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Journal of Toxicology
Volume 2011, Article ID 373141, 9 pages
Research Article

Toxicological Characterization of the Inorganic and Organic Arsenic Metabolite Thio-DMAV in Cultured Human Lung Cells

1Institute of Food Chemistry, University of Muenster, Corrensstraße 45, 48149 Muenster, Germany
2Graduate School of Chemistry, University of Muenster, 48149 Muenster, Germany
3Institute of Inorganic and Analytical Chemistry, University of Muenster, Corrensstraße 30, 48149 Muenster, Germany

Received 4 July 2011; Accepted 8 August 2011

Academic Editor: Michael Aschner

Copyright © 2011 Marc Bartel 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.


We synthesised and toxicologically characterised the arsenic metabolite thiodimethylarsinic acid (thio-DMAV). Successful synthesis of highly pure thio-DMAV was confirmed by state-of-the-art analytical techniques including H1-NMR, HPLC-FTMS, and HPLC-ICPMS. Toxicological characterization was carried out in comparison to arsenite and its well-known trivalent and pentavalent methylated metabolites. It comprised cellular bioavailability as well as different cytotoxicity and genotoxicity end points in cultured human A549 lung cells. Of all arsenicals investigated, thio-DMAV exerted the strongest cytotoxicity. Moreover, thio-DMAV did not induce DNA strand breaks and an increased induction of both micronuclei and multinucleated cells occurred only at beginning cytotoxic concentrations, indicating that thio-DMAV does not act via a genotoxic mode of action. Finally, to assess potential implications of thio-DMAV for human health, further mechanistic studies are urgently necessary to identify the toxic mode of action of this highly toxic, unusual pentavalent organic arsenical.