Restoration of Cognitive Performance in Mice Carrying a Deficient Allele of 8-Oxoguanine DNA Glycosylase by X-ray Irradiation
Studies in mice with deficient antioxidative enzymes have shown that physiological levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) can adversely affect the developing embryo and fetus. Herein, DNA repair-deficient progeny of oxoguanine glycosylase 1 (ogg1)-knockout mice lacking repair of the oxidative DNA lesion 8-oxo-2'-deoxyguanosine (8-oxodGuo) exhibited enhanced postnatal neurodevelopmental deficits, revealing the pathogenic potential of 8-oxodGuo initiated by physiological ROS production in fetal brain and providing the first evidence of a pathological phenotype for ogg1-knockout mice. Moreover, when exposed in utero to ethanol (EtOH), ogg1-knockout progeny exhibited higher levels of 8-oxodGuo in fetal brain and more severe postnatal neurodevelopmental deficits than wild-type littermates, both of which were blocked by pretreatment with the free radical trapping agent phenylbutylnitrone. These results suggest that ROS-initiated DNA oxidation, as distinct from altered signal transduction, contributes to neurodevelopmental deficits caused by in utero EtOH exposure, and fetal DNA repair is a determinant of risk.