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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 173903, 9 pages
Research Article

Combined Cytogenotoxic Effects of Bee Venom and Bleomycin on Rat Lymphocytes: An In Vitro Study

1Department of Forensic Medicine and Toxicology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Zagazig University, Zagazig 44511, Egypt
2Animal Wealth Development Department, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Zagazig University, Zagazig 44511, Egypt
3Physiology Department, Faculty of Medicine, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
4AL-Amodi Autism Research Chair, Autism Research and Treatment Centre, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Received 10 January 2014; Accepted 21 March 2014; Published 16 April 2014

Academic Editor: Joohun Ha

Copyright © 2014 Yasmina M. Abd-Elhakim et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This study was carried out to determine the cytotoxic and genotoxic effects of bee venom (BV) and/or the chemotherapeutic agent bleomycin (BLM) on healthy isolated rat lymphocytes utilizing morphometric and molecular techniques. Using the Ficoll-Histopaque density gradient centrifugation technique, lymphocytes were isolated, divided into groups, and subjected to BV and/or BLM at incubation medium concentrations of 10 or 20 μg/mL respectively for 24 and 72 hrs. An MTT assay and fluorescent microscopy examinations were used to assess the cytotoxic effects. To determine the predominant type of BV and/or BLM-induced cell death, LDH release assay was employed beside quantitative expression analyses of the apoptosis-related genes (Caspase-3 and Bcl-2). The genotoxic effects of the tested compounds were evaluated via DNA fragmentation assay. The results of these assays demonstrated that BV potentiates BLM-induced cytotoxicity through increased LDH release and diminished cell viability. Nevertheless, BV significantly inhibited the BLM-induced DNA damage. The results verify that BV significantly attenuates the genotoxic effects of BLM on noncancerous isolated rat lymphocytes but does not diminish BLM cytotoxicity.