Development of a combined method to assess the complex effect of atrazine on sex steroid synthesis in H295R cells

Judit Háhn, Sándor Szoboszlay, Csilla Krifaton, Krisztina J. Kovács, Szilamér Ferenczi, Balázs Kriszt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of the study was to develop a rapid, cost-effective combined testing method to assess the indirect effect of compounds interfering with sex steroid synthesis and to determine complex effects of atrazine on estrogen and androgen synthesis in vitro on H295R human cell line. Steroidogenic assay was performed on H295R human adrenocortical carcinoma cell line. Instead of standard analytical methods, bioluminescence bioreporter assays (Saccharomyces cerevisiae BLYES and BLYAS) were used to measure estrogenic and androgenic effects of sex steroid hormones released by human cells in response to atrazine. Atrazine resulted in elevated estrogen production presumably due to its well documented inductive effect on aromatase on H295R cell line, detected by BLYES. Interestingly, results of BLYAS test showed concentration-dependent increase of androgen production in H295R cells. That indicates that atrazine can not only increase estrogen level via aromatase induction, but may interfere in androgen synthesis as well. The combined method allows us to assess the androgenic and estrogenic effect of sex steroids produced by human cells in increased or decreased quantity as a result of the different chemicals, without determining specific analytical measurement endpoints, by using the yeast based bioluminescent bioreporter test.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)507-514
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - Jul 1 2016


  • Atrazine
  • Endocrine disruptor
  • Estrogenic and androgenic effects
  • H295R
  • Steroidogenesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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