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Oxygen (O2) is an essential element for aerobic respiration. Atmospheric concentration of O2 is approximately 21%. Mammalian cells, however, are generally adapted to O2 levels much lower than atmospheric conditions. The pericellular levels of O2 must also be maintained within a fairly narrow range to meet the demands of cells. This applies equally to cells in vivo and cells in primary cultures. There has been growing interest in the performance of cell culture experiments under various O2 levels to study molecular and cellular responses. To this end, a range of technologies (e.g. gas-permeable technology) and instruments (e.g. gas-tight boxes and gas-controlled incubators) have been developed. It should be noted, however, that some of these have limitations and they are still undergoing refinement. Nevertheless, better results should be possible when technical concerns are taken into account. This paper aims to review various aspects of O2 level adjustment in primary cell cultures, regulation of pericellular O2 gradients and possible effects of the cell culture medium.
The Effect of Laurel Leaf Extract Against Toxicity Induced by 2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-P-Dioxin in Cultured Rat Hepatocytes
2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD) is a very toxic environmental pollutant that raises great public concern about its impact on human health. Recent studies indicate that laurel leaf extract exhibits antioxidant properties that can counter the toxic effects of certain compounds in the liver. The aim of this study was to assess how effective LE is against the toxicity of TCDD in a primary culture of rat hepatocytes. The extract (50 mg L-1, 100 mg L-1, and 200 mg L-1) was added to cultures alone or with TCDD (1.61 mg L-1 and 3.22 mg L-1) for 48 hours. Cell viability was measured using the [3-(4,5-dimethyl-thiazol-2-yl) 2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide] (MTT) assay and the lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) cytotoxicity assay, while oxidative damage was assessed by measuring total antioxidant capacity (TAC) and total oxidative stress (TOS). DNA damage was also analysed using the micronucleus (MN) assay of the cultured hepatocytes. TCDD alone lowered, and laurel extract had no effect on cell viability. TCDD also increased TOS and significantly decreased TAC. It significantly increased the frequency of micronucleated hepatocytes in a dose-dependent manner. In cultures exposed to LE alone, TOS did not change and TAC significantly increased in a dose-dependent manner. Added to TCDD, laurel countered its toxic effects and showed protective effects against TCDD-mediated DNA damage. This points to the therapeutic potential of laurel against TCDD toxicity in the liver.
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