Open Access

Effect of selected bisphenol derivatives on nuclear receptor expression in ovarian cell line COV434


Objectives. Bisphenol A (BPA), as an indispensable plastic additive, has also been proven as an endocrine disruptor associated with adverse health effects including impaired ovarian function and cancer. Due to the restrictions of its usage, several analogs have been employed to replace BPA. Although many studies revealed a harmfulness in the biological effects of BPA analogs, their specific targets remain largely unknown. Nuclear receptors (NRs) may be one of the most important targets of bisphenols. Therefore, in this study, our attention was directed to explore the effect of BPA and its analogs, AF and S, on the mRNA expression of selected NRs involved in the steroidogenic and carcinogenic pathways in the human granulosa cell line COV434. The NRs investigated included: thyroid hormone receptor α (THRA), peroxisome proliferator activating receptor β/δ (PPARD), retinoid X receptor α (RXRA), chicken ovalbumin upstream promoter-transcription factor II (COUPTFII), nuclear receptor-related protein 1 (NURR1), and liver receptor homolog-1 (LRH1).

Methods. COV434 cells were treated with the bisphenols at the concentrations of 10−9 M, 10−7 M, and 10−5 M, and after 24 and 48 h, cell viability was monitored by the MTS assay and gene expressions were analyzed using RT-qPCR.

Results. Bisphenol treatment did not alter the COV434 cell viability. After 24 h, the expression of neither of the NRs was changed. Likewise, after 48 h, the expression of the selected genes was not altered. However, both BPAF and BPS increased, at the highest concentration (10−5 M) used, the mRNA levels of both PPARD and NURR1 NRs after 48 h of the treatment. In the BPA-treated groups, no significant upregulation was observed.

Conclusions. In the present study, the effect of bisphenols on COUP-TFII, Nurr1, and LRH-1 NRs was investigated for the first time. Although generally we did not observe that BPs provoked any alterations in the expression of the selected NRs in COV434 cells, at specific concentrations and time points they might alter mRNA expression of certain NRs (NURR1, PPARD).