Genotoxicity is modulated by ascorbic acid: Studies using the wing spot test in Drosophila

Bülent Kaya, Amadeu Creus, Antonia Velázquez, Atila Yanikoǧlu, Ricardo Marcos

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The ability of ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) to modulate the genotoxic action of several mutagens was investigated in the wing spot test of Drosophila melanogaster. In this assay, 3-day-old transheterozygous larvae for the multiple wing hairs (mwh, 3-0.3) and flare (flr, 3-38.8) genes were treated with three reference mutagenic compounds, namely cobalt chloride (CoCl2), 4-nitroquinoline 1-oxide (4-NQO) and potassium dichromate (K2Cr2O7). The results obtained show that the three reference mutagens tested were clearly genotoxic in the Drosophila wing somatic mutation and recombination test (SMART). None of the three concentrations tested of ascorbic acid (25, 75 and 250mM) induced significant increases in the frequency of the mutant clones recorded. When co-treatment experiments with ascorbic acid were carried out, different results were found. Thus, ascorbic acid was effective in reducing the genotoxicity of K2Cr2O7 virtually to the control level; on the contrary, it did not show any antigenotoxic effect on the genotoxicity of 4-NQO. Finally, co-treatments with CoCl2 and ascorbic acid show a significant increase in the frequency of mutant clones over the values obtained with CoCl2 alone. © 2002 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)93-101
Number of pages9
JournalMutation Research - Genetic Toxicology and Environmental Mutagenesis
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - 26 Sept 2002


  • Antigenotoxicity
  • Ascorbic acid
  • Drosophila
  • Somatic cells


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