Development of a Biosensor for Identifying Novel Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals
Final rept. 18 Jul 2006-17 Jan 2008
SILENT SPRING INST INC NEWTON MA
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Substantial evidence indicates that endocrine disrupting chemicals EDCs particularly those that interact with the estrogen receptor may play a role in reproduction and hormonal cancers in humans and animals. EDCs can mimic or alter the action of the endogenous hormones, which have been shown to affect the reproductive and endocrine systems of mammals and reptiles. EDCs are found in food, water, air, and consumer products and originate from pharmaceutical, industrial, agricultural, and natural sources. Most chemicals in commerce, and their environmental degradation products, have not been screened to identify EDCs. We have investigated a novel technology an estrogen-receptor quartz crystal microbalance ER-QCM biosensor to break through this barrier in identifying EDCs. The ER-QCM detects estrogenic substances using a genetically engineered construct of the hormone-binding domain of the estrogen receptor immobilized to a piezoelectric quartz crystal. The ER-QCM detects the presence of ligands that are known to bind the ER and shows no response for non-binding substances such as testosterone and progesterone. Our ultimate goal is to develop the ER-QCM biosensor as a robust tool for identifying estrogenic activity in complex environmental mixtures and to combine the biosensor with other biophysical methods in order to identify novel estrogenic chemicals in a number of environmental matrices. Experiments were done to determine the viability of ER-QCM for this novel purpose.
- Medicine and Medical Research