The target of the present study is to estimate the in vitro
genotoxic potential of the volatile-anaesthetic halothane (Narcotan7)
as well as the protective effect of vitamin A, as an antioxidant. To achieve
this task, the alkaline single cell gel electrophoresis (comet assay)
was applied as the extent of DNA fragmentation in rabbit lymphocytes that
were exposed in vitro to halothane at concentrations of 0.1 or
1.0 mM for 10 and 30 min, respectively. The obtained results elucidated
that anaesthetic halothane induced a significant increase in DNA damage
that shown by comet DNA concentration and its tail length. The recorded
elevation of DNA damage was clearly correlated with halothane concentration
as well as the period of exposure. To mend the deleterious effect of halothane
on DNA, 25 rabbits were orally received vitamin A (8000 IU kg-1
body weight) for 15 days prior to in vitro halothane exposure.
Vitamin A administration induced a significant repairing effect in lymphocytes-damaged
DNA due to halothane exposure, comparing with the non-administrated group.
The genotoxic effect of halothane might be attributed to its property
as an oxidative agent capable to accumulate oxygen free radicals inside
the cell and producing DNA damage. Thereby, the antioxidant property of
vitamin A might counteract the hazardous effect of anaesthetic halothane.
It is concluded that there is a great need of vitamin A intake for patients
undergoing surgical operations with halothane anaesthesia and as a prophylactic
therapy for the operation room personnel to antagonize the possible genotoxic
effect of halothane.
Hussein I. El-Belbasi, Hany M. Hassan and Mona M. Mantawy, 2008. In vitro Genotoxic Effect of Anaesthetic Halothane on Rabbit Lymphocytes and the Protective Role of Vitamin A Supplementation. Asian Journal of Biochemistry, 3: 153-161.