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Transfer and distribution of accumulated (14C)polychlorinated biphenyls from maternal to fetal and suckling rats


(14C)polychlorinated biphenyls [PCBs (KC-600)] were administered orally to female rats at the dose of 10 mg/kg in olive oil once a week for five weeks. Four weeks after the last administration of (14C)PCBs, they were mated with untreated males. The distribution of total14C was examined in maternal and offspring tissues. The average amount of PCBs accumulated in dams was 44.2% of the dose two weeks after the last administration. The average amount transferred from dam to fetus was 0.003% accumulated in the dam. In the fetus, the highest concentration was found in the fetal placenta followed by the liver, heart, skin, muscle, blood, lung, and brain. The PCBs level in fetal blood was the same as in maternal blood. The average concentration of PCBs in milk was 1.84 ppm. The amount transferred to sucklings increased gradually to about 5% of the maternal PCBs. In suckling rats, PCBs were distributed at the highest concentration in adipose tissues and at intermediate concentrations in the skin, adrenal gland, and liver. The liver to body weight ratio of offspring was significantly increased on the 11th and 25th days after birth. The nursing rats had lower PCBs concentrations compared with the pregnant and virgin rats. The organ concentrations of PCBs in dam and offspring were about ten times as high as those found after treatment with Kane-chlor®-400. These results may suggest that PCBs with higher chlorine content remained in tissues for a longer period of time.

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Takagi, Y., Aburada, S., Hashimoto, K. et al. Transfer and distribution of accumulated (14C)polychlorinated biphenyls from maternal to fetal and suckling rats. Arch. Environ. Contam. Toxicol. 15, 709–715 (1986).

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  • PCBs
  • Biphenyl
  • Maternal Blood
  • Chlorine Content
  • Fetal Blood