The Toxicity Assessment of ethyl p-hydroxybenzoate in Nematode C. elegans

Ting Xue, Linsong Yang


Ethyl paraben (EP) is an antiseptic commonly used in food, medicine, cosmetics, and children's products. Parabens are popular due to their broad antibacterial spectrum, low cost, and stable pH characteristics, and though once considered safe as well as effective, recent studies have shown that EP has considerable oestrogenic activity which has adverse effect on the human reproduction system. In our study, we used a Caenorhabditis elegans assay system to investigate EP toxicity and its underlying mechanism. We found that prolonged exposure to EP decreased body length and locomotion behavior in the nematodes. Furthermore, most of the toxicities were transferable. Locomotion behavior defects were only partially recovered in progeny, and higher concentrations caused more significant defects; locomotion behavior improved after subsequent exposure to mutants PMK-1 and PMK-3. Taken together, the results showed that EP exerts adverse effect on C. elegans and may induce toxicity through various underlying mechanisms.

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