads to the opening of L-type calcium ion channels (LTCC). Extracellular free iron enters the cell from the open LTCC, leading to neutrophil ferroptosis, which releases NETs. Blocking LTCC (nifedipine) rescued neutrophil ferroptosis and reduced the generation of NETs. Inhibition of ferroptosis (Fer-1) did not block cellular calcium imbalance. In summary, our study explores the role of NETs in fluoride-induced brain inflammation and suggests that blocking calcium channels may be one of the possibilities to rescue fluoride-induced ferroptosis.