Effect of Lead on Human Middle Ear Epithelial Cells

Shin Hye Kim, Sun Hwa Shin, Yoon Young Go, Sung Won Chae, Jae Jun Song

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    5 Citations (Scopus)


    Lead is a ubiquitous metal in the environment, but no studies have examined lead toxicity on the middle ear. Here, we investigated lead toxicity and its mechanism in human middle ear epithelial cells (HMEECs). Moreover, we investigated the protective effects of amniotic membrane extract (AME) and chorionic membrane extract (CME) against lead toxicity in HMEECs. Cell viability was analyzed using the cell counting kit, and reactive oxygen species (ROS) activity was measured using a cellular ROS detection kit. After lead(II) acetate trihydrate treatment, mRNA levels of various genes were assessed by semiquantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction. Following treatment with AME or CME after lead exposure, the changes in cell viability, ROS activity, and gene expression were analyzed. Exposure to >100 μg/mL of lead(II) acetate trihydrate caused a significant decrease in cell viability and increased ROS production in HMEECs. Lead exposure significantly increased the mRNA expression of genes encoding inflammatory cytokines and mucins. Administration of AME or CME restored cell viability, reduced ROS activity, and ameliorated mRNA levels. Our findings suggest that environmental lead exposure is related to the development of otitis media, and AME and CME may have antioxidative and anti-inflammatory effects against lead toxicity.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number5058729
    JournalBioMed Research International
    Publication statusPublished - 2018

    Bibliographical note

    Funding Information:
    This work was supported by a grant from the Korea Health Technology R&D Project through the Korea Health Industry Development Institute (KHIDI), funded by the Ministry of Health & Welfare, Republic of Korea (Grant no. HI15C2809).

    Publisher Copyright:
    © 2018 Shin Hye Kim et al.

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology
    • General Immunology and Microbiology


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