Mechanisms of the direct effects of oil-related contaminants on ovarian cells


We studied the influence of oil-related environmental contaminants (OREC) on the viability, hormone secretion, and protein expression using cultured porcine ovarian granulosa cells. Addition of benzene and xylene promoted proliferation and apoptosis and reduced ovarian cell viability whereas toluene induced apoptosis only. The release of progesterone (P4) and oxytocin (OT) was promoted by benzene and xylene, and suppressed by toluene while prostaglandin F (PGF) output was stimulated by benzene and toluene, but not xylene. The addition of FSH to the culture medium increased ovarian cell proliferation and hormone release, but did not affect apoptosis. However, this FSH’s proliferative effect has been prevented in presence of benzene. On the other hand and in the presence of FSH, toluene prevented P4 release and decreased PGF release, while xylene prevented PGF release. We concluded that OREC can affect reproductive processes by directly influencing ovarian cell proliferation, apoptosis, viability, hormone release, and response to gonadotropins.

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The authors thank Ms. Žofia Kuklová and Ms. Katarina Tothová for assistance with experiments.

Funding information

This work was supported by the Slovak Research and Development Agency under contract nos. APVV-14-0001, APVV-15-0296, and APVV-14-0763, and by the Scientific Grant Agency of the Ministry of Education, Science, and Sport of SR under the contracts VEGA 1/0327/16 and VEGA 1/0392/17. This work was supported by Researchers Supporting Project number RSP-2019/17, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

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Correspondence to Abdel Halim Harrath.

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Sirotkin, A.V., Kadasi, A., Baláži, A. et al. Mechanisms of the direct effects of oil-related contaminants on ovarian cells. Environ Sci Pollut Res (2019).

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  • Benzene
  • Xylene
  • Toluene
  • Ovarian cell
  • Viability