In vitro effects of PCDDs/Fs on NK-like cell activity of Eisenia andrei earthworms

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Hayet Belmeskine *
Sami Haddad
Louise Vandelac
Michel Fournier
(*) Corresponding Author:
Hayet Belmeskine |


In this study, we assessed in vitro the effects of PCDD/Fs on the NK-like cell activity in Eisenia andrei earthworms using flow cytometry for analysis. NK-like coelomocytes isolated from E. andrei and used as effectors were exposed to various concentrations of PCDDs/Fs mixture, C1 (6.25x10-3 ng 2378- TCDD/mL), C2 (12.5x10-3 ng 2378-TCDD/mL) and C3 (25x10-3 ng 2378-TCDD/mL), before adding them to human tumoral cells (K562) used as targets. We evaluated the percentage of targets lysed by Nk-like cells. The results showed a significant stimulation of the NKlike activity at C3 when PCDD/Fs were not removed from effectors before contact with targets, while no effects were noted when the effectors were washed (PCDD/Fs removed) or fixed. Assessment of the viability of the targets (K562), exposed alone and separately from effectors, to the three concentrations of PCDD/Fs, C1, C2 and C3, showed that all these concentrations were cytotoxic for K562. Results suggest that PCDD/Fs concentrations tested in this assay may be considered too low to induce suppressive effects on the immune function such as the NK-like activity in E. andrei earthworms.

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Author Biographies

Hayet Belmeskine, INRS-Institut Armand Frappier, Laval

Ph.D student

Sami Haddad, Département de Santé Environnementale et Santé au Travail, Université de Montréal, Montréal


Louise Vandelac, Département des Sciences de l’Environnement de l’Université du Québec à Montréal, Montréal


Michel Fournier, INRS-Institut Armand Frappier, Laval