[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Higher plant cells have a long tradition of use in the studies on environmental mutagenesis in situ, especially in relation to human health risk determination. The studies on the response of plant and human cells to physical and chemical mutagens showed differences in their sensitivity. The differences in the presence of cell components in plants and humans could influence such response. Additionally, the level of the organization of the employed material could influence DNA-damaging effect: leukocytes are isolated cells and plant--an intact organism. To preclude these obstacles, the effects of direct treatment of isolated nuclei with genotoxic agents were determined to compare the sensitivity of plant and human cells. In the present study, we have determined the DNA-damaging effects of two chemical mutagens: maleic acid hydrazide (MH) and N-methyl-N-nitroso-urea (MNU) applied to isolated nuclei of both plant and human cells. In order to compare the sensitivity of the nuclei of Nicotiana tabacum var. xanthi and the nuclei of leukocytes, the acellular Comet assay was carried out. The results showed higher sensitivity of the nuclei of leukocytes as compared to the nuclei of plant cells to mutagenic treatment with the applied doses of MH and MNU.
Folia Histochemica et Cytobiologica 02/2006; 44(2):127-31. · 1.36 Impact Factor