Protective Role of Folic Acid Against Aluminum Induced Toxicity in Pregnant Rats and Their Fetuses.

El-Dakdoky, Mai H. 


The present study aims to investigate the developmental toxicity and the neurotoxicological impacts of aluminum on pregnant rats and their fetuses and to examine the protective role of folic acid in reversing the induced effects. Four groups of pregnant rats were treated by gavage with; distilled water (control group, n= 10), Folic acid (20 mg/kg b.wt., n=10), AlCl3 (100 mg/kg b.wt., n= 13), and a combination of AlCl3 and folic acid at the same dosage level (n= 13) respectively from the 1st to the 19th day of gestation. A marked non-significant difference was observed between AlCl3 treated group and the control in the number of implantation sites, resorptions, pre- and post- implantation loss and dead and live fetuses. However, a significant decrease in fetal body weight as well as a significant increase in the number of fetuses with morphologic and skeletal defects was observed in fetuses maternally treated with AlCl3 in comparing with that of the control. Also, the results indicated that AlCl3 administration induced neurological defects in the cerebrum of both mothers and fetuses, it resulted in induction of oxidative stress indicated by a significant increase in Malondialdehyde concentration and a decrease in the total antioxidant capacity, as well as significant increase in nitric oxide level (NO) and DNA damage that might lead to neuronal cell death. Most of the above parameters responded positively with folic acid administration. In conclusion, AlCl3 induced developmental toxicity indicated by low fetal body weight and increased external and skeletal anomalies as well as induced neurotoxicity indicated by induction of oxidative stress, overproduction of NO and DNA damage. Folic acid supplementation reduced the Al – induced changes.

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Keywords AlCl3; Developmental toxicity; External anomalies; Skeletal malformations; Neurotoxicity; Oxidative stress; NO; DNA fragmentation; Folic acid
Issue Date 2008
Publisher The Zoological Society A.R.E.
Journal Egyptian Journal of Zoology 
ISSN 1110-6344

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