Increase in intracellular Ca(2+) level by phenylsulfamide fungicides, tolylfluanid and dichlofluanid, in rat thymic lymphocytes

Tolylfluanid, a phenylsulfamide fungicide, is one of the many pesticides that are frequently detected in crops. Therefore, its health risk is a concern. Micromolar concentrations of tolylfluanid induce chromosomal aberrations and micronuclei in mammalian lymphocytes. The authors investigated the cellular actions of tolylfluanid and another frequently detected pesticide, dichlofluanid, at submicromolar and micromolar concentrations. Of the cellular actions of chemicals, the action on cellular Ca(2+) homeostasis is important since Ca(2+) is involved in cell signalling and death. Consequently, in this study, the effects of phenylsulfamide fungicides were examined on rat thymocytes by using fluorescent probes in order to further characterise the cellular actions of phenylsulfamide fungicides. Both phenylsulfamide fungicides exhibited biphasic, early and late, increase in intracellular Ca(2+) levels. The early phase was dependent on intracellular Ca(2+) release and increased membrane Ca(2+) permeability. The late phase was owing to Ca(2+) influx via activation of store-operated Ca(2+) channels and the further increase of membrane ionic permeability. Voltage-dependent Ca(2+) channels were not involved. The increases in intracellular Ca(2+) levels by phenylsulfamide fungicides were observed at drug concentrations of 0.1?M or more (up to 10?M). Thus, it is plausible that micromolar concentrations of phenylsulfamide fungicides deregulate intracellular Ca(2+) homeostasis in rat thymocytes. Both phenylsulfamide fungicides at 10?M promoted the transition from intact living cells to living cells with phosphatidylserine-exposed membranes. This was not the case for phenylsulfamide fungicides at 3?M. The potency of tolylfluanid was similar to that of dichlofluanid. Although the information on residual concentrations of tolylfluanid and dichlofluanid is very limited, their residual concentrations do not reach micromolar levels. The authors concluded that it is unlikely that humans will develop adverse effects on exposure to phenylsulfamide fungicides under present environmental conditions.

Authors: Fukunaga E, Enma K, Saitoh S, Nishimura-Danjyobara Y, Oyama Y, Akaike N. ;Full Source: Environmental Toxicology & Pharmacology. 2015 Jun 5;40(1):149-155. doi: 10.1016/j.etap.2015.06.004. [Epub ahead of print] ;