Growth and neurite stimulating effects of the neonicotinoid pesticide clothianidin on human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells.
Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 2019 Nov 15 ;383:114777. Epub 2019 Oct 15. PMID: 31626844
Neonicotinoids are one of most widely used pesticides targeting nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) of insects. Recent epidemiological evidence revealed increasing amounts of neonicotinoids detected in human samples, raising the critical question of whether neonicotinoids affect human health. We investigated the effects of a neonicotinoid pesticide clothianidin (CTD) on human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells as in vitro models of human neuronal cells. Cellular and functional effects of micromolar doses of CTD were evaluated by changes in cell growth, intracellular signaling activities and gene expression profiles. We examined further the effects of CTD on neuronal differentiation by measuring neurite outgrowth. Exposure to CTD (1-100 μM) significantly increased the number of cells within 24 h of culture. The nAChRs antagonists, mecamylamine and SR16584, inhibited this effect, suggesting human α3β4 nAChRs could be targets of neonicotinoids. We observed a transient intracellular calcium influx and increased phosphorylationof extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 shortly after exposure to CTD. Transcriptome analysis revealed that CTD down-regulated genes involved in neuronal function (e.g., formation of filopodia and calcium ion influx) and morphology (e.g., axon guidance signaling and cytoskeleton signaling); these changes were reflected by a finding of increased neurite length during neuronal differentiation. These findings provide novel insight into the potential risks of neonicotinoids to the human nervous system.