Environmental Chemicals and Biomembranes: Kinetics of Uptake and Influence on Membrane Functions

    Published: Jan 1988

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    The uptake kinetics, accumulation, and metabolism of several radioactively labeled environmental chemicals by the eucaryotic microorganism yeast were studied. The results have shown that this test system rapidly provides information about the extent of uptake and accumulation of such chemicals as a function of various external conditions. Thus, different forms of environmental hazard can be simulated.

    In addition, in several cases a correlation between inhibition of functional membrane proteins (adenosine triphosphatase and transport systems) and reduction of the cell growth rate was observed, which suggests that the toxicity of an environmental chemical may often be caused by the result of an interaction with important membrane components. The agreement of these results with acute toxicity data from the literature indicate that yeast is suitable for detecting potential hazards to higher organisms from chemicals.


    hazard evaluation, rapid test system, uptake, accumulation, metabolism, environmental chemicals, functional membrane proteins, nitrilotriacetic acid (NTA), cadmium ion, 4-nitrophenol, hexachlorobenzene, chlorinated phenols

    Author Information:

    Ahlers, J
    Federal Environmental Agency, Berlin,

    Rösick, E
    Institut für Biochemie und Molekularbiologie, Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin,

    Stadtlander, K
    Institut für Biochemie und Molekularbiologie, Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin,

    Committee/Subcommittee: D19.04

    DOI: 10.1520/STP26260S

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