Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. David S. Reinhold

Second Advisor

Dr. Ralph Steinhaus

Third Advisor

Dr. Steven Bertman

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


Cancer researchers are interested in identifying the environmental causes and synergistic influences of different chemical carcinogens in order to decrease the risk of cancer. There are numerous studies which have investigated the effect of individual carcinogens but relatively few in which a well defined mixture of chemicals have been used. The present study was performed to examine the effect of chromium compounds on benzo[a]pyrene diolepoxide (BPDE) induced cytotoxicity and mutagenicity in human fibroblasts. Cytotoxicity was measured by the ability to fonn colonies while selection of 6-thioguanine resistant mutants were used to study mutagenesis in human fibroblasts.

Our results indicate that the effect of Cr(VI) on BPDE induced cytotoxicity is more than additive, whereas, the effect of Cr(VI) on BPDE mutagenicity is antagonistic. The effects of two antioxidants, vitamin E and catalase, on BPDE and Cr(VI) induced cytotoxicity and mutagenicity were also examined. Results suggest the involvement of an oxidative stress mechanism in the Cr(VI) induced cytotoxicity as well as the inhibition of mutations at the HGPRT locus by this metal.

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Chemistry Commons