Hamster and rat fetal cells have low spontaneous mutation frequencies and rates.

TitleHamster and rat fetal cells have low spontaneous mutation frequencies and rates.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2001
JournalMutation research
Date Published2001

Somatic cells of whole Syrian hamster fetuses (gestation day 13) were isolated and tested by an in vivo/in vitro mutation assay for spontaneous mutation frequencies using independent 6-thioguanine (6-TG), diphtheria toxin (DT), and ouabain mutation selection systems. Optimum conditions were ascertained. For 6-TG mutants, a total of 21 mutants were found in cells from 24 litters on 1993 plates, for an overall mutant frequency of 1.8 x 10(-7) per viable cell with 12 positive litters. In all, 26 litters were tested using DT; 77 mutants were found in 840 plates, yielding an overall mutant frequency of 2.6 x 10(-7), with 20 positive litters. No correlations or familial effects were found among 23 litters tested for both DT and 6-TG. Of 14 litters which were tested for ouabain mutants, 4 were positive, with a total of 5 mutants found on 988 plates, for an overall mutant frequency of 7.6 x 10(-8). For 14 F344 rat fetuses, the overall 6-TG spontaneous mutation frequency was determined to be 1.6 x 10(-7). From the data, estimates of mutation rates were calculated. For mutation to 6-TG resistance the rate was 8.3 x 10(-8), for mutation to DT resistance the rate was 8.1 x 10(-8) and for ouabain, the spontaneous mutation rate was 5.7 x 10(-8). For F344 rat, the spontaneous mutation rate was 1.1 x 10(-7). Induced mutant frequencies after in utero exposure to 1 mmol/kg N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea (ENU) were 311, 135 and 200 times the spontaneous value for 6-TG, DT and ouabain, respectively, for Syrian hamster fetal cells and 125 times the spontaneous 6-TG value for fetal F344 rat cells. Both spontaneous mutation frequencies and underlying spontaneous mutation rates are low, consistent with the view that fetal cells exercise extremely tight control over DNA fidelity.

Short TitleMutat Res
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