2,3,7,8-Tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioin kills immature thymoytes by Ca2+-mediated endonudease activation

David J. McConkey, Pia Hartzell, Steven K. Duddy, Helen Håkansson, Sten Orrenius

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

424 Scopus citations


Suspensions of thymocytes from young rats were incubated with 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD), which resulted in a sustained increase in cytosolic free Ca2+ concentration followed by DNA fragmentation and loss of cell viability. Both the Ca2+ increase and DNA fragmentation were pervented in cells treated with the inhibitor of protein synthesis, cycloheximide, and DNA fagmentation and cell killing were not detected when cells were incubated in a "Ca2+-free" medium or pretreated with high concentrations of the calcium probe, quin-2 tetraacetoxymethyl ester. These results indicate that TCDD can kill immature thymocytes by initiating a suicide process similar to that previously described for glucocorticoid hormones.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)256-259
Number of pages4
Issue number4876
StatePublished - 1988
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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