Insitute of Cancer Research, University of Vienna, Austria.
The aim of this study was to investigate the chemoprotective effects of mustard sprouts on benzo(a)pyrene [B(a)P]-induced DNA damage in the single cell gel electrophoresis (SCGE)/Hep G2 assay. This model combines the advantages of the SCGE assay with that of human-derived cells that possess inducible phase I and phase II enzymes. Treatment of the cells with small amounts of mustard juice (0.1-1.25 microl/ml) and B(a)P reduced the genotoxic effect of the carcinogen in a dose-dependent manner. Contrary to the results with the juice, unexpected synergistic effects were observed with allyl isothiocyanate (AITC, 0.3 microM), a breakdown product of sinigrin, which is contained in black mustard and many other cruciferous vegetables. Although these concentrations of AITC did not cause DNA damage per se, pronounced dose-dependent DNA damage was seen with higher concentrations of AITC (>or= 25 microM). In parallel with the comet assays, also enzyme measurements were carried out which showed that exposure of the cells to mustard juice (2.0 microl/ml) causes a moderate induction of ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase, and more pronounced (approximately 2-fold) increase of the activity of glutathione-S-transferase. In conclusion, our findings indicate that i) mustard juice is highly protective against B(a)P-induced DNA damage in human derived cells and ii) that induction of detoxifying enzymes may account for its chemoprotective properties. iii) Furthermore, our findings show that the effects of crude juice can not be explained by its allyl isothiocyanate contents.