Neurobehavioral teratogenicity of perfluorinated alkyls in an avian model.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Perfluorinated alkyls are widely-used agents that accumulate in ecosystems and organisms because of their slow rate of degradation. There is increasing concern that these agents may be developmental neurotoxicants and the present study was designed to develop an avian model for the neurobehavioral teratogenicity of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS). Fertilized chicken eggs were injected with 5 or 10mg/kg of either compound on incubation day 0. On the day of hatching, imprinting behavior was impaired by both compounds. We then explored underlying mechanisms involving the targeting of protein kinase C (PKC) isoforms (alpha, beta, gamma) in the intermedial part of the hyperstriatum ventrale, the region most closely associated with imprinting. With PFOA exposure, cytosolic PKC concentrations were significantly elevated for all three isoforms; despite the overall increase in PKC expression, membrane-associated PKC was unaffected, indicating a defect in PKC translocation. In contrast, PFOS exposure evoked a significant decrease in cytosolic PKC, primarily for the beta and gamma isoforms, but again without a corresponding change in membrane-associated enzyme; this likely partial, compensatory increases in translocation to offset the net PKC deficiency. Our studies indicate that perfluorinated alkyls are indeed developmental neurotoxicants that affect posthatch cognitive performance but that the underlying synaptic mechanisms may differ substantially among the various members of this class of compounds, setting the stage for disparate outcomes later in life.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Pinkas, A; Slotkin, TA; Brick-Turin, Y; Van der Zee, EA; Yanai, J

Published Date

  • 2010

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 32 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 182 - 186

PubMed ID

  • 19945530

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC2860088

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1872-9738

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States