ZFIN ID: ZDB-PUB-180609-30
Transcriptomic response and perturbation of toxicity pathways in zebrafish larvae after exposure to graphene quantum dots (GQDs)
Deng, S., Jia, P.P., Zhang, J.H., Junaid, M., Niu, A., Ma, Y.B., Fu, A., Pei, D.S.
Date: 2018
Source: Journal of hazardous materials   357: 146-158 (Journal)
Registered Authors: Deng, Shun, Jia, Panpan, Junaid, Muhammad, Ma, Yanbo, Pei, Desheng, Zhang, Jinghui
Keywords: GQDs, Key words, Signaling pathways, Transcriptome analysis, Zebrafish
MeSH Terms:
  • Animals
  • Fish Proteins/genetics
  • Graphite/toxicity*
  • Larva/drug effects*
  • Larva/genetics
  • Quantum Dots/toxicity*
  • Transcriptome/drug effects*
  • Water Pollutants, Chemical/toxicity*
  • Zebrafish/genetics*
PubMed: 29883909 Full text @ J. Hazard. Mater.
Graphene quantum dots (GQDs) are widely used for biomedical applications. Previously, the low-level toxicity of GQDs in vivo and in vitro has been elucidated, but the underlying molecular mechanisms remained largely unknown. Here, we employed the Illumina high-throughput RNA-sequencing to explore the whole-transcriptome profiling of zebrafish larvae after exposure to GQDs. Comparative transcriptome analysis identified 2116 differentially expressed genes between GQDs exposed groups and control. Functional classification demonstrated that a large proportion of genes involved in acute inflammatory responses and detoxifying process were significantly up-regulated by GQDs. The inferred gene regulatory network suggested that activator protein 1 (AP-1) was the early-response transcription factor in the linkage of a cascade of downstream (pro-) inflammatory signals with the apoptosis signals. Moreover, hierarchical signaling threshold determined the high sensitivity of complement system in zebrafish when exposed to the sublethal dose of GQDs. Further, 35 candidate genes from various signaling pathways were further validated by qPCR after exposure to 25, 50, and 100 μg/mL of GQDs. Taken together, our study provided a valuable insight into the molecular mechanisms of potential bleeding risks and detoxifying processes in response to GQDs exposure, thereby establishing a mechanistic basis for the biosafety evaluation of GQDs.