Molecular fingerprints of polar narcotic chemicals based on heterozygous essential gene knockout library in Saccharomyces cerevisiae


Cytotoxicity of non-polar narcotic chemicals can be predicted by quantitative structure activity relationship (QSAR) models, but the polar narcotic chemicals’ actual cytotoxicity exceeds the predicted values by their chemical structures. This discrepancy indicates that the molecular mechanism by which polar narcotic chemicals exert their toxicity is unclear. Taking advantage of Saccharomyces cerevisiae (yeast) functional genome-wide heterozygous essential gene knockout mutants, we here have identified the specific molecular fingerprints of two main chemical structure groups (phenols and anilines) of polar narcotic chemicals (dichlorophen (DCP), 4-chlorophenol (4-CP), 2, 4, 6-trichlorophenol (TCP), 3, 4-dichloroaniline (DCA) and N-methylaniline (NMA)) and one non-polar narcotic chemical 2, 2, 2-trichloroethanol (TCE). Especially, we identify 33, 57, 54, 46, 59 and 53 responsive strains through exposure to TCE, DCP, 4-CP, TCP, DCA and NMA with three test concentrations, respectively, revealing that these polar narcotic chemicals have more responsive strains than the non-polar narcotic chemical. Remarkably, we find that the molecular fingerprints of polar narcotic chemicals in different chemical structure groups are obviously varied, particularly phenols and anilines have their own specific molecular fingerprints. Interestingly, our results demonstrate that the molecular toxicity mechanisms of anilines are associated with DNA replication, but phenols are related with pathway of RNA degradation. Additionally, we find that the two knockout strains (SME1 and DIS3) and the three knockout strains (TSC11, RSP5 and HSF1) can specifically respond to exposure to phenols and anilines, respectively. Thus, they may be served as potential biomarkers to distinguish phenols from anilines. Collectively, our works demonstrate that the functional genomic platform of yeast essential gene mutants can not only act as an effective tool to identify key specific molecular fingerprints for polar narcotic chemicals, but also help to understand the molecular mechanisms of polar narcotic chemicals.

Authors: Miao Guan, Wenya Ji, Yue Xu, Lu Yan, Dong Chen, Shengjie Li, Xiaowei Zhang
; Full Source: Chemosphere 2022 Sep 7;308(Pt 2):136343. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2022.136343.